Every roof, whether residential or commercial, has some form of roof decking. This material is what provides structural support to the shingles or other exterior roof coverings. Roof decking can be made from a variety of materials, including plywood, oriented strand board (OSB) and even concrete. But the decking must be in good condition for your roof to be structurally sound. Over time, the roof decking may sustain a not insignificant amount of damage. When this happens, it’s important to know the cause of the damage and the reason why you can’t repair it yourself.
Different Types of Damage to Roof Decking
There are a few different types of damage that can occur to roof decking:
- Water Damage
This can happen if the roofing material has been compromised and has allowed water to infiltrate the system. If water damage to the deck isn’t promptly dealt with, mold and mildew will start growing on it, causing the decking material to swell, warp or break down over time.
- Physical Damage – Things like hail or fallen tree limbs can damage the decking upon impact, leaving cracks or holes that need to be repaired. Physical damage can also occur if you walk on your roof and accidentally step on a weak spot in the decking material. When this happens, consider looking into getting it fixed.
- Fire Damage – If a home has sustained fire damage at some point, the effects may cause the decking to buckle or char. While this is not as common as water or physical damage, it is still possible (especially if you have an older home).
Why You Can’t Repair Damaged Roof Decking
Once roof decking has been damaged, it is not possible to repair it. This is because the damage has likely weakened the material and has compromised its structure. Attempting to repair damaged roof decking would be like trying to patch a hole in a boat – it might work for a short period of time, but eventually, the damage will cause failure and you’ll be back at square one (or worse-a collapsed roof).
The only way to fix the problem is to replace the entire section of the decking. This means removing the old, damaged material and installing newer, sturdier material in its place. This can be a big job, but it’s important to make sure that it’s done properly in order to avoid any further damage to your roof.
If you think you might have damaged roof decking, it’s important to call a professional right away. Willi Roofing Services in Austin, TX, has over 20 years of experience dealing with all types of roofing problems. We can inspect your roof and let you know if the decking needs to be replaced. We’ll also work with your insurance company to make sure that the repairs are covered. Contact us today at (512) 394-8234 to schedule a free consultation.