Never Tile Over a Waterproof Deck!

While a waterproofed deck is nice to have, a tile deck is aesthetically pleasing and can add to the value of your home. However, many homeowners also mistakenly decide to simply tile over their existing waterproof deck. If you’re considering this: do not go through with it. We have seen many decks sustain serious damage because of this arrangement. Allow us to explain why.

Do tiles improve boost waterproof qualities? In short, the answer is no. However, many homeowners believe the opposite. It would seem that putting a waterproof surface over a waterproof surface would mean it’s extra secure, right? Not exactly. Most decks were never designed for tile surfaces. The elevations at the doors and edges are set at very specific heights to encourage water to flow away from potential leak areas. Tiling over a deck, especially a DIY job, often ruins these heights and guarantees that water will seep into high-leak areas, such as where your deck meets your walls and door. In some cases, tiling over a deck can even bring the height of the deck above the door, which encourages water to flood into it.

In addition, tiling also tremendously increases the weight of a deck, and most decks were not designed to handle this weight. When a heavy deck gets wet, it adds even more weight on top of that. A deck that’s too heavy is at risk of structural damage or even collapsing if you’re not too careful.

Finally, most tile laying jobs don’t account for the required slope you need to move water away from important areas. Standards dictate that a deck have a slope of ¼” per foot in order to help gravity move water properly.

Material Expansion

When you place tiles over a waterproofed deck, you are essentially dealing with two different surface materials that expand at different rates. Stone tiles expand very little in warm weather, whereas wood, metal, and mortar all expand at a different rate. This means you need to have expansion joints in your deck to make sure the materials won’t crack or splinter during hot or cold weather. Placing tiles over a waterproofed deck means any expansion joints currently installed will be rendered useless. This places your deck at risk for an imminent failure.

If you would like to surface your deck with tiles, it’s important that you allow a seasoned contractor to do the job right and then allow it to be sealed by a Los Angeles deck waterproofing company. Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing has provided exceptional service and quality workmanship to home and business owners for more than 30 years. Each of our friendly and knowledgeable technicians uses the highest-quality parts and materials to create a durable, trustworthy seal over your deck to help it last for years against the elements. We are fully licensed, bonded, and insured and all our services are backed up by warranties and own guarantee to give you the peace of mind of knowing your job will be done properly or we’ll make sure it’s fixed to your satisfaction.

Get a free quote for waterproofing your deck today! Call Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing at (310) 912-7737 .

What Is Ponding?

Do you seem to notice that certain spots on your deck always seem to stay wet the longest after it rains or you wash your deck? This is because that particular spot is a low point in your deck’s surface, which is rarely even. This is called “ponding,” and it affects nearly every waterproofed deck around. Most of the time, ponding is more a nuisance than anything serious, but serious cases are an indicator of potentially bigger problems with your deck.

There’s a very easy way to tell whether or not you should be worried about the spots where you find ponding. When your deck gets wet, does the water stay for longer than 24 hours? If not, then you have nothing to worry about. If it does, then you may want to consider having the spot repaired.

Causes of Ponding

As stated previously, ponding is an extremely common problem, mostly because it has a wide variety of causes. Most decks contain some form of ponding due to one of these reasons:

  • Edge Metal: Edge metal is typically installed over sheet membrane or paper, creating an added thickness in the underlayment membrane. This usually means there’s just enough buildup to create ponding.
  • Not Enough Slope: Industry standard for deck sloping is 2%, or ¼” per foot of deck. Yes, this means a properly installed waterproof deck is never going to be perfectly flat. This is to force water to move towards a low point, where a drain is usually installed. However, not having enough slope won’t cause the water to migrate, and ponds will form.
  • Warped Framing: When constructing a deck out of wood, it’s perfectly normal for the material to expand and contract as it’s exposed to multiple climate changes. However, expanding material that’s nailed into place can warp, creating low points and ponds. Additionally, plywood brought in isn’t necessarily perfectly true to begin with, and these minor imperfections can expand, creating ponds.

Finding Ponding Early

What can you do to prevent ponding before it starts? The first and best thing you should do is to put water on your deck after it has been waterproofed to find any low points. You could try to find low points using a level as well, but trying to find a small low point in a deck that might be 500 square feet or more is an overwhelming task. You also shouldn’t try getting the wood wet either; wood absorbs water which can lead to fungal growth and rot.

Once the deck has been wet, you should be able to quickly spot and circle any low points. Once the deck dries, you can fill these low points with an applicator to level the surface before applying the top coats to completely finish the project.

If your deck has serious ponding issues, leading to cracks, deformation, and structural weakness, call Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing . Our Los Angeles deck waterproofing experts have provided high-quality construction, repair, and resurfacing services for more than 30 years. We back all our work with warranties and a guarantee of quality to give you the confidence that you’ll be satisfied with your deck or we’ll do everything we can to fix it. We are even available on weekends to help you get the service you need on your schedule!

Schedule your service or get a quote today! Call Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing at (310) 912-7737 .

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