Installing skylight (1 Viewer)

Fulltiming Felines

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Our Hymer doesn't have a skylight over the cab area pull down bed, where we sleep. I've heard that's very useful to have in warm weather, to be able to have a draft when you're sleeping.

Is it a good idea to cut a skylight? Is it more prone to leaking to have it done aftermarket, compared to the built-in skylight we already have in the rear lounge?

How big?

How much would it cost? (I'm not going to DIY this)
 
Jun 30, 2011
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I wouldn't mess about that if it hasn't got one, a lot of work, can't you just open another skylight?

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Aug 6, 2013
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I wouldn't mess about that if it hasn't got one, a lot of work, can't you just open another skylight?
Not really with a modern roof. Buy rooflight, cut hole with jigsaw to supplied template, use strip mastic on rooflight, install, screw on inner frame. There are no screws into the roof and it won't leak. Checks before cutting hole are for no wiring in that area and no seam on the roof (although if a lighting wire is cut there's plenty of room to join it & extend around the rooflight). Roof reinforcement that needs to be avoided is, in the frontal area, limited to where the strap for the drop-down bed is located and is obvious from inside the van. I would install it myself but otherwise use someone recommended on here. Heki are a decent supplier & use a simple & robust opening mechanism. The job can be completed at a leisurely pace in two or three hours including tea breaks :).
 

scotjimland

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wouldn't advise on this until I see a picture of the proposed window location..

if the roof is flat it's doable and has been done by others on Hymers with the flat sloping front cap.. like the Hymer B544 Classic (not classics)

On a curve cap I would say no.. but anything is doable, but not always advisable.

Cost .. window + fitting by dealer best guesstimate : £400 - £600

other cheaper option is to fit a 12v fan

Hymer B544 Classic with sloping front roof cap
$_86.JPG
 

maz

Jan 26, 2011
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Our Hymer doesn't have a skylight over the cab area pull down bed, where we sleep. I've heard that's very useful to have in warm weather, to be able to have a draft when you’re sleeping
Why not wait until you’re actually using the van to see if the existing ventilation is adequate? o_O

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mfw

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Chances are an open skylight for airflow will allow more light in and then longer daylight hours means you will be up earlier in the summer - closing blackout blind will reduce airflow cant personally see any gain
 

scotjimland

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Chances are an open skylight for airflow will allow more light in and then longer daylight hours means you will be up earlier in the summer - closing blackout blind will reduce airflow cant personally see any gain

we had a roof-light above the transverse fixed bed, it was old and one of the struts was broken.. and it didn't open far, so I replaced it with a Mini Heki and it was great.. left it open when hot ..

we could look up and gaze at the stars.. even when closed.. when it got light in the morning and wanted a lay in, I closed the blind .. :)

Replaced this

IMG_0446.jpg

With this

IMG_0334.jpg

Made a huge improvement to both light and ventilation


IMG_1557.jpg
 

138go

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i have one over the front pull down bed in our Laika. I certainly would not say you get a draft through the skylight skylight unless you manage to park the right way round. The mossie screens certainly cut down on any draft you may get. I fitted a two speed 12v fan to the side wall and it can be angled to blow a breeze. You also have to make sure you close it as you can finish up with a wet bed.

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Fulltiming Felines

Fulltiming Felines

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Have Gear Tech got the gearbox out yet?
They will on Monday.

Why not wait until you’re actually using the van to see if the existing ventilation is adequate? o_O
I was thinking of putting the solar panel on the sloping part of the roof, but that's where the skylight would potentially go. So if I decide to install a skylight over the cab later, then I need to install the solar panel at a different location.

I've read from a few people (including @dave newell lvs) that the small degree of slope of the front part of the roof can increase energy collection. I'm not sure how much the boost would be. Considering you can get a 40% boost if you have a tilting bracket tilted at 63°, let's say the roof slopes at 10°, then just a simple arithmetic of 10/60*40% = 6.66%. I'm sure the real life numbers don't work like this, but 6.66% boost is pretty small and doesn't seem worth it. Maybe this is worth a separate thread.

if the roof is flat it's doable and has been done by others on Hymers with the flat sloping front cap.. like the Hymer B544 Classic (not classics)
Yes, that's what the roof looks like, flat sloping front. Thanks for the estimate. I think it's definitely worth considering.

Chances are an open skylight for airflow will allow more light in and then longer daylight hours means you will be up earlier in the summer - closing blackout blind will reduce airflow cant personally see any gain
I don't mind waking up early. Rather enjoy doing that really.
 

maz

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I was thinking of putting the solar panel on the sloping part of the roof, but that's where the skylight would potentially go. So if I decide to install a skylight over the cab later, then I need to install the solar panel at a different location.
Will one solar panel be sufficient for your needs? And what size will it be? Maybe you’ll need to cover all available roof space with solar panels? I’d certainly prioritise that over installing a rooflight that you might not even need.

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Fulltiming Felines

Fulltiming Felines

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Will one solar panel be sufficient for your needs? And what size will it be? Maybe you’ll need to cover all available roof space with solar panels? I’d certainly prioritise that over installing a rooflight that you might not even need.
Good point. I think we'll start with installing solar panels on the flat part of the roof (not the sloping front), hopefully with tilting brackets, and see how we got on.

Then in spring/summer we can decide what to do with the sloping front roof: skylight or more solar.
 
Aug 6, 2013
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other cheaper option is to fit a 12v fan

Or even better change an existing 400 x 400 rooflight for an Omnivent then fit a small window in the sidewall near the bed head. I had this arrangement on a previous van & it worked brilliantly with the vent on slow extract drawing cool air in through any open window.

upload_2018-11-10_13-44-52.png
 

mfw

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Good point. I think we'll start with installing solar panels on the flat part of the roof (not the sloping front), hopefully with tilting brackets, and see how we got on.

Then in spring/summer we can decide what to do with the sloping front roof: skylight or more solar.

Think you have to look at battery capacity in relation to ideal solar power i have 2 110ah leisure batteries + vehicle battery and a 160w panel gives me enough power during the summer but i only sit in same place for 3 or 4 days normally

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mfw

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I don't want to be too negative but I really think you should hold off doing anything until you know for certain that the gearbox, driveshaft and it's intermediate support can be fixed without costing you an arm and leg.

D.
Think all that lot in a garage and some sort of warranty on it will cost an arm and a leg

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mfw

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@Fulltiming Felines
Yes, how are you getting on with that? Hope it hasn’t turned out to be a lemon. :unsure:

If the gearbox needs replacing and garage does the work got to be around £1500 that sort of initial expense on an old van is it worth chucking money at in all honesty - lot of people budget an amount for servicing but this sort of repair has probably taken all the servicing budget
 

Rosemary1

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I don't mind waking up early. Rather enjoy doing that really.[/QUOTE]

I like to wake up early in the summer too - but have two dogs who once get the slightest hint of light decide it’s time to Play Play Play:D my husband is the blackout monitor each night before we retire to bed:)
 
Feb 22, 2011
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Well that's better than hearing from about broken gearboxes and leaking skylights o_O

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