How to Repair a Basement Subfloor


A basement subfloor replaces the original floor of the basement by covering it. A normal basement floor is just the concrete that was originally poured. You can install carpet and wood panels directly onto the concrete, but doing so is not practical.

If there happens to be a burst pipe or the house settles, you will find that the concrete flooring could crack. A basement subfloor is installed over the main concrete floor as a way to properly create a main floor. The basement subfloor will also provide a softer surface which will adjust with the settling of the home. A basement subfloor can become damaged, but they are easy to repair. This article will explain the steps to repair your basement subfloor.

Identify the Damage

The most common damage you will find with a basement subfloor is a broken, loose, or squeaky section of the floor. This typically means the wood is broken. The screws or nails can also be loose, which will cause the boards pull loose. Either of these issues will most likely require you to replace board sections. Once the damage is located, access the basement subfloor.

Remove the Cover

Remove any coving from the basement subfloor, such as carpet, linoleum, or tile. Doing so is rather easy. For carpet, cut it with the utility knife and pull it from he basement subfloor. It is important to remove all of it. This carpet can be replaced once the subfloor has been repaired.

Linoleum is removed with a scraper. Score the linoleum, then use the scraper to push it from the subfloor. Ceramic and natural tile are a little different. If you plan to change the floor completely, then chip and scrape the tile from it. If you want to save the tile, use a tile saw to cut the grout, then carefully pry off each tile.

Remove the Damage

The easiest solution to repair a basement subfloor is to simply remove the damaged area. Look for the screws or nails that hold it to the joists. Once the screws or nails are removed, you can remove the plywood section with the crowbar. Never remove just a damaged, section as it will be impossible to replace it. Installing a full or half sheet of plywood is easier than using smaller pieces. It also strengthens the floor.

Repair the Basement Subfloor

Replacing the damaged section is not at all difficult. Place the new piece of plywood over the joists. Nail the plywood down, or use screws for an even stronger basement subfloor. Place 1 screw (or nail) every few inches along the joist. Put them in the center of the joist for the strongest basement subfloor.