Concrete Slab VS. Wooden Subfloor
I'm working on a flooring project on the first floor of my 70's built split level home. The foundation is concrete slab with a wood subfloor (2/4 sleepers with 1/6 planks) above that. Currently, I have some of the boards pulled to deal with a mold issue.
I'm at a point where I can't decide if it'd be better to pull the subfloor and put in finished flooring on the slab itself OR repair the subfloor that we pulled and put our finished floor on that.
Now for the question. Given the option of using the slab or wood subfloor, what would you do? We are very open to the types of finished flooring that we use, so take that out of the equation. What is the benefit of using one over the other?
Unless you can significantly improve the ventilation, won't you face the potential for mold problems again if you replace the floor as currently configured?
I don't usually like slabs, they feel cold and hard, but they are nice for tile floors, and you can always get some nice area rugs. Under the circumstances, I might be inclined to eliminate what's not necessary and fall back to the slab.
How would you finish the lower portion of your walls where the subfloor used to be?
What about cabinets, etc? All out already, I would guess.
Will it be odd to have your light switches higher on the wall?
Is there a concrete sill around the perimeter, or do the walls start at slab level?
Lots of questions.
Slab or sleepers??
First and foremost, keep in mind that moisture is the enemy of wood and it will cause lots of problems wit a finished floor. So do everything you can to correct the moisture problem. It's always best to isolate the wood floor from a potentially damp slab by any of the following methods:
* Sleeper system like you have (least effective)
* Installing a floating floor with a good poly barrier/foam between the slab and the wood. (better method)
* Using a moisture barrier like Bostik MVP applied to the slab, and then direct gluing the wood to the slab. (Best method as long as the slab isn't REALLY wet).
Your choice of floors can make a difference as well. Go with a larger manufacturer like Armstrong who reccomends their products for below grade and is likely to stand behind a warranty issue.
Wood Floor Guy
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