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Do Underdeck Ceilings Require Maintenance?

The short answer is that very little  in this world is maintenance free. You may hear from a salesperson that a particular underdeck installation does not need maintenance. You will never hear that from us. In fact we recommend that in  the first 3 years after an installation that an inspection be done to check for accumulation of debris, and that any found be removed. The design of our panels allows any individual panel to be removed without disturbing adjacent panels, so inspection is a simple matter, well within the capabilities of a handy homeowner.

Magnolia pioneered most of the features and innovations that keep underdecks as clean as possible for as long as possible. These include:

  • Panels pitched independently of the deck floor above so that sagging decks do not create low spots in the ceiling below, nor do out of level decks hinder the flow to the gutter;
  • Panel designs that do not require support pieces to sit in the panel and across the flow; These will catch debris.
  • Adjustable panel hangers that can remove low spots in the panels should the deck sag after the panel installation.
  • Refusal to use textured panels; These are attractive, but any design that goes across the direction of flow will inhibit the movement of debris toward the gutter.
  • A gutter that is pitched as well as the panels; A level gutter will not drain effectively and debris will eventually build and hamper the flow.

All of these innovations, plus the use of power ventilation  will greatly reduce the need for maintenance, but will not eliminate the need for vigilance. A house on a treeless lot in an area of little rainfall may never need to have its underdeck cleaned, but surround that house with mature trees and closely timed rainfalls and you can count on an occasional cleanout.

Other than cleanouts, the other maintenance question arises from leaks that develop long after the underdeck is installed. Usually flashing is involved, or the use of inferior sealant.  Magnolia uses only aluminum flashing applied with the finest sealant we can buy. There is a “Peel and Stick” flexible roofing product that is easier to apply. It’s a fine roofing product, but it does not hold up in an underdeck application.

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