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kenn 07-24-2005 09:43 PM

underlayment for laminate in Indy/Crawl Foundation?
About to put a quick step laminate floor in the house in indy. It is a crawl space foundation. I believe you are not supposed to use a moisture barrier on crawl space foundations, correct? If so, what underlayment do I use? I want it as quiet as it can be...

CarpenterDon 07-25-2005 11:42 AM

If it is a crawl space then there should already be a vapor barrier attached to the underside of the floor joists (in the crawl space?) If you put one on top you would be creating a vapor chamber and that would lead to a giant headache down the road from the residule moisture in the wood of the flooring system.

If there is no vapor barrier on the underside of the floor joists, then yes, you should lay 3 or 4 mil visqueen vapor barrier over the sub-floor (and tape any seams) and then follow the step in the next paragraph.

Between the sub-floor and finished floor you need to lay what is called a release. A release allows the sub-floor and finished floor to move independently during seasonal changes in moisture (humidity) and dryness, due to the woods tendency to expand and contract. Yes you can lay the rosin paper over the visqueen. It helps to protect the integrity of the visqueen (keeps it from getting torn) during movement between the to flooring surfaces.

Red rosin paper is best suited for this purpose. It comes in 50' or 100' rolls, is available at your local HC and is inexpensive to boot! It is actually a redish/pinkish color and is found in the building materials dept. of the store.

I use it under hardwood flooring, laminate flooring, under tile flooring (between sub-floor and tile substrate,) etc.

While some may recommend using tar paper (roofing felt,) I would not. The red rosin paper is a much better way to go! ;)

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