A Boathouse Roof Deck Renovation on HGTV with Duradek in a Starring Role

A boathouse roof deck renovation is a critical component to increasing the investment value on a lakefront vacation rental property. It is a coveted lakefront feature and a destination highlight for visitors.

When renovating a boathouse – or any part of an investment property – you need products with proven reliability to protect your investment. This is especially true when considering waterproof protection. In addition to reliability, you also need the waterproofing product to provide value and performance longevity without ongoing maintenance requirements or the worry of water intrusion and rot.

Boathouse Roof Deck Renovation Needs the Best Solution

When celebrity builder Scott McGillivray approached Duradek for his personal investment property, Duradek was up for the task. The project was the grand finale and the biggest challenge featured on Scott’s Own Vacation House Rules on HGTV Canada – The Boathouse. Scott had used Duradek before and knew it was the perfect solution for this Boathouse renovation.

Boathouse Roof Deck Renovation Project Video Excerpt

Excerpt compilation of Scott’s Own Vacation House – The Boathouse as seen on HGTV, now streaming on Stack TV

The Problem

Leaky Roof Deck on Lakeshore Boathouse

The roof deck on this coveted lakeshore boathouse was almost 1,600 square feet. It could have been the perfect area for hosting gatherings at this vacation rental property. Unfortunately, the state of the boathouse roof deck at the start of the project made it terrible to look at and unpleasant to walk on. The more serious problem, leaks were allowing water to make its way into the boathouse below.

The deck surface was an unsightly green artificial turf that collected dirt and water, making the deck an unpleasant area for practical use. It was saturated with moisture and had become moldy. Even worse, the waterproofing below the turf was failing. All the water that the turf collected had accumulated and eventually leaked through the failed membrane. Below the deck, the boathouse ceiling had visible mold and other signs of water leaks. The longer the leaks were left unaddressed, the more expensive the repairs from water damage would be.

Water damage on roof deck of boathouse
After pulling back the artificial turf, waterproofing issues became evident. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

When the artificial turf was removed from the deck surface, the leak issues became more evident. The moisture damage was obvious with the seams lifting and rot beginning to set in. In the areas adjacent to full-length windows and door openings (areas most vulnerable to water leaks), previous patch jobs on the membrane did not solve the leak issues and were also failing. They needed a permanent solution.

Boathouse roof deck renovation removing old surface
The job starts by removing the old artificial turf deck surface. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

Scott was familiar with Duradek, so he knew it was the perfect product to solve the problem. Since Duradek is rated as both a deck pedestrian surface and roofing membrane, it was the ideal product for this boathouse roof deck. 

The Duradek Solution

Boathouse Roof Deck Renovation – Substrate Preparation

After the failed membrane was removed, they could see the plywood below it also had moisture damage. The crew replaced the plywood sheeting with new un-treated ¾-inch T&G plywood. The substrate was prepared for the membrane by patching and then sanding down high spots and seam areas for a perfectly level surface. The substrate provided a 2% slope to allow for proper water drainage off the rooftop deck, so no drains were required.

Replacing plywood sheeting in a boathouse roof deck renovation
The failed waterproofing let water make its way to the plywood below, so in this boathouse roof deck renovation, all of the plywood needed to be replaced. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

Once the plywood substrate preparation was complete, the Duradek installation team from One Stop H2O Solutions arrived to apply the Duradek membrane. First, they applied PVC coated drip flashing to a routered edge at the outside perimeters, then filled and sanded again.

Duradek applicators prepare the substrate in a boathouse roof deck renovation.
Proper substrate preparation is the start of a successful vinyl installation. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

Boathouse Roof Deck Renovation – Duradek Legacy Driftwood Application

They rolled the membrane out the length of the deck with seven pieces (or passes), and proper measurements were double-checked.

Duradek applicators roll out the Duradek vinyl waterproof membrane in the boathouse roof deck renovation.
Duradek applicators from One Stop H2O Solutions roll out the Duradek vinyl. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

The membrane was adhered to the plywood with Duradek’s proprietary contact adhesive. This method requires the application of contact glue to both the plywood deck surface and the membrane to activate the bond.

application of contact adhesive on a Duradek vinyl membrane installation on a boathouse roof deck renovation
Duradek’s proprietary contact adhesive is applied to both the plywood substrate and the vinyl membrane. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)
Duradek vinyl installation on a boathouse roof deck renovation
Scott McGillivray joins the Duradek applicators from One Stop H2O Solutions to adhere the Duradek vinyl decking to the plywood substrate. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

Once the membrane was laid out and adhered to the surface, it was heat welded to the PVC Coated flashing at the outside perimeter.

Boathouse roof deck renovation welding Duradek membrane to pvc coated flashing
The Duradek applicator from One Stop H2O Solutions welds the vinyl membrane to the PVC-coated flashing. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

Then each length of vinyl was heat-welded to the next, using a 3-pass hot-air welding process. This method ensures each seam that joined the 6-foot widths of the Duradek vinyl is completely sealed, wrapping the roof deck with water-tight protection.

The most critical part of this whole rooftop is getting done, and you know what? It looks amazing.
– Scott McGillivray

The Duradek membrane is a fire-rated, classified roofing membrane. All aspects of keeping the building envelope protected from moisture are considered in its application. That means all points of vulnerability like door openings and deck-to-wall transitions are completed with waterproofing details to ensure reliable waterproof performance. At walls, the membrane is extended up 8 inches and then covered with building paper, so the water sheds overtop the membrane with no chance of reaching the structure at these transition spots. At doorways and full-length windows, the membrane is wrapped up the sill.

Duradek vinyl application on a boathouse roof deck renovation.
After a long day, the Duradek application is nearly complete. (Screenshot from HGTVs Scott’s Own Vacation House)

Now, the boat house below would be protected from water damage with no chance of moisture coming through the roof deck above.

With the vinyl installation complete, the railings and the pergola were able to be completed. Finally, it was furnished for leisure activities. The textured surface of the Duradek vinyl makes it a slip-resistant walking surface, comfortable on bare feet. A bonus is that it is easy to clean with a light pressure wash. Water will simply flow off the edge of the deck below the railings.

Boathouse Roof Deck Renovation – Before and After

Project Note

The most important factor in this project is that the roof deck is waterproof for the duration of the membrane’s 20+ year life expectancy – without the need for waterproofing maintenance or concern. For an income property with a short rental season, the ability to keep amenities open without the need to shut down for regular re-application for waterproofing maintenance is a huge advantage and part of the long-term value of the Duradek membrane.

Find the full episode of HGTV’s Scott’s Own Vacation House on Stack TV.

The Duradek waterproof membrane on this roof deck was installed by Duradek Dealer, One Stop H2O Solutions based in York, Ontario.

Download the PDF of Case History #195 – Boathouse Roof Deck including Installer Details.

Locate a local Duradek Dealer for your projects here – duradek.com/find-a-dealer.

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