How To Evaluate Roof Decks
Rooftops offer great opportunities for creating attractive entertaining or relaxing areas, but this useful space is so often wasted. Building a rooftop deck on an existing building is often seen as expensive, time-consuming and very difficult. But it needn’t be that way. There’s a number of excellent options that don’t involve constructing elaborate and expensive support structures of wood or steel, or potentially damage or penetrate existing waterproof membranes.
1. PORCELAIN PAVERS
For large rooftop decks and especially in commercial locations subject to heavy foot traffic, we suggest using structural porcelain pavers to construct a slightly elevated deck surface supported on adjustable height pedestals. These 3/4″ thick pavers are available in an exceptionally wide range of colors and styles like interior ceramic tiles, but are exceptionally strong, scratch resistant, stain resistant, frost proof and non-combustible. They don’t lock together like interlocking deck tiles mentioned above, but are simply positioned with the corner of each paver placed on the head of a support pedestal where inbuilt spacer tabs keep them accurately aligned and correctly spaced.
If your rooftop has service pipes, an uneven surface or slopes in multiple directions, one of the major advantages of this pedestal paver system is it enablse you to raise the deck surface over the service pipes and create a perfectly level, elevated roof deck surface. A pedestal paver system can raise the deck height from as little as 1/2″ to over 3 feet if required. And all this is achieved without any permanent structures such as beams or bearers or other deck support foundations being installed on the rooftop. The pedestals are simply placed on top of the existing surface or waterproof membrane, the wide, flat circular base avoiding any damage to membranes.
Porcelain pavers are considerably lighter than concrete pavers and thus much easier to transport to your rooftop and install, compared with concrete pavers. They are also wear resistant, stain resistant, fade resistant and freeze/thaw resistant. They are also available in an exceptionally broad range colors including simulated stone and simulated wood, so you have the ability to construct a wood look roof deck in locations which may have strict fire codes prohibiting or restricting a natural wood roof deck.