CHICAGO Roof Deck & Roofing Issues 2024

In Chicago, rooftop decks offer numerous advantages, such as stunning your friends, captivating your date, or relishing a private view far from the city's commotion. A rooftop deck surpasses a ground-floor one without question. While both are desirable, a rooftop deck is a prestigious feature in Chicago, where every inch of space counts. Hosting gatherings on your rooftop in downtown Chicago signifies you have accomplished what many only fantasize about.

A rooftop terrace offers stunning views of the neighborhood and the possibility of enjoying an enhanced perspective of the city skyline, Lake Michigan, or even catching a glimpse of a Cubs game at Wrigley Field. Let's admit it, in a city like this, having ample square footage helps shape your social presence. It contributes to your unique Chicago experience and uncovers opportunities for homeowners that were previously undiscovered before embracing rooftop living. Considering all this, rooftop decks must surely be a major attraction for prospective homebuyers in the Chicagoland area, don't you think?

The value of these structures can vary significantly. When constructed and cared for appropriately, they can enhance the value of a property. However, if they are built or maintained inadequately, they can lead to a plethora of costly issues.

What Is A Roof Deck?

If you're envisioning a roof deck, it's essentially a flat rooftop transformed into a patio. In the past, the go-to material for this was tar and felt paper. Typically, builders would place 2x4 wooden pieces on edge directly on this surface to construct the deck. To provide additional support, some would also include another piece known as a "sleeper." This setup was done on top of the existing tar and paper roofing, complicating any future repairs or replacement of the roof.

Currently, a common practice is to install roof decks on rubber roofs or modified bitumen roofing membranes. These roofs consist of layers of rubber sheets fused together to create a durable surface. The top layer is coated with a glossy outdoor primer to extend the membrane's lifespan. While this type of roofing can withstand more damage compared to traditional tar and paper roofs, it still needs regular maintenance to remain in optimal condition, which can be challenging when a roof deck is built on top of it.

When considering renting or buying a property that features a rooftop deck, it is crucial to thoroughly comprehend the materials utilized in its construction. It is advisable to conduct further research to uncover any prevalent maintenance issues associated with the material. Neglecting these issues could result in significant roof damage or even a disaster, potentially turning your purchase into a risky investment.

What to Know About A Home’s Roof Deck?

If you are considering buying a home and the seller mentions using the "sleeper" strategy to construct the roof deck during your visits, it is advisable to inspect the roof again before making a final decision on the purchase. In this method, the "sleepers" are placed directly on the roofing material and may shift due to factors like condensation, humidity, or weather variations. Their movement can result in damage to the roof where they come into contact with it, especially when extra weight from people or snow accumulates. This damage can lead to cracks, leaks, and potentially water damage over time.

Some prospective home buyers think that having a warranty on the roof guarantees their safety. Unfortunately, this is frequently not true. It's important to carefully review the warranty terms. You will notice that any roof deck installation will invalidate the warranty. This is because it complicates roof repairs for professionals, so it's crucial to understand this before making a purchase.

What Else to Check Roof Decks For?

Drainage is crucial in Chicago due to the unpredictable weather that can swiftly shift from snow to sunshine within days. The city receives a significant amount of rain and snow annually, largely influenced by its proximity to Lake Michigan. This weather pattern poses challenges for flat roofing systems, which heavily rely on gravity, drainage poles, and gutters to manage the excess water. When the drainage system gets compromised, water accumulates and infiltrates the areas where the roofing material was installed, or in the layers of rubber. Fluctuations in temperature can also lead to the separation of rubber layers, resulting in inevitable leaks that will require repair.

A well-constructed roof deck should incorporate a drainage system comprised of high-density foam material designed to efficiently direct water towards the gutter outlets. This component is crucial in ensuring a well-built roof deck and must be in proper working order. It is important to note that any problems with the drainage system can lead to issues with the roof itself, which could be problematic for prospective home buyers, particularly post-purchase. Prior to finalizing an agreement, thoroughly inspect the property's drainage system.

What’s the Best Roof Deck Material?

Water-resistant tiles made from wood and arranged in a square pattern, similar to parquet flooring, are the top choice for constructing a durable roof deck without causing damage. These tiles feature rubber on their undersides to evenly distribute weight, reducing pressure points usually associated with traditional "sleepers". Their interlocking design helps prevent slipping, minimizing roof wear, while the raised rubber bottoms effectively direct water towards drainage systems. This option stands out as the most cost-effective and efficient solution available.

A more cost-effective option compared to water-resistant tiles would be sponge rubber mats commonly found in children's playgrounds. These mats can be utilized to establish a temporary roof deck that is both safe and budget-friendly, as well as low-maintenance. Although not a permanent solution, this serves as a fantastic choice for individuals who prefer a non-permanent roof deck. Additionally, these mats are available in various colors, allowing you to add a touch of vibrancy to your gatherings!

Is A Roof Deck Worth It?

A well-constructed and well-maintained roof deck can indeed add significant value to a property in Chicago. However, it is essential for potential homebuyers to conduct thorough research to avoid any disappointment or unexpected issues related to what may seem like a luxury feature. Take the time to investigate the materials used in the construction of the roof deck to ensure you are well-informed when considering a new property purchase.

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Illinois's Roofing Company

For all your roofing needs or any other roof-related services, reach out to the reliable team at Taurus Roofing & Siding. They guarantee to provide your roof with exactly what it requires, without any unnecessary extras. Offering transparent pricing, full licensing and insurance, and decades of experience serving the wonderful city of Chicago, calling (312) 238-0408 is the best solution for your roofing issues.

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