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Old 07-23-2013, 09:30 AM   #1
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Flooring for basement


Hello:

My basement has walls and ceiling but no floor. Walls are steel stud with the blueboard sheetrock raised a half inch off the floor. The concrete slab floor is somewhat uneven in places and rough in others. When I say rough I just mean it is not a smooth finish but a very rough texture, no cracks or anything.

I did tape down a piece of plastic to check for water and the concrete slab just gets darker in color and damp to touch, no water beads...
I was considering putting ceramic tile down. Is it ok to mud and tile directly on top of the concrete slab or does anything need to be done before hand?

Also, in an area of the basemnet I was going to put some gym equipment. Is it ok to just use rolled rubber directly on top of the concrete as well? Or does some kind of vapor barrier need to be added?

Thanks for any help!

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Old 07-23-2013, 11:00 AM   #2
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Flooring for basement


Have you tried the new vinyl flooring from Home Depot. It is called "allure". We just put it in our main floor LR & DR. The floor is wavy in some areas preventing installation of laminate however, the allure follows the contours easily. Ours looks like hardwood floor but, it is also available in square tiles that look like ceramic. The flooring strips/tiles overlap and stick to each other creating a "floating" floor. They are water proof and come with a 25 year warranty. AND very easy to install. Just cut to length, score back and they snap just like sheet rock/drywall. Everyone who sees them are amazed at how they look. There are some nice colors/patterns available for gym too.

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Old 07-23-2013, 12:53 PM   #3
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Have you tried the new vinyl flooring from Home Depot. It is called "allure". We just put it in our main floor LR & DR. The floor is wavy in some areas preventing installation of laminate however, the allure follows the contours easily. Ours looks like hardwood floor but, it is also available in square tiles that look like ceramic. The flooring strips/tiles overlap and stick to each other creating a "floating" floor. They are water proof and come with a 25 year warranty. AND very easy to install. Just cut to length, score back and they snap just like sheet rock/drywall. Everyone who sees them are amazed at how they look. There are some nice colors/patterns available for gym too.
If I went that route it seems they would present more issues - does the vinyl stick to the concrete? floor is still uneven, does it need anytype of barreri between the conrete and vinyl tile? No issue for you since you did not use in a basement...
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Old 07-23-2013, 02:16 PM   #4
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Flooring for basement


Is it a walkout basement? or completely underground?

When you say the floor is wavy in some places, have you put a straight edge down to see how far off the floor is? I'd say if its much more than 1/8" you are going to have issues with tiles not sitting flush with each other.

What size of tile would you put down?

You wont have a problem taking thinset right to you basement floor to put tile down but I'd want to get a little more information prior to suggesting tile

Last edited by brockmiera; 07-23-2013 at 02:16 PM. Reason: Spelling
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Old 07-23-2013, 03:59 PM   #5
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Is it a walkout basement? or completely underground?

When you say the floor is wavy in some places, have you put a straight edge down to see how far off the floor is? I'd say if its much more than 1/8" you are going to have issues with tiles not sitting flush with each other.

What size of tile would you put down?

You wont have a problem taking thinset right to you basement floor to put tile down but I'd want to get a little more information prior to suggesting tile

Basement is underground. Yeah, more than 1/8". That is why I was going to mud the floor first to get it level. Some sections will be thicker than others of course, but I wanted to know if that would be an issue mudding directly on the concrete. I figure the mud would be about 1/2-1' to level and then put tiles pon topI was thinking just 12x12 tiles but it is a large area 30x20 I may go a bit bigger...

And is it ok for the mud to go up against the blue sheetrock?
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Old 07-23-2013, 10:34 PM   #6
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Flooring for basement


ZEPHED666 As I said, the vinyl tiles/strips overlap and stick to each other creating a floating floor..we did not wqant to attempt leveling compound or sand however, the undulations are quite dramatic ( up to 3/8ths inch..but, the good point is, it is water proof and can be laid on concrete..it is worth a visit to HD to take a look at this system of flooring..as long as your floor is fairly smooth it should be fine OR you could pour self leveling concrete then apply allure flooring....or perhaps ceramic tiles. However I am not sure about the application of ceramic on concrete but, I'm guessing probably OK. At least try the allure in your gym areas. I think you would love it.
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Old 07-23-2013, 10:38 PM   #7
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I used Delta -MS under 3/4" t&g for my basement renovation. The basement is much dryer and raised the temps 5+ deg F all winter. Poured self leveling concrete for the bathroom area, then tiled over the top with Ditra. The main areas we covered in Adura. No lifting, bubbling or anything else you read about in these forums for vinyl planks on concrete.

Overall it raised the floor less than 1 1/4" with the tile being another 1/2".

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Old 07-23-2013, 10:43 PM   #8
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Flooring for basement


Wait a bit on your mudding the floor.

I would spend some time on the floor with an 8' straightedge or level and map out your (hopefully) low areas. Sometimes you can even see them.

Let's say you have a low spot here and there. Outline these with a pencil. You can even pour water on them and see them.

Now you can come back with some floor leveler and take out the low spots, at lease the worst of them.

This stuff will cost you $25 for a five gallon bucket's worth, so hopefully you won't need too much. But this is surely less labor and cost than a mud bed.

As for the tile, keep them as small as possible, especially if you haven't laid tile before. I haven't laid anything bigger than 16".

There is nothing wrong with a 6 or 8" tile.
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Old 07-24-2013, 08:30 AM   #9
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Wait a bit on your mudding the floor.

I would spend some time on the floor with an 8' straightedge or level and map out your (hopefully) low areas. Sometimes you can even see them.

Let's say you have a low spot here and there. Outline these with a pencil. You can even pour water on them and see them.

Now you can come back with some floor leveler and take out the low spots, at lease the worst of them.

This stuff will cost you $25 for a five gallon bucket's worth, so hopefully you won't need too much. But this is surely less labor and cost than a mud bed.

As for the tile, keep them as small as possible, especially if you haven't laid tile before. I haven't laid anything bigger than 16".

There is nothing wrong with a 6 or 8" tile.

My understanding about floor leveler was that it does not really adhere to concrete. I thought it just crumbles over time...
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Old 07-24-2013, 09:48 AM   #10
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Basement is underground. Yeah, more than 1/8". That is why I was going to mud the floor first to get it level. Some sections will be thicker than others of course, but I wanted to know if that would be an issue mudding directly on the concrete. I figure the mud would be about 1/2-1' to level and then put tiles pon topI was thinking just 12x12 tiles but it is a large area 30x20 I may go a bit bigger...

And is it ok for the mud to go up against the blue sheetrock?
If you are having reservations about self leveling compound then deck mud will work fine. I would however map out the low spots as suggested by another poster before you go too far.

No it is not ok for the mud to go up against the sheet rock. you will want to keep the drywall 1/2" - 1" above the height of your finished floor. The base moulding will cover up the gap.
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Old 07-24-2013, 05:41 PM   #11
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Flooring for basement


Techpappy, Allure would not be suitable for this application. The persistent moisture in the concrete floor would cause eventual failure of the glue joints.

Last edited by MaineLL; 07-24-2013 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:25 PM   #12
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Is this just for all basements I general? I was looking at allure for my basement floor too.
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:05 AM   #13
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Techpappy, Allure would not be suitable for this application. The persistent moisture in the concrete floor would cause eventual failure of the glue joints.
Also when Allure fails, it is hard to get the company to honor the warranty.
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Old 08-19-2013, 06:58 AM   #14
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My understanding about floor leveler was that it does not really adhere to concrete. I thought it just crumbles over time...
Properly primed---mixed and applied---self leveling compound will be a permanent fix---

Only installer error would cause a failure----Mike----
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Old 08-19-2013, 10:15 PM   #15
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I haven't had a problem with the self-leveling compound and have used it 1/2 dozen times on concrete as well as on wood floors.

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