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Question DetailsAsked on 4/3/2014

want an estimate for a permanent roof over my large deck. Wonder if I can just cover part of the deck.

My deck measures 25' wide x 14' long. I wonder if I could put a partial permanent roof over about 16' x 14' so that I could still have a grill on the deck. Or would that be a fire hazard to have a grill close to the roof? Initially, there were trees on both sides that provided shade. Now the trees are gone and there is no shade but I still want to have the grill (just a regular-sized Sears grill) on the deck. Any pointers? Can it be done?

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1 Answer


You can roof over any part you want, or all of it.

I hope this is a gas grill, not charcoal - I cringe every time I see a charcoal grill on a deck, and every year about this time as people get out their grills and hibachis there are numerous fires in our areas, including entire condo buildings, that burn because of charcoal grills on a wood or plastic deck, or a gas grill with a leaky fitting or damaged hose that catches fire.

I would also be leery of any fabric or plastic awning or gazebo over any grill unless the awning is at least 3 feet or so away from the house, just in case it caught on fire.

As far a a grill under a conventional roof, as long as you are watching the grill as you should and have a fire extinguisher nearby, I would not be pverly concerned - roofs do not catch fire in a second or two flareup. Obviously, if you can keep it out from under the roof probably better, and a half-width roof like you talking about over a deck is not in the least unusual (usually over the sliding glass door), and you will reduce the amount of possibly stinky oil smoke that gets into your attic through the eaves. Also, the further you keep the grill from the house, the less grease staining and splatter you will get on the side of the house, as well as reducing fire risk.

Personally, we just grill on the back lawn, have the table on the deck, and that way avoid any fire risk and also avoid the smoke and fumes blowing across the table while people are talking or eating.

As far as a roof, if you have headroom it is generally better to drop the deck roof down a bit from the main roof to reduce icing, if you are in an area with snow. The problem you get is the house roof is warmer so it melts off and icicles from sun and house heat, but the deck roof will then ice up if the air temp is below freezing. Therefore, if there is headroom, I like to keep the original roof and gutters intact, and build a totally separate (except for maybe some stabilizing ties to prevent sway) roof or gazebo or whatever for the deck, offset vertically below the main roof eaves, and ideally physically separated to avoid a debris and dampness zone where they contact.

Because the deck roof or whatever will have to have its own foundations, I would see a General Contractor about this, rather than just a roofer - because it requires either footings or using the deck footings, carpentry, and roofing.

Cost varies by materials used and locale and so forth, but as a VERY rough ballpark for a normal sloping shingled roof, assuming there is headroom as the front of the deck for that, probably something in the area of $5000 give or take a few thousand. You could also go with a fixed or roll-out awning for probably half to two-thirds that, if you are not in heavy snow area - or if you go with a rollout awning in snowy or strong wind area. Free-standing fancy Gazebo type surrounds with roof can run from around $35/SF to as much as $100 and more, so could be in the range of $8-20,000 in your case.

If you go with a fixed roof rather than a self-supporting awning, you will most likely need a plan from an architect or structural engineer to be able to get a building permit, though most GC's know one who can do this sort of fairly simple one as part of his contract - but be sure the contract specifies WHO is responsible for any necessary plans and building permit, and if a bidder says no engineers plan is needed, confirm that with your local building department.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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