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How Dormer Windows Alter Your Roof

You may not be able to put an image with the name dormer windows, but rest assured you know exactly what they are. When you look at the slope of a roof and there is a window jutting out vertically, this is the dormer window. These windows tend to have a small, sloped area of their own, and this too has the same shingles as the rest of the roof. They are cute additions to home design and work perfectly for turning attic space into a livable area. They are placed to help with natural lighting and airflow.

Dormer Materials & Costs

Dormer windows alter your roof by penetrating the main roof area. This creates more seams, more flashings, and more shingles. If the dormer is peaked, as some dormer windows are round, then you’ll also need more ridge caps to top everything off. It’s not surprising that an extra area of roofing requires more material. What might be surprising is the cost. Depending on the size and exact shape, these windows can range in cost from around $2,000 to nearly $20,000 per window! This isn’t a sunken cost though. Dormer windows can greatly increase your home’s value and square footage by converting an attic into a living space.

Think dormers would be a great addition to your home? Check out to learn about different dormer styles and how to maintain them.

dormer windows
advantages of dormers

Advantages Of Dormers

These windows can be created as the main design plans for a brand-new home or added to an existing home with the help of a professional roofing contractor. Other than the fact that dormer windows are stylish and add curb appeal to a home, they also add value. It’s estimated that you can increase a home’s value by up to 20% by adding dormer windows. 

Similar to bay windows, dormers can be quite large and don’t have to be a window segment at a time. If you want to add an entire wall dormer, where there are two to three windows on one segment, you can. This increases the headspace and usability of the attic area. It opens up the ability to make the space usable as bedrooms or playrooms. While raising a roof is a huge project, dormer windows can be an easy fix to a space with too short a ceiling. Thankfully, you can also add them to almost any existing roof. Of course, you’ll need to speak to a contractor for all the details and a breakdown of how dormers will fit with your home, but if you’re interested in increasing space in your home it is worth the call and conversation!

Installing Dormers

Aside from the cost, it’s important to consider how dormer windows alter your roof and its functionality. A basic sloped roof is designed to efficiently remove water, ice, and snow from your roof. Any roof has a certain load-bearing weight, typically around 20-100 pounds per square foot. However, you don’t want anything sitting on the roof too long or weighing it down. The longer things like ice and snow set, the more damage can be done to your shingles and roof decking.

When we add dormer windows, it creates more areas for things to build up. The connecting corners of where the main roof and the dormer window meet can catch leaves, snow, and other debris and act as a spout to direct rainwater, which can cause a buildup of moss or other roof growths. Because this is the meeting of two plans, that means it is also a seam. If flashings or shingles become loose, this can lead to an easy leak. None of this is overly worrisome, as contractors install their dormers, and then roofers lay their roofing with professionalism and experience. Depending on the size of the dormers, your contractor’s schedule, and how long it may take to get materials, the project can take anywhere between a month to six months.

installing dormers

As far as roofing goes, dormers are just another part of your roof. They are roofed and shingled much the same way, and should hold up to the same weather. Make sure to check your roof after storms or falling branches, and get your roof inspected twice a year. If you have just bought a new home with dormers and aren’t sure about their roofing quality, call Clayton Hoover and Sons to get you all checked out and put your mind at ease! If something looks off, we’ll get you a solution and a free estimate in no time! Contact us at for a roofing inspection, a free estimate, or to ask any questions you have about adding dormers to your home.