I am going to put this one out to the masses. I recently became stumped with what to do with the basement floor. Unfortunately, the stump”ness” came about after I tore the whole thing up.
If you don’t know me all that well, I oftentimes shoot first and aim later. At first, I thought this was bad, but later on, I realized that by doing this, I don’t mosey around over-thinking the whole thing. Since many of my projects come out very decently, I intend to stay this way.
Ok, here goes. We have this finished basement that is very dry. It has a concrete floor that used to have carpeting covering the majority of area and those linoleum tiles covering the rest. There is a dehumidifier downstairs keeping any moisture in the air down to a nice level.
Yesterday, I decided to peel up the linoleum tile and carpeting. This took me a few hours, but it’s all nice and clean now. I cut the carpeting up into squares and took up the underlayment. Everything is now out in the garage. As for the sticky goo, underneath the tiles, I used mineral spirits and a brush to get that up. Then, I used Simple Green to clean the entire floor.
Why did I do all this? Well, for one, I don’t really like carpet. I like hard wood or tile. Dogs like to pee on carpets and dust mites like to live in them. Also, I never like to think about what’s growing under a carpet, especially in a basement. Even thought basements feel dry, there is always moisture coming through the concrete. That doesn’t sit well with me.
The basement floor is in very good shape. It’s dry (as I mentioned above) with no cracks. There is one small hairline crack, but it’s hardly noticable. There are gaps between areas where they poured the concrete.
My initial idea was to tile the entire floor. We pretty much had tiles all picked out. Then, I started doing a little research on the internet. That may have been a bad move. One guy says, “Yeah, go ahead and tile right over the concrete.” The next guy says, “Sure, you can tile down there, just use cement backer board.” The third guy says, “You can’t use cement backer board on concrete.” This goes on and on across any number of websites. It seems like no one knows what in the world they are talking about, but love to give uninformed opinions. I am going to call the tile guy who did the old house for advice.
Since my reading, I have had some other ideas. I thought that we could put down a bamboo floor or laminate. I promised myself that I would never use laminate again, so that’s going to be hard.
What I am looking for is ideas and advice. Will those gaps in the concrete affect the tile? Will temperature differences from outside to inside make the tile crack or pop up? There is going to be a pellet stove down there too, so the temperature will be quite different from outside, especially when it’s a cold January night.
By the way, we don’t mind a cold floor.