Roof Decking

What Is Roof Decking, and Why Is It Important?

Roofing is about more than just nailing some shingles to a pre-existing structure—building that structure in the first place is an essential component of any roofing project. While most people don’t know about it because it isn’t visible, the structure of the roof, known as decking, is the most crucial part of the roof, and poor decking will cause many problems for your roof in the future.

If you want to work with a roofer that understands the importance of roof decking, give Elite Remodeling Services in Farmington a call at (952) 646-2480 today!

What Is Roof Decking?

Roof decking is the underlying foundation of the roof. It provides the structure that holds the shingles in place and is also the last line of defense against hail, snow, and heavy rain.

Good roof decking provides enough support to hold the weight of the roofing while also providing a good amount of insulation and protection against water damage. Poor decking is weak, unstable, and will decrease your roof system’s performance from the very start.

The Two Main Types of Roof Decking

When talking about roofing, you may hear professionals refer to decking or sheathing. These are very similar and refer to the two primary types of roof decking: plank and sheet decking.

Plank Decking

Plank decking uses elongated wooden boards to provide the decking surface. These planks are usually made from wood, but steel decking is becoming increasingly popular due to its durability and longevity.

Sheet Decking

Sheet decking uses large sheets instead of planks to make the decking surface. These sheets have fewer seams than plank decking, improving the waterproofing effect of the structure.

They’re also easier to install, which lowers labor costs and makes this decking type more affordable than plank decking.

No matter what type of decking you use, you have to work with an experienced roofer. They’ll install the decking correctly, ensuring that you have a strong roof structure that can stand up to anything that a Minnesota winter can throw at it.

Why Is Roof Decking Important?

Having good decking is the first step to having a high-performing, long-lived roof that requires very few roof repairs in the future. We’ve included the three main reasons why decking is so important to highlight precisely how foundational a deck is to your roof’s success.

1.) Provides a Holding Surface

The deck’s surface has to be thick enough to hold a nail. Roofers nail the shingles down into the deck, and if the decking material is too weak, these nails will pull out easily and quickly fall apart. Also, significant gaps between the sheets will result in some shingles getting nailed into nothing, providing them with no stability.

Modern building codes have a recommended minimum thickness and maximum gap spacing to address these potential issues. The better the holding surface, the fewer shingles will come off during severe storms and the fewer repairs you’ll need.

2.) Creates the Roofing Structure

Shingles and other roofing materials are flexible and designed to expand and contract. This flexibility allows them to follow the shape of the underlying foundation. Good decking provides a solid, straight structure that doesn’t sag or change shape during its lifespan.

A curved or sagging roof decking will cause the shingles also to curve, leading to a less waterproof structure and more chance of shingles blowing off during strong winds or storms. Wavy decking can result in pooling water on the roof, which is a disaster and will cost a fortune in water damage repairs.

Good decking is straight and remains that way throughout its lifetime, allowing shingles to provide a waterproof layer that protects the entire roof against water.

3.) Protects Against Bad Weather

Intense storms can rip off shingles and, in extreme cases, the decking as well. That’s why choosing the best decking material is so important, because it’s the last line of defense against heavy weather. The sheets must attach firmly to the roof’s structure to provide a solid base that won’t rip off in a storm.

To find out more about roof decking or schedule a consultation, give Elite Remodeling Services a call at (952) 646-2480 today. We’ve helped hundreds of residents get the roof of their dreams, and we look forward to helping you too!

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