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Old 07-07-2015, 10:43 PM   #1
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subfloor recommendations for vinyl tiles in basement


I'm planning on re-finishing my basement floor and I need some advice. The floor is fairly smooth, and mostly flat except for where there is a floor drain-associated slope. Although I don't see any evidence for water in the basement, I don't want to level off the area around the drain just in case. I think that for my money and experience level, peel-and-stick vinyl tiles are probably my best option (If you have an opinion on that, I'm happy to hear it!).

Here's my question - what's the best subflooring to put down there? My original thought was to use Delta FL and just stick the tile to the membrane. The tech support at Cosella-Dorken didn't recommend that though, so now I'm somewhat uncertain on what my next option should be. I don't want a subfloor that decreases my headspace significantly, or (because I'm not especially experienced with this kind of project) requires special tools or skills.

What are your recommendations for subfloor for this purpose?

(And I'm happy to hear any other advice you want to provide!)

Josh
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Old 07-07-2015, 10:54 PM   #2
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I guess you've never seen Delta FL, otherwise you wouldn't be thinking vinyl tiles were an option.

For vinyl tiles, you want smooth concrete. Oh.....peel & stick would be about the worst product you could have chosen for a basement.

Jaz
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Old 07-07-2015, 11:15 PM   #3
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Yup, I've never seen it although conceptually it seemed to make sense. But I have no experience with this kind of project so I'm looking for advice from people who do!

My floor is smoothish, but certainly not smooth enough for anything to adhere to it. So, what's the best option in this circumstance?
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Old 07-07-2015, 11:44 PM   #4
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I'm assuming the basement has not had a moisture or water intrusion problem, start with that. Next, determine if it's a humid/musty area. Perhaps do a simple moisture test to see if the floor wicks moisture. This kind of test is best done in the spring after the thaw and after hard downfall. Next decide what the room will be used for and what you like.

If you're going with vinyl tiles it's gonna go right on the concrete. There's other options including engineered hardwood, some laminates and carpeting.

As for vinyl on concrete, you have to have a good smooth, dry and pretty flat floor to start. Can you determine how much slope the floor has by using a long straight edge or using a string stretched tight?

Jaz
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Old 07-08-2015, 10:45 AM   #5
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Thanks for your comments Jaz, I appreciate your advice.

This room will be used as a lightly-traveled TV/game room, but my saltwater aquarium will also be there (near the floor drain, part of the reason why I want to keep it).

There isn't any evidence for water intrusion in the basement, and the floor is always dry, but there is enough humidity that I'm concerned about carpet becoming musty over time. Previous owners did appear to have carpet down there (mustard colored shag!), so it isn't an impossibility. I'll check the slope around the drain, but if I remember correctly, I think there was enough slope that vinyl planks weren't going to be work very well. Based on your comments, I don't think the floor is going to be smooth enough to lay tiles directly down on the floor.

Any other recommendations or thoughts?
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Old 07-08-2015, 01:22 PM   #6
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You can install vinyl tiles even if the slope is kinda severe. You're just gonna haveta make adjustments to correct the gain/loss in length as you go. That takes a little experience to do but anticipating it is half the battle.

If everything else is ok, a slightly pitted surface can be fixed. It would help if you posted a few pics for us to see.

Jaz
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