When looking at a metal deck, it can be important to know all of the different parts of the deck and what they accomplish. Take a look with us and learn about the anatomy of a metal deck!


What is a metal deck?

A metal deck, also known as a composite floor deck or roof deck, is a large sheet of metal that is rolled into a ribbed design and is used under a layer of concrete and can be used for both flooring and roofing as well. 


What are the benefits of a metal deck for concrete?

Metal decks add strength to the poured concrete, giving it more durability and causing it to be less likely to crack and shift. Also, it decreases the amount of framing needed and distributes the weight evenly through the deck. 


Floor Deck vs. Roof Deck 

A floor deck is a metal deck that is specifically designed to use with concrete. This goes on the ground and gives added support. On the other hand, a roof deck is a metal deck designed for use without concrete. It’s essentially just metal sheets used as a roofing system and does not include any embossments. It’s commonly used for commercial buildings, but can also be used as siding, trash gates or dumpster roofs, or even platforms in a movie theatre used for luxury seating. 


Side Lap

A side lap is an area on a metal deck that two panels are able to overlap each other and layer together. Not all metal decking has a side lap. There are three types of side laps, the interlocking side lap, the interlocking alternative side lap, and the overlapping side lap. All of these serve a different look and are assembled differently.



A flange is the flat part of a metal deck, at the top or bottom of the ribs. 



The ribs of the metal deck are the indents in between each of the flanges. This can be different depths, which hold different amounts of concrete depending on the job that needs to be done. 



Embossments are used to grip onto the concrete once poured, allowing it to easily bond to the metal deck. They are located on the sides of the flanges in the ribs. 


Metal Deck Spans

Metal Deck Spans are the distance between one end of a metal deck panel to the other end. Often times, there are several different span lengths offered. 


Taking a look at all the different parts of a metal deck can help understand the purpose and how it truly works. Hopefully, this helped further your knowledge of a metal deck!