Wood on concrete

Old 11-02-07, 06:51 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 13
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Wood on concrete

I got a big project, removing carpet and installing engineered wood floors on a concrete slab.

So I got the engineered wood, got 6 mil plastic sheathing as vapor barier, and got enough 3/4" underlayment to cover the whole room.

I definitely need something for vapor barier since our backyard floods too easily. And the underlayment is for nailing the floor.

I was thinking to cover the floor with poly sheath. Put the underlayment at 45 degrees and use 6 tapcon screws to fix in place (that makes a screw roughly at every 4 feet square). Then nail the tongue-and-groove engineered wood. I never did this before, but I think I can manage.

Yesterday on HGTV, I saw they just glued the hardwood on concrete with some king of glue supposed to be also a vapor barier. Wow, that is much simpler (although I have all the materials for the other approach). I definitely need some advise.

I am just doing 200 sq.ft. room for trial now, but the eventual intention is to do the whole house which is about 2,000 sq.ft. So every bit of savings on time and money counts.
Old 11-03-07, 03:58 AM
Familyzoo's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: North East Florida
Posts: 27
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
My wife and I glued down 400 square foot room this past spring onto concrete slab. (We have another room and hallway that we will be doing in December). It was pretty easy and saved us a bundle. We removed the old carpet. Scraped the concrete to remove any glue or crap, repaired any cracks, leveled and skim coated the slab and then glued the floor down. (Of course, there was dry/ cure time between).

Glue ran us about $100 per 5 gallon bucket (buying it locally). Same stuff was $150 plus shipping, over the internet. Not every local flooring store had glue in stock.

Our property gets very wet and stays that way after it rains. I had gutters put up a year ago to direct the rain away from the foundation.

Does your backyard flood to the house? Ever had water enter from flooding? Does the slab have a history of moisture problems?
Old 11-06-07, 08:29 AM
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 0
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Floor Too High?

One problem with hardwood on plywood attached to concrete some may not realize is the effect it may have on existing baseboard, door entries, and kitchen appliances.(providing the flooring goes into the kitchen)

More common baseboard only 3 1/2 inches high can look pretty ugly with the new floor height over one inch, especially after you add any quarter round or shoe molding. Of course if the base is removed and re-installed it will look better. Depending on how the original base was installed or it's quality(some cheap finger joint pine will break into pieces) removing could destroy all of it.

Family Zoo brought up a good point. Poor drainage from the home can play havoc on any new hardwood floor. Have you considered a floating floor? Much easier for A DIY project considereing the amount of area to be covered.

Last edited by the_tow_guy; 11-23-07 at 01:03 PM.
Old 11-06-07, 02:43 PM
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 4,857
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
A lot of extra labor and expense, for nothing, if you ask me.

Prep your concrete, the same as you would have to to put down a subfloor(Flat= 1/8" in 6 feet)

Apply your troweled or roll on moisture barrier.

Pop lines and spread adhesive, and stick your engineered wood down.
Old 11-22-07, 07:11 PM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 48
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
I would do a calcium chloride or some sort of moisture test. If you think you may have moisture issues, that rings a warning bell for hardwood floors. I agree with CDW that nail down is a waste. You may not even need a moisture barrier or your slab may be so wet you could not install hardwood even with a barrier.

Start with the visquene test (duct tape 2'x2' of 6 mil visquene to the floor, sealing all edges. Wait 24 hours and if there is any color change you have excessive moisture). If no darkening of the concrete is observed you are probably in good shape. This is kind of a shoot from the hip test, but it is a good indicator. If there are any doubts at all, do a calcium cloride test. This is not very expensive and is actually very cheap insurance.
Old 11-23-07, 05:12 AM
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Colombia
Posts: 2
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
I may sound idiot, but I'm not, I'm just a 'newbie', but have this question: why should I install wood over concrete, or otherwise?

I have the "Brazilian Walnut" from here:


but was wondering if there's any advantage on mixing concrete and hardwood flooring. Is there, or you're just discussing it because one of your clients required it?

Last edited by HotxxxxxxxOKC; 11-23-07 at 08:16 AM. Reason: removed link
Old 11-23-07, 08:25 AM
HotxxxxxxxOKC's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 7,754
Upvotes: 0
Received 1 Upvote on 1 Post
Putting wood flooring on concrete is done all the time. I don't understand the question?

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: