How to Build a Rooftop Deck with a View – Some Considerations


A deck is one of the ways to contentedly enjoy the outdoors. And there are plenty ideas of how to add a deck to your home living. Also, you can put your deck in many different locations. More particularly if you merely have a small-sized yard, there is one of the attractive choices, namely a roof deck.

In this place, you may design and add your own comfy open-air seating or gathering spaces, or just a landscape for growing and displaying your collections of living plants. Or else, you can hold such an outdoor festive celebrations or special occasions if you want to.


Adding a roof deck indeed offers several benefits over simply constructing a second-story deck. Before going through step by step of how to build a rooftop deck, first you must make sure that your roof is able to support the deck. In finding for sure that your roof is safe for this project, of course, you must ask or even hire a professional. However, you still may do some checks and planning yourself to know whether your roof can support a deck or not.


Even though you essentially need a professional’s help to ensure that your roof is in good enough condition to hold a deck, there are actually many signs of impairment or deterioration that you can check yourself to find a good information if your roof requires repair before you build a deck. In this case, you can look for signs of water damage, such as water stains on your home. Other visual marks of problems can be like cracked brick or similar materials, deteriorating caulk, peeling along the roofing material or areas that seem like to have a slope or that enable water to puddle.


By and large in order to have such a safe installed rooftop deck, the roof itself needs to be able to support about 55 pounds of weight per square foot. Still, this calculation may differ depending upon what you blueprint on using the deck for. As an example, if you wish for installing something hefty like a planter or a hot tub, the deck and roof may need extra load-bearing capacity. For this special demand, you need to ask an engineer about how strong your roof is. This is not something you should do without experience due to the dangers involved in a miscalculation.

You need to keep in mind that no matter your plan with your deck, its construction must fulfill the minimum requirements of the local building code.


Alongside with the broad-spectrum strength and condition of your roof, you must conform that the roof is able to handle water and support a deck without leaking. The reason is that when the deck is in place, fixing a leak underneath it can be somewhat challenging.

It’s also better for you to make certain that your roof has a high-quality covering and that the roofing material itself is in prime condition. There are some particular methods to make sure that you don’t have water problems with your new deck. For example, you can add membranes that guard the roof or aid water roll off the deck surface. Furthermore, it’s also such a good idea to design the deck hence you can access the roof beneath in the case of a leak.


Once you know that your roof is in good enough condition to build a deck, you will still need permits to start building. In this case, you can call the local building department to discuss your construction plans and learn about the permitting and inspection processes. Moreover, you will probably need to submit detailed construction drawings and possible neighborhood notification materials, which are notifications to your adjacent neighbors regarding your plans.


Technically, building a deck over a flat roof is very comparable to building a deck over a concrete patio. These decks are frequently denoted to as “floating” for they are not held in place as a stand-alone structure. In other words, they are simply “added” on top of another structure.

In short, as previously discussed, your roof needs to be strong enough to hold up 55 lbs. per square foot. After that, you are required to apply a watertight EPMD rubber membrane over the top of the roof deck for pursuing protection against water infiltration. EPDM is a rubber like sheet used for waterproofing surfaces.

Flat roofs are inclined to leaking even without decks due to some causes like design errors, inappropriate materials, and incorrect installation. When roof decks are installed they usually impair roofs resulting in more severe leaking and drainage problems. Therefore, you need proper waterproofing for a roof deck that will involve applying an EPDM membrane and flashing around deck supports and rail penetrations. This is frequently achieved by installing EPDM boots that appropriate over the openings. Roofs should be sloped about ¼” every 12” to shed water.  Drainage is very essential as pooling water can cause leaks.

Then, you must install what-so-called “sleepers” – a flat 2×6’s laid flat every 16” – on top of the roof surface, as this will offer the surface to attach the decking. Moreover, you can find registered pedestal systems that deliver a very stable, level and serviceable deck over a roof membrane.

You also need to keep in mind that maintenance for cleaning and upkeeps of the membrane beneath is suggested. Your deck “panels” should be built in which it can be lifted with least effort or damage. You need to clean and inspect the roof underneath at whatever intervals you find it compulsory for each deck. For instance, a deck placed under pine trees are going to require much more looking after to clean out debris compared to a rooftop deck above a high-rise.


A lot of decks are basically raised patios. People add a deck to their rooftop due to many several reasons. Other than the convenience of walking out of the second floor of your home out onto your deck, one of the best reasons to build a deck is undeniably the view. Your rooftop unquestionably offers better views compared to other landscapes in your home living. Whether it is sunsets or sunrises, city skylines or the hilly countryside, a rooftop deck is able to deliver such spectacular views and a cozy area to sit down and enjoy them.


Roof deck installation has some resemblances to and variances from other types of decking. The biggest difference is perhaps, unless the original roof was specially designed to hold up a deck, the installation takes place usually on a slanted or sometimes rigorously slanted surface. This may cause a slight tricky installation and accessibility.

But don’t worry! You can overcome this problem with some ideas. The most common method is to make an opening in the roof and transform a portion of the attic into a roof deck or a patio. In the case that you already have access to your roof but can’t create it into an attic, you may construct the roof onto the deck. However, you will still need to ensure your roof can endure the additional weight of the deck before you continue.

The similarity with other kinds of decking is that the cost of the deck still typically boils down to how big you want your deck to be and much weight the deck needs to support. If you have no experience working with both decks and roofing, it is best to let a professional do the installation.

Tree Landscaping

The position of existing trees or planting new trees is frequently considered as a significant matte for your rooftop deck project. Trees near your roof deck can offer such a secluded ambiance. Just because you’re on your deck doesn’t mean you want to feel the entire world can spy on you. Moreover, in the case of you or a household member has a fear of heights, you may use a well-placed tree or two to change the visual surrounds of the deck and relieve feelings of fear. Or, you possibly prefer trees that are not going to totally cutoff your view.

Accordingly, prior to build your deck or plant new trees, it’s better to take note of what lines-of-sight you want to preserve and which can be obscured.

Building Steps for Rooftop Decks

If you happen to own a luxury of a large roof, perhaps you feel the necessity to build the deck right next to the roof access. You think that the best place for a roof deck is near the top or at the far of the roof. Or else, often times, you can take extra materials from your deck project and add steps on your roof leading from the roof access to the deck. These steps will enable you to create your way to your deck safely and comfortably. Once more, you need to ensure that your roof is able to accommodate this additional installation.