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Old 04-18-2013, 08:05 PM   #1
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


First off, thanks to anyone for the responses. I am planning the hardwood install over a crawl space. I'm leaning towards solid but possibly engineered. I tested the moisture content of the subfloor with a general meter with pins. Results ranging from 11-12 percent. Is that pushing it too close. I live in the St. Louis area and it has been raining on and off for the last 4 days. Would it b

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Old 04-18-2013, 09:05 PM   #2
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


http://www.woodfloorsonline.com/tech...oodwater4.html

Make sure there's a 6 mil. plastic vaper barrier on the ground in that crawl space.

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Old 04-18-2013, 09:15 PM   #3
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


There was sheets randomly spread out. I took it out and put down black 6 mil over the entire ground
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Old 04-19-2013, 12:28 AM   #4
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


I hope you didn't just spread some plastic and call it good. Seams must be overlapped and taped. The idea is not to give ground moisture vapor a path to your flooring. Even untaped seams will allow MV through.

Your new flooring comes with instructions. In those instructions should be information about the percentage of moisture allowable. It could be stated that subfloor and hardwood should be within 4% of each other. It depends on the product and the construction (solid is different than engineered). Most critical is the acclimation of your material to the room. It's not measured in hours or days, it takes what it takes.

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Old 04-19-2013, 05:13 PM   #5
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


I overlapped them about a foot, but didn't tape it. I guess I'll be heading back down there. So I need to seal the edges to the foundation also? How should I go about that.
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Old 04-19-2013, 05:15 PM   #6
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


The manufacturers say not to exceed 13%. 12 seems to be cutting it close to me.
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:36 PM   #7
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


I am a hardwood installer from the De Soto area south of St. Louis. I would go with an engineered hardwood. It is much more stable than solid. As Jim said you must acclimate to wood to the areas being covered. In our area I have alway keeped the moisture content of the wood and subfloor within 2%, 3% at most. As stated, how ever long it takes, it takes. I just finished a house in Florissant (1400 SF) that took 3 weeks to acclimate. With the engineered floor you will find less shrinkage in the winter when the heat comes on. Solid will be much more noticable gapes.
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Old 04-19-2013, 09:08 PM   #8
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


I've looked at tongue and groove engineered to nail down and click lock engineered. The click lock seems appealing. Any opinions?
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Old 04-20-2013, 06:17 AM   #9
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


Purchase the wood with the thickest wear layer you can afford. Some of the engineered woods have a very thin wear layer and will not last as long. Get the best your wallet can afford. As far as nail or click, I don't believe it matters as long as your subfloor is flat enough for the floating click lock.
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Old 04-20-2013, 01:26 PM   #10
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Subfloor moisture content for hardwood


Floating is easier then nail down of course but you alos will get a "hollow" sound that most people do not care for. Engineered flooring is more stable but your situation sounds like you are within the parrameters needed for solid. Keep in mind that solid floors can be resanded more then engineered. No matter what you do make sure you put a moisture barrier under the flooring itself. Your crawl space size and venting is also a factor.

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