Is your basement flooring giving you cold feet? If so, take a look at all of these basement flooring ideas…
Do you dream of your home having a room that is lavishly decorated with richly painted walls and freshly polished and shined hardwood floors to entertain your guests in or simply spoil yourself in? I think if you’re a homeowner that’s definitely a desirable room to have in any house. But what if you want that room to be in your unused basement? Here’s one time when you might want to really think about all those basement flooring ideas before you jump in headlong into a remodeling project in your basement that includes hardwood floors.
Just think about it for a bit. They are prone to all kinds of problems and one of the biggest killers of an expensive basement remodel is flooding. This can be from a huge rainfall where the drainage around the home didn’t do it’s job properly and ended up flooding your basement. Or, a more likely scenario would probably be surrounding the sump pump where it inadvertently quit working and resulted in flooding your entire basement while you were away at work. Occasionally, you might even get a little water seeping in after it rains through your basement walls and ends up ruining a section of the wall and flooring. What if you actually have a bathroom in your basement and you run in, use the facility, and then jet out the back to get to where you were going only to come home later and see that there was an issue in the last facility use and know it’s backed up all over the basement? For most though, the biggest problem with their concrete basement floor is that it just gets damp from time to time whether it’s from seepage or just plain humidity and condensation. Have you thought about this while perusing basement flooring ideas?
Basement floors are just like any other floor in the house except for one simple thing, unlike a regular concrete floor home, these floors are typically built much lower into the ground sub-grade rather than on grade. The problem is that once you get sub-level, the ground gets quite cooler, just dig a little 1 or 2 inch hole into the ground and put your finger in it, I bet it’s cooler than you’d think. Now imagine going 8 to 10 feet down and pouring concrete floor. When that warm air from the inside hits those cold concrete walls and floors, it can’t help but to produce condensation. It’s a simple fact of having a basement and one that you have to deal with. Add to that that concrete is more like a sponge at times due to it’s porosity, with all the run-off and water pressure that can build up along the outside it has no other place to go but to seep through those cold concrete slabs right onto the basement floor. If you have an unfinished basement, check it out for yourself as this can be especially evident if you’ve got cracks and after times of heavy rain.
So what does all this mean. Simple. Don’t use flooring that’s susceptible to water damage. Using appropriate flooring and preparation methods will in the long-run save you from a whole lot of heartache and trouble. If you do end up using something that’s susceptible to water damage, know the consequences and at least formulate a plan of protection surrounding it and some good basement waterproofing methods. Just remember that you could end up paying the price in not only the financial loss off the floor but the time and labor it took you to put it all in. Here’s some other great things for you to take note of if you are looking at basement flooring ideas:
- If you’ve got a leaky basement, take the appropriate waterproofing measures and get it fixed before you start.
- Tile is a great basement flooring ideas. You can install it directly (if it’s clean and flat) to the concrete slab.
- Sometimes simple is better. What about a good floor epoxy base with a neat sponged or striped coordinating color effect on top? There’s a ton of things you can do with this.
Basement Flooring Ideas: Carpet is alright with a basement as long as you take the appropriate precautions. I’d definitely never advise laying carpet directly on the basement floor without some kind of waterproof underlayment or subfloor. If you do, you stand the chance of getting that great musty basement smell that everyone loves and because it’s likely to capture a lot of that condensation, you’ll provide a haven for natural mold growth. Even still, you might find yourself replacing it every once in a while. A better solution if you’re thinking about carpet is to use carpet tiles instead. These rubber-backed beauties are great. You can mix and match and create any kind of patterns you’d like. Plus, if one gets a little worn or damaged, you just replace that single tile instead of a whole floor.
There are some classes of flooring that will need a little bit something more underneath them than that cold, hard floor. Something in the neighborhood of a subfloor. Don’t worry, this is nothng more than a floor that’s built on top of the concrete that’s raised just a little of the concrete itself. This will let all that nasty water dry out naturally or have sufficient room to drain down to a sump pump to be removed. Not only is this good for the drainage, but it’s good for the flooring material as well as it gives you the maximum life cycle opportunities the floor was intended for.
If you go the subfloor route, you have a wide variety of flooring that can be used in the basement. You could start looking into laminates. There are some simply beautiful laminate flooring that can be had fairly cheap. You could go green and use cork. You could even use vinyl or linoleum. On top of a subfloor their great, straight to the concrete not so good, the glue deteriorates and you’ll have tiles popping up and vinyl pulling off all over the place. As I said a little earlier, carpet is good, it’s even better on top of a subfloor.
Basement Flooring Ideas: If you’re dead set on a wood floor, here’s the last alternative for you that’s about as close as you should probably get in a basement. I’d still use a subfloor, but you could do engineered wood flooring for the basement. You still get the look of real wood as unlike laminates that basically use pictures, engineered flooring uses actual wood layers. Those layers are compressed together for the most part and then coated with resin.
There you have it. There’s tons of basement flooring ideas you could go with you just need to prepare and be ready for when disaster strikes. Think about how much it will affect you and how much you are willing to put into it and in the end, you’ll have some basement flooring ideas that you’ll love and will work for your situation.