Roofing Alternatives for Decks
LESLIE: Cheryl in North Carolina needs some help with an outdoor project. What can we do for you?CHERYL: Yes, we have a deck that’s 12×24 and it is two stories in high in that the basement is at ground level in the back, so the deck is pretty high off the ground. But where the roof comes out, it’s – we don’t have enough height to actually put a roof over the deck and I’m really wanting to have a roof over it. And my husband said there’s absolutely no way to have enough slant, enough pitch to keep from having a water problem and I was wondering if you had any ideas about a good way to do that. Our house is 40 years old and he’s not wanting to tie into the roof to create enough slant.TOM: Yeah, that was going to be the obvious first suggestion; why couldn’t you tie into the existing roof, get up enough height and then you could have the slant.CHERYL: Right.TOM: We can’t talk him into that, huh?CHERYL: He’s not wanting to. (Leslie chuckles)TOM: OK. And do you want this roof – let me ask you this: do you want this roof for shade or do you want it for water, too?CHERYL: Well, I guess really more shade than anything but I wouldn’t to create a water …TOM: Well, if you want it just for shade, why don’t we talk about doing a trellis with – or a pergola, Leslie?LESLIE: Yeah, both of those are great ideas. A pergola generally is what you’d call, well, I guess a trellis, too, but a pergola is really a shade structure that can either come off the house or be four-legged and cover this whole deck area completely. And then what you can do for the top, since a pergola usually is sort of open slatting – you know, almost like an Asian-inspired, beautiful, open top – you can either, in between these sort of decorative rails, put in some aircraft cable, which is a plastic-coated metal wire, with some fabric on grommets that would hang down that you could run back and forth to either open it or close it to create shade. Or you could put some sort of trellis wood up there and put some sort of viney, beautiful, green, leafy thing like a wisteria or something that’ll give cover naturally. And both of those do provide beautiful shade and really just create architectural interest to a deck as is.CHERYL: OK.TOM: And I’ll tell you what, Cheryl; just to give you all the ammo that you need to tackle this project with your husband, we’re going to send you a copy of our new book, My Home, My Money Pit: Your Guide to Every Home Improvement Adventure. It’s got a whole section on building an outdoor room; give you some great tips and ideas and hopefully some inspirations to get this project done. How’s that sound?CHERYL: Well, wonderful. Thank you very much.TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.