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Lochside: Weatherproof Stone Tile Deck

Project Scope Remove and replace rotted roof top deck with a new weatherproofing system and slate stone tiles

Location Central Saanich

Project Description

The Flintstones team removed and replaced a rotted roof top deck with new slate stone tile deck, complete with a garaunteed weatherproofing system.

Project Story

Our clients’ beautiful home in Central Saanich perched atop a hillside overlooking Cordova Channel features a large front-facing elevated deck that is situated on top of a lower living area of their home. Our clients love the space to relax, entertain, and enjoy the stunning ocean views. Unfortunately, the enjoyment went away when the deck ceased to hold up to structural and cosmetic standards.  The 900 square foot slate tile deck had been heavily damaged due to improper masonry installations and weatherproofing system failure. The water intrusion issue they were faced with, was likely a major problem for most of the seven-year life of the home.

Upon our initial site meeting, we observed many indicators of deck waterproofing system failure. The surface of the entire deck was an instant giveaway. In between almost every stone tile was a white powdery substance known as efflorescence. In this situation, the efflorescence was caused when moisture moved under the stone and back out through the mortar or grout of the stone leaving a salt-like residue behind. The second clear indication of moisture was the condition of the surface of the stone; large shards of the tiles were flaking and cracking off (known as spalling) which is due to the seasonal freeze/thaw cycle and efflorescence.

We receive an immense amount of precipitation here on Vancouver Island and it is extremely important that the materials and practices used during construction will resist the heavy rains (and even the corrosive salty environment along the coasts). Any water damage to an exterior deck can easily transfer to the interior living space located immediately below it resulting in a more costly and invasive repair. Furthermore, in order to install tile on flat roof decks without any future issues, reliable systems must be used by extremely knowledgeable tradespeople.  Unfortunately, in this case, it was clear: the incorrect tiles and waterproofing system were used resulting in water run-off issues.

When our clients approached us to do the work, that meant they would be provided with a comprehensive renovation experience. Our skilled carpenters, masons and waterproofing crews work together under the guidance of one project manager to restore the deck to the highest quality. The unity, fluidity, and efficiency of the crews belonging to one team as a whole allows for open communication and convenient and speedy scheduling and installation.  It also means that through our combined experience and years of testing different methods and products, our clients would receive the most valuable return on their investment and a construction project that would last for years and years to come.

It was time for the project to begin. The Flintstones team was to deliver a new, attractive, waterproof, and structurally sound deck.

We enlisted the assistance of one of our trusted engineers. Consulting with an engineer allows us to confidently and efficiently meet all code requirements. At Flintstones, we have built relationships with extremely skilled engineers in Greater Victoria who specialize work with the same types of projects that we do. These relationships prove to be very rewarding for our clients as it means that we can combine our experience to find solutions to any problems and deliver a successful project down to every last detail. In this particular case, it was important to consult with an engineer as the pre-existing deck, being situated above a living area, would have weight constraints and other structural considerations that could affect our success. We also had to consider which types of stone tile would be possible to install on the waterproofing system that we’d be using. The ideal stone tile would need to withstand environmental exposure, have the ability to withstand the anticipated volume of foot traffic, and resist abrasion and water absorption. What stone fit the criteria and would look beautiful for this project?  24×24 basalt flamed top tile.

Once planning was complete, we prepared the site. Our team built scaffolding to reach the elevated deck from the outside of the house, installed planking systems to safely walk between work areas, laid two layers of ram board (tough cardboard) to protect the interior flooring and hung a multitude of drop-cloths to protect the interior walls and furniture of the home for when interior access was required.

Now it was our turn to utilize our team of experts to install an almost entirely new deck. Using the highest quality materials and our signature methods, step-by-step we began the installing the deck substructure, sheathing, waterproofing base, membranes, flashing, mortar, and stone.

Important considerations were:

  • Massive area to work with – one main deck and two smaller decks
  • Reinstalling the deck with a predetermined slope so as to allow for water run-off
  • Tying the membrane into the wall and flashing the area appropriately which would require the removal of the lower course of Hardie siding surrounding the deck
  • Use premium rapid setting mortars, grouts, and sealants
  • Allow for adequate clearance from the door threshold to the deck surface to allow enough space for the built-up tile assembly

Our work included the removal and reinstallation of all patio doors and windows complete with sealing, caulking, painting, and interior finishing. It also included the removal and reinstallation of the existing railing system and gutters.  The results were not only watertight, but the finished deck was spectacular in appearance…perfect for entertaining. No more structural deterioration, unsightly discolouration, flaking or cracking stone, efflorescence stains or interior leaks to worry about. Our clients expressed their extreme happiness with the end result and now have peace of mind their valuable home is protected for a long time to come. Over the years, our clients have continued to choose the Flintstones team for a variety of additional home improvements.

This particular project is a good reminder to all homeowners: whether you have already noticed visible signs of damage to your deck or you suspect there may be a moisture issue in any other area of your home, contact a professional right away. Our specialists can thoroughly inspect the areas and provide expert insight into where the issue started and offer solutions that will last the lifetime of your home. Approaching any issues in a timely manner could mean the difference of a small repair versus a large restoration project. Let’s protect your investment–we’re here to help.



We love having Flintstones do our small and some not so small jobs fixing things around our home. It has always been a pleasure to work with Mike P. and his team. When I see the name Flintstones while riding my bike or on of your vehicles I get a smile on my face thinking ‘there go the good guys’. Flintstones does not stop until it’s all done to your satisfaction. We can and always will recommend them highly.

Moira-Anne S.