Currently, the porch uses tongue and groove boards that are painted. I think they might be original to the house. Whenever it rains hard, water will get on the porch. The water sits there in puddles. I'm assuming some makes it down underneath.
The porch wood needs replaced. I cut up a corner of the porch where the wood was sagging and the top 1.5in of the 2x10 joists is rotted away. I'm assuming that the water puddling is leading to the decay of the joists.
Underneath the porch is just dirt with some construction trash from when the house was built. There are two vents on either side of the porch built into the brick.
My question is: would it be ok to replace this wood with a decking type material with a gap between the boards?
My concern is the water that makes it down underneath. It makes it down there now because the wood is in no way stopping it but would having gaps somehow exacerbate the issue?