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Polycarbonate and Vinyl Building Panels by Onduline North America

TUFTEX® DeckDrain™ Installation Along Joists

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TUFTEX DeckDrain Installation - Detailed Instructions Video on YouTube

TUFTEX® DeckDrain panels can be installed to run parallel to the joists.

To install TUFTEX® DeckDrain panels parallel to deck joists, a method to create “slope" must be built using wood strips. (TUFTEX® panels are then attached to these strips.) These wood strips are applied perpendicular to the joists in a cross-brace fashion (see photo and diagrams below). In order to create the necessary slope, the strips need to be thicker or lower as they move away from the structure (Fig. A) and in the direction of the desired water flow. TUFTEX® DeckDrain panels are then attached to these wood strips.

DeckDrain Alternate Method Installation - slope stripe applied perpendicular

Figure A: Example of slope strips applied perpendicular to joists.


These instructions are simply a basic guideline. Each deck is unique and applications will vary.

  1. Determine the direction of water flow
    Important: Water should flow away from the house. When using this installation method, the TUFTEX® Slope Building Brackets will not be used. Instead, a slope will need to be built using wood strips. If you want to install the TUFTEX DeckDrain panels perpendicular to joists, please see our instructions for TUFTEX® DeckDrain Installation Across Joists or call 800-777-7663.

  2. Estimate your necessary materials
    1. Panels: Multiply (L) X (W) to get the total number of square feet of your deck. Add approximately 10% for endlaps. Divide by two (2) to get the number of linear feet of TUFTEX® panels needed. Then divide by the length of the TUFTEX panels and round up to the next whole number for the approximate number of panels you will need.
    2. DeckDrain Fasteners: It will require approximately 30 TUFTEX® DeckDrain fasteners to properly attach each 10’ panel. More fasteners may be necessary in climates where heavy icing may occur. REMEMBER: 1 box equals 100 fasteners.
    3. Wood Strips: The quantity, length and thickness of the wood strips will be dependent on the size and dimensions of the deck (and necessary slope). It is recommended that the 'Installation' portion below be read and understood first, as it will aid in determining the quantity, length and thickness of the required wood strips.

  3. Installation
    Cut and install slope strips: Wood strips are applied perpendicular to the joists, approximately every 24" leading out from the structure. Each strip will become thicker as you move away from the structure, creating a slope when TUFTEX® DeckDrain Panels are attached to the strips (See Figures A & B). This slope should be a minimum of one inch (1") drop for every 10’ of run.

    Deckdrain fastener locationInstall TUFTEX® DeckDrain Panels: Panels are attached to wood strips using TUFTEX® DeckDrain Fasteners. Fasteners are attached in the uppermost portion of the panel (peaks of the corrugation), not the lower corrugations (valleys). Fasteners are attached to every other peak and should be staggered from one row to the next.

    A one-corrugation side lap is necessary. If lapping panels end-to-end, make sure that water will flow over lap, and use a 4" or greater overlap in these areas. Fasten in the all the peak corrugations at end laps. Wait to install the side lap and end lap fasteners until subsequent panels are installed.

Hints: Increasing the slope (or drop) of the panels will result in fewer leaks. To increase water tightness you can seal end and side laps with vinyl adhesive caulk. Gutters can be installed to collect and direct water from panels. Use opaque panels. Translucent panels will show underside of deck and debris. As with any guttering system you will want to clear debris as needed. This can usually be accomplished with high pressure water.

DeckDrain slope building strips diagram

While panels are non-flammable, be careful as excessive heat rising from barbeque grills being used on patios or decks with TUFTEX® panels installed above may deform or warp panels.

Questions? Call 800-777-7663


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