Ah, the joys of having a deck! Whether you use it for enjoying your morning coffee, hosting BBQ parties, or just relaxing in the sun, a deck is an asset to your home. But what about that underused space beneath your deck? Wouldn’t it be great if you could make the most out of that space by keeping it dry and turning it into an additional living or storage area? Well, guess what – you can! In this blog post, we’re going to explore some effective ways to keep your under-deck area dry and functional so that you can maximize every bit of your property. Let’s dive in!
Why Bother Keeping the Under-Deck Area Dry?
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to keep the under-deck space dry, let’s discuss why it’s worth doing in the first place.
- Additional Living Space: By keeping the area beneath your deck dry, you open up possibilities for creating additional living spaces like a patio lounge or an outdoor dining area.
- Extra Storage Space: A dry under-deck space can serve as excellent storage for gardening tools, lawn equipment, bicycles or even seasonal items like holiday decorations.
- Prevent Damage: Moisture trapped underneath a deck can lead to wood rot and other structural issues over time. Keeping this area dry helps preserve and protect your investment.
- Enhance Curb Appeal: A well-maintained and functional under-deck space not only adds value to your home but also contributes positively towards its curb appeal.
Now that we know why we should bother keeping our under-deck areas dry let’s talk about how.
How To Keep Your Under-Deck Area Dry
There are several methods available when it comes to waterproofing an under-deck space – some more DIY-friendly than others. We’re going to discuss a few popular options, so you can choose the one that suits your needs and skill level best.
Under-Deck Ceiling Systems
One of the most popular methods for keeping under-deck spaces dry is by installing an under-deck ceiling system. These systems consist of panels that attach to the underside of your deck, catching any water or moisture that seeps through the decking above and diverting it away from the space below.
There are several types of under-deck ceiling systems on the market, including:
- Vinyl Membrane Systems: Vinyl membranes are sheets of waterproof material that you install directly onto your deck’s joists, creating a watertight seal between your decking boards and the space below.
- Aluminum or Steel Panels: These systems use interlocking metal panels installed along with your deck’s joists to create channels that direct water away from the area underneath.
- Wooden Troughs: This DIY option involves constructing wooden troughs beneath your deck’s joists to catch and divert water away from the area below.
Each type of under-deck ceiling system has its advantages and disadvantages in terms of cost, aesthetics, ease of installation, and maintenance requirements. Be sure to research each option thoroughly before making a decision.
Deck Drainage Systems
Another effective method for keeping under-deck areas dry is by installing a deck drainage system. Unlike an under-deck ceiling system which focuses primarily on catching water after it has passed through your decking boards, a deck drainage system aims at preventing water from getting through in the first place.
Some common types of deck drainage systems include:
- Tongue-and-Groove Decking Boards: These special decking boards have interlocking edges that create a tight seal when installed, preventing water infiltration.
- Waterproof Deck Coatings: Waterproof coatings such as elastomeric paint or acrylic sealers can be applied to your deck’s surface to create a watertight barrier.
- Deck Flashing: Installing deck flashing around the perimeter of your deck can help prevent water from seeping in at vulnerable points like ledger boards and joist hangers.
Like under-deck ceiling systems, each type of deck drainage system has its pros and cons when it comes to cost, installation complexity, and maintenance needs. Be sure to consider all factors before choosing the best option for your situation.
Under-Deck Slope Solutions
Sometimes the simplest solution is the most effective one – and that might just be true when it comes to keeping under-deck areas dry. Ensuring that your deck slopes slightly away from your home can help direct water runoff away from the space beneath it.
To achieve this slope, you’ll need to either:
- Adjust Your Deck’s Joists: If you have an existing deck without any slope built into its design, you may need to remove some decking boards and adjust the joists underneath. This will likely require some carpentry skills and potentially professional assistance if structural modifications are needed.
- Install a Tapered Sleep System: For new deck builds or major renovations, consider installing tapered sleepers beneath your decking material. These gradually sloped supports ensure that water runs off the edge of your deck instead of pooling below it.
While these solutions may not provide complete waterproofing protection like an under-deck ceiling or drainage system would, they are relatively low-cost options that can still make a significant difference in keeping your under-deck area drier than it would be otherwise.
Add Waterproof Furnishings and Accessories
Once you’ve done everything you can structurally to keep water out of your under-deck area, don’t overlook the importance of choosing appropriate furnishings and accessories for this space.
Opt for outdoor furniture made from materials designed to withstand moisture and humidity, such as teak or powder-coated aluminum. Look for waterproof storage solutions like heavy-duty plastic bins or weather-resistant cabinets to keep your belongings safe and dry.
Remember, even with the best waterproofing efforts in place, some moisture is likely to make its way into your under-deck area from time to time – especially if you live in a particularly wet climate. By choosing furnishings and accessories designed for outdoor use, you’ll ensure that your under-deck space remains functional and attractive no matter what Mother Nature throws at it!
Keeping your under-deck area dry may require some investment of time and money upfront – but the benefits it brings in terms of additional living or storage space, prevention of damage to your home’s structure, and enhanced curb appeal make it well worth the effort.
How To Keep Under Deck Dry Conclusion
Whether you choose an under-deck ceiling system, a deck drainage system or simply work on improving the slope of your deck surface, remember that any steps taken towards waterproofing this area will contribute positively towards making the most out of every inch of your property.
Now go forth, fellow homeowners! Transform that damp under-deck space into something truly amazing – and don’t forget to share pictures with us when you’re done!