What is Roof Decking?

Although the term “roof decking” may draw blank stares from most homeowners, it’s one of the most crucial parts of your home’s roof – something we can all agree is pretty important. Read on to learn more about what roof decking is, what it’s made of, and how long it usually lasts. We’ll also give you the 411 on what to do when your roof decking has exceeded its lifespan (spoiler alert: reach out to a professional!).

What is Roof Decking?

One of the most fundamental components of your home’s roof, roof decking (or “roof sheathing”) is the wooden frame that supports your actual roof. Just as your house’s foundation provides a stable base layer to support the structure of your house, your roof decking provides that same base layer for your house’s roof.

Types of Roof Decking

There are two basic types of roof decking materials: plank decking and sheet decking. Regardless of type, roof decking materials are fundamentally comprised of wood.

Plank Decking

Plank decking is less common these days (although it can be found in older houses). At its most basic, plank decking refers to roof decking that is constructed from long planks (usually 1×8’ boards) laid alongside each other. Plank decking can also refer to tongue-and-groove decking, which is most common in homes that do not have an indoor ceiling and offers a more rustic aesthetic effect.

Sheet Decking

Sheet decking is by far the most common choice in modern roofing and is usually constructed from either plywood or oriented strand board (OSB), which is made from compressed wood chips bonded together. These roof decking materials are exactly what they sound like: large, flat sheets of wood connected across joists to form an even base for the roof.

How Long Does Roof Decking Last?

In general, roof decking can be expected to last through two roof replacements. That said, it’s not uncommon to repair or replace small sections of decking during a roofing project, as different sections of your roof experience different degrees of wear.

Replacing Roof Decking

Unfortunately, unless you’ve noticed obvious signs of damage or rot on your roof (e.g., missing/curling shingles), it’s difficult to know if your roof decking needs replacing until your old roof is removed. That said, the news that your new roof will also include new roof decking doesn’t need to come with a side of sticker shock. A good contractor will be able to estimate costs in the event your roof decking needs to be fully replaced (and will not recommend full replacement without a thorough evaluation of your roof health).

Why Choose Perimeter Remodeling for Your Roof Decking Project

We love a good DIY but installing roof decking should always be left to the professionals. The experts at Perimeter Remodeling are experienced roofing contractors and are proud to be one of the most trusted businesses for Atlanta homeowners, whether they need a new roof or other home renovation project. Reach out today for a free consultation!