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Old 04-23-2008, 04:13 PM   #1
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Basement Floor Finishing, Advise Needed

I'm finishing my basement (about 900 sqft) and getting ready to finish the floor. It is a currently a concrete slab flooring.

The new den area will be carpet with an adjacent walk way that will be probably floating engineered wood.

So far, I'm really considering the Dricore product as a subfloor for areas with carpet and engineered wood.

The wood walk way will be adjacent to the laundry room, which I'm considering linoleum. I don't plan on using Dricore for laundry room because I'm told I have to still use a plywood underlayment because linoleum is not recommended directly on Dricore.

Dricore is 7/8" thick.

Question 1:
What underlayment material should I use for the laundry room so when the two flooring meet (engineered wood and linoleum), they will be relatively level?

The bedroom will be carpet (on Dricore) and the adjacent bathroom will be tile. The toilet flange in the bathroom is about 1.5" higher than the slab floor in the basement to make the drain slope.

Question 2: What to do about the flange and toilet? Do I raise the whole floor of the bathroom 1.5" or do I simply raised the floor right beneath the toilet - the toilet is located between the vanity and a wall.

Either way, I cannot use Dricore for tile.

Question 3: What underlayment material should I use so that the tile in the basthroom will be relatively level when it meets the carpet from the bedroom.


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Old 04-23-2008, 08:41 PM   #2
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Hi Leo,

1. Sheet vinyl will be installed direct to the slab. Since the carpet or engineered flooring over Dricore will be "moving", you can install some kind of ramped threshold in the doorway they meet. This threshold can be marble or even wood, although wood will absorb moisture over time.

2.& 3. If the flange is the height is has to be, you can have the bathroom floor mudded to bring it to the proper level. Otherwise lower the flange and install a threshold as in #1.



TILE GUY - retired- TROY, MI - Method & Product suitability consulting.

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Old 04-24-2008, 10:02 AM   #3
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Thanks Jaz...
But I'm thinking I'd prefer to have the laundry room and adjacent walk way to be relatively level.
What do you think about simply putting down 25mil plastic barrier and then a 3/4 t&g OSB fastened to the concrete via tapcom. With the dricore being 7/8" ... I'd only be dealing with a 1/8 difference between the laundry room and adjacent walk way.

Also but by the time finish flooring is put down... engineered wood in walkway, vinyl in laundry room... the finish difference could be as much as 1/4. I think engineered wood comes in 5/16, don't they?

I suppose 1/4 difference is OK... but if there's a better way to getting it closer, I'd appreciate any suggestion.

As far as the bathroom... the flange has to be at height, so did you mean to mud up the whole floor... or just the immediate area of the toilet?
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:15 AM   #4
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Why make things so complicated? Just my thoughts...

Skip the dricore - Carpet and good pad right on slab. vinyl in laundry room, or tile, tile on slab where you want your walkway, not wood.


If you have moisture issues address them outside and under the slab.

As for the flange - Is there ANY way you can lower your flange to meet the top of the tile? if not I would maybe raise the floor in that area only. If the room was large enough I would ask a pro tile guy about a sloping mud bed to grade the floor to the threshold. Over a short distance that would be weird, on a largish room it may not be noticeable.
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Old 04-25-2008, 11:05 AM   #5
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I'm really starting to have second thoughts about using the dricore. The biggest stink for me is where I want to put engineered floor, I can't nail/staple down directly on the dricore. Dricore suggests laying another 1/4 plywood... and they say I also cannot glue directly onto Dricore.

So I'm rethinking the use of it altogether.

I could use floating wood floors, but I don't like the feel of it. I've seen it in another house and I just don't like the feel.

But I definitely want engieered wood floors on the walkway area.

And I've seen enough threads that suggest having some sort of subfloor is a good idea for the "comfort" and "feel to the touch/step" factor. You know what I mean?

So now I'm thinking of still using some sort of subfloor... may be just going with a 3/4 t&g something over 25mil barrier. Some say to fasten it with tapcom... but can't I just use ramset to fasten subfloor to slab?

Then, I think I'd tile the laundry with a cement board underlayment of about the same thickness of the wood subfloor... and same in the bathroom to build-up the floor to the flange. I still have to take a closer look of how much I can lower the flange... but it still will be higher then slab surface... I'm hoping with cement board underlayment... it will help cut the difference. The bathroom is not very big... any slop mod would be noticable.

Your feedback is greatly appreciates. Our house is small... the this added space in the basement is just as big a part of the house as any part... so I wanna make sure it's comfortable... and that's why I'm kinda insistant with the subfloor. But even then, I still get some mix feedback about how worth while it is to use a subfloor. So may be you guys can clear it up.

Last edited by dbbyleo; 04-25-2008 at 11:07 AM. Reason: Typos
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Old 04-25-2008, 11:32 AM   #6
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After doing some more research... I found NOFMA. Specifically,

NOFMA provides to 2 way to retard vapor on slab:
1.) Two membrane asphalt felt method
2.) Polyethylene method

The say use the Polyethylene method in slab that's "well above grade".

I guess using a 25mil barrier for my basement (below grade) would not be recommended, yet I see other posts and even how-to books stating to do so.

May be I'll go with the Two membrane asphalt felt method.

Then they talk about plywood-on-slab over the vapor retarder.
They say to space the panels from each about about 1/4 to 1/2 inch apart. I'm thinking I'd actually like to use t&g panels to keep the panels nice and flush to one another. Can someone explain why I wouldn't want to go with t&g??


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