How to Ensure a Watertight Deck
While it’s great that the sun has finally decided to come out after a long time away, it’s not all dry and warm from here. A wet April, on top of a soggy March can really test the mettle of your deck – which is why ensuring a watertight deck is so vital. Tuff Industries can help you with a few tips to ensure a waterproof deck.
First: Don’t Ignore Problems
We can’t stress this enough – check your deck! If you have any suspicion that you no longer have a watertight deck, then it’s time to figure out the cause or call in a professional. A small leak might not seem like much, but it’s like an iceberg; what you see on top is only a small indication of what’s going on underneath.
Small issues, particularly if they are close to the building envelope can turn into huge nightmares if not taken care of quickly.
Second: Can Water Escape?
It’s not the end of the world to have a wet deck, as long as the water has a way to clear your deck surface, which then has a chance to dry out. Standing water is the enemy of any deck – given a chance it will find a way under the surface or into areas between the deck and the building.
Older decks can settle over time, reducing the slope so water isn’t encouraged to run off. This issue should be fixed (and can be fairly easily).
Third: The Deck Floor
When a vinyl deck surface is installed, it needs something to adhere to. Older decks might need this surface replaced over time. Ensure that your builder uses the correct, building by-law approved surface. That means no OSB! Depending on where you live, you might bump up your deck surface to one that’s more able to deal with your weather (extreme cold, damp, etc.).
Thicker panels are a good choice too, as they’ll hold up longer and flex less as you walk across them.
Fourth: Edges and Fascia for a Watertight Deck
Anywhere water meets an edge it needs encouragement to keep going – preferably far, far away from your home. Remember that water is naturally “clingly” – it can follow vertical services and even run underneath. Which is why drip edges, fascia, and flashing are so important – they help move the water away from the surface so it can drain.
Flashing is vital for surrounding deck posts, so there’s no way water can run down the post and under your vinyl deck surface.
Finally: A High-Quality Vinyl Deck Surface
To keep a deck watertight, you need a waterproof surface. After installing a waterproof deck surface your deck (or patio) will be fully protected for the long term. Without a waterproof surface, you will have to find some other way to protect your deck for the long term – such as sanding and staining every year.
Overall, a vinyl surface is a great way to go if you wish to create a watertight deck. Check out our gallery for some inspiration for your next project.