rotten spots in wood- replace with vinyl planks?


Old 08-30-13, 06:03 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
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rotten spots in wood- replace with vinyl planks?


We are considering selling our home and I am uncertain what to do about our wood floor. It was installed 10 years ago - Pergot cherry wood laminate glued to a concrete slab. I can't help but feel that gluing the floor down with no barrier was a bad decision as the floor developed many rotten spots. Also there are hollow spots in some areas.

We have been looking at replacing the wood in the living and dining with vinyl "wood" planks and carpeting the bedroom and study. I know this will not do much for the house value but the rotten spots are unsightly.

I can't help but think that despite the problems, getting rid of the wood would be such a shame. I wonder if it might be best to have someone come in and repair the spots that are rotten. Perhaps they could use the good wood from the study if they can get it up in whole pieces. That way I can leave the wood in part of the house at least. I would say that we have about a square yard total of rotten wood- lots of little spots and a couple of big ones.

Daughter thinks we should just tear the whole thing out and put in the vinyl. She thinks the floor will just continue to rot and end up being a problem for the next owners. I have not noticed any additional rot- no new spots for the past couple of years maybe.

Please, any opinions on what to do in this situation would be appreciated.
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Old 08-31-13, 12:35 AM
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Interior of BC, Canada
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It's nice of you to consider the new owners! I'm confused, you say the floor is wood but then you say it's laminate... laminate isn't wood, it's essentially a photo of wood covered in resin with a fibreboard base.

Regardless, using wood or laminate directly on concrete prone to moisture is a big nono as you have found out.

If you want to just go by cost vs. reward, you'd have to see how much it would cost to replace the rotten bits. Are you sure the laminate is still commercially available in the same colour?

I'd start by yanking up a couple of the boards and see what it's like under there, since you are going to get it repaired or replaced anyways.
It could be rotten and mouldy all over in which case it's destroyed and you'd have to decide whether you want to cover it up and make it someone else's problem, or fix it. For me it would come down to finances, if you can afford it having new floors is not a bad selling point and you could get your money back through the sale.
Old 08-31-13, 02:36 AM
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It is a wood floor. I thought laminate meant that it was a nice veneer on top of plywood but I had a close look and it looks like it might be solid wood. Hard to tell really because it's so crumbly.

The way I see it, right now we have a beautiful floor with less than 5% of it damaged. If we put in the vinyl planks we will have a new, undamaged floor but it will never be beautiful like the wood is.

I looked closely at the main rotten spot right in the middle of the living room. It happened where the sofa leg sat on it. At first it was just a dark spot that became black. Then the wood broke apart and came out in pieces so that we can see the concrete. It is about the size of my hand and the wood around it looks perfect still. Very baffling to figure out why this happened. I don't see how water could have gotten in there.

I can't afford new wood floors. We can afford the vinyl but I'm a little afraid of it. Not sure if I can afford the repair work. I don't have any extra planks but was hoping that some of the wood from the study, that we will definitely be carpeting, can be somehow pulled up and reused? If not then we will have to do the vinyl. The wood is glued down pretty tightly but I was thinking that a repair expert might know a way to get sections of it up and have it still be reusable.

Thanks for the input-
Old 08-31-13, 02:46 AM
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Could you post a picture or two (not closeups) of the damaged areas so we can see what you see?
Old 08-31-13, 03:42 AM
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Good luck trying to just cut out a section to try and repair it. It's going to be tonged and grooved.
If it really is plywood below it then it's engineered flooring not laminate.
On a slab I would have used a vapor barrier and installed it as a floating floor not glued it down.
Moisture can come right up through a slab floor.
Is there a sump pump in a pit to relieve some of the hydraulic pressure under the slab?

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