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In home design and architecture, roof windows are a great way to add natural light and ventilation into a closed-off space. With a roof window, you can transform a dark space into something bright and airy. A common question with pitched or flat roof windows is – are they safe to walk on?

Whether you’re looking to do some work on a roof window, or you’re simply curious, this is an important safety question. In the following guide, we’re going to explore and answer this question in detail, outlining some of the risks associated with walking on roof windows, as well as giving you some examples of windows that are specifically designed for this feature.

Reasons why you shouldn’t walk on roof windows

Walking on pitched or flat roof windows is generally not advised. There are a few key reasons why this is so, and you should keep these in mind when considering the question.

Structural risks: Roof windows are designed mostly for light and ventilation. They’re not created to withstand the weight of a person. They can typically support the weight of snow, ice, or rain – or perhaps a bird who decided to sit upon your roof – but not human activity.

Walking on them could lead to cracking or a complete break, which in turn could lead to serious injury for the person in question.

Surface risks: The surface of a roof window can become slippy, especially when wet. This can increase the risk of falls which can result in serious injury or even fatalities, depending on the location of the window.

Warranty issues: Damages that occur because of a person walking on a window may interfere with warranties. This can also extend to insurance policies that may not cover this scenario.

Maintenance issues: By walking on a skylight or roof window, you will increase the need for maintenance.

Generally, a roof window will only need a small amount of maintenance to clean debris, ice or excess water. If you walk on flat roof windows or their pitched counterparts, they will potentially need bigger, more frequent repairs.

Weight restrictions: Another thing to keep in mind is that there are weight restrictions for your roof window. While the weight limit may allow a single person to walk on it, there is always a chance it could crack or break under heavy weight.

Cost of replacements or repairs: If your roof window gets broken, the cost of a repair or a total replacement could be difficult to manage. There are many components which can cost a substantial amount to repair or replace, including the glass pane, the frame and any waterproofing elements.

Windows designed for walk-on purposes

While we have outlined some key reasons why it’s not a good idea to walk on roof windows, it’s important to note that not all roof windows are off limit. The industry has recognised the demand for more versatile windows, leading to the creation of windows designed to be walked on.

Take for example the DXW flat roof window by Fakro. This window has been designed with an enhanced load capacity and a special non-slip coating, allowing people to walk over its surface. It’s a great choice for terraces or green roofs where a person might want a sturdy window without compromising on aesthetic style.

Just as with other Fakro roof windows, the DXW flat roof window has been designed to let in natural light and minimise heat loss in a room.

Its profiles are filled with insulating material to prevent heat from escaping, or cold air from getting in. It’s also available with a double chamber glazing unit with an efficient heat transfer rate.

Find a walk-on roof window with Roof Window Outlet

Although there are some specially designed roof windows that can be walked on, it’s not generally recommended! If you walk on a roof window that hasn’t been reinforced, it puts both you and the window at risk.

While many customers may not see the need for a walk-on roof window – sometimes it can be an important feature. If you are searching for a walk-on roof window, Roof Window Outlet is here to help every step of the way.

As a supplier of Fakro products, as well as other popular window manufacturers like Keylite and Velux, we can help you to find the perfect window for you. Contact our friendly team today to get the advice you need.

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