Buckled Floating Floor - Flooring - Contractor Talk

Buckled Floating Floor

 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 09-26-2011, 10:21 AM   #1
Member
 
larry228's Avatar
 
Trade: residential remodeling
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 71
Rewards Points: 6

Buckled Floating Floor


Hoping for some advice so I can "do it right the second time"...

I installed an engineered wood floor in a dry walk out basement last year. I put down continuous 6 mil poly under the recommended foam underlayment. The 3/8" plywood floor panels are edge glued, perimeter is gapped. The floor has performed well for 11 months.

We've had substantial rain during the past month in central Maryland, this house is sump pump dependent even in moderate weather. A few days after the second major storm, the ho called and said the floor felt funny. In addition, he told me that the gfi receptacle feeding the sump pump had tripped during the storm, but he thought that the water hadn't overflowed from the crock.

I came in to find some significant tenting in the floor, the worst is near the unfinished room with the sump pump. Moisture readings are all over the place. Portions of the floor that are laid flat read 6-8%. The worst areas are 35%, with lower readings in between ( 13-20%) . I scattered masking tape around the room to record the readings, can almost track the flow of water under the flooring across the room.

I set up several fans and a second dehumidifier running continually, the readings dropped by a couple points in a few days, haven't gone back to check for almost a week. I don't know how effective it can be to dry the wood sandwiched between the polyuruthene finish and the vapor barrier. The HO is away, the wait and see approach isn't bothering anyone. She emailed this morning that the floor hasn't changed- not a big surprise, I don't know why it would choose to lay back down even as the wood dries and shrinks. This looks like a replacement project, hopefully at the expense of State Farm.

I would like to assure them that this won't happen again. One area of the basement had been built up with sleepers and plywood subfloor- this is in great condition. I would prefer not to build up the rest of the floor, at least not that much. At the box stores I have seen 'dricore' panels- 24" square osb with a plastic base that floats them above damp concrete, overall adds 7/8" height. I wonder if this would help, or would I just have moldy osb under my hardwood at this point? Has anyone used this?

I've replaced the gfi in the event that this it tripped from age and fatigue, but they could easily have another event if the power failed, etc. - I just hate to put back floor that would be vulnerable to another minor flood.

Any suggestions for what I should do next time?

Sorry for such a long post

Larry
larry228 is offline  

Warning: The topics covered on this site include activities in which there exists the potential for serious injury or death. ContractorTalk.com DOES NOT guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained on this site. Always use proper safety precaution and reference reliable outside sources before attempting any construction or remodeling task!

   

Advertisement

 

Old 09-26-2011, 10:51 AM   #2
Old school Ranger
 
floorinstall's Avatar
 
Trade: flooring
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Shalimar, Florida
Posts: 222
Rewards Points: 152

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


THE FLOOR GOT WET. If there is a sump pump does that mean the floor was installed below grade. If so that is the very worst condition to install a floating engineered floor. There is going to be water and mold under the floor and it will have to be removed. It should be a HO insurance claim if you can prove the pump failed and caused the flooding. If you re-install another floor make sure the manufacture will warrant the floor under those conditions. Personally I would not touch it with any wood product. How about a wood plank tile?

Advertisement

floorinstall is offline  
Old 09-26-2011, 12:51 PM   #3
Member
 
larry228's Avatar
 
Trade: residential remodeling
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 71
Rewards Points: 6

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


The floor was rated for below grade installation, I followed instructions. This is a condition that nobody warrants against, its not on me and I certainly don't blame the manufacturer, there was a flood. I agree with you that wood is wrong underground, but it is offered for that application. I guess it would have been the same outcome if there had been carpet on the floor.
IF you were to do the replacement installation with wood, is there any value to raising it on the underlayment panels or some other product, or would you put back as it was- poly, foam pad and wood floor directly on concrete- as this seemed to be working before the flood. Again, there didn't seem to be any issue with water coming thru the concrete slab.
larry228 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 09-26-2011, 01:36 PM   #4
Old school Ranger
 
floorinstall's Avatar
 
Trade: flooring
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Shalimar, Florida
Posts: 222
Rewards Points: 152

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


If the manufacture warrants it and you installed to specification our off the hook. If the customer insist on putting wood products in that environment you need to make sure that you have a positive drain system that allows water to run off through perforated pie and drain out of the building and . I saw a system like that installed once and they had perforated pipe laid in a trench dug around the room and covered it with gravel. It exited through the foundation to a drainage field like you would see in a septic field. With a floating floor if any water is permitted to seep under the floor it will fail and mold will grow. The insurance company my pay for the replacment once but if you put the same product back in and it fails again they will probably walk away. By putting a positive gravity drain in you could install PT sleepers secured to the cement floor with four or six will plastic laid across the sleeps as a moisture barrier and a plywood sub-floor on top of that and then install your flooring over it.

Last edited by floorinstall; 09-26-2011 at 01:40 PM.
floorinstall is offline  
Old 09-26-2011, 05:50 PM   #5
Pro
 
PSG's Avatar
 
Trade: Remodeler & Radon Mitigator
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Collinsville IL
Posts: 126
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


I've used the Dri core before, it should work well for your application. I would strongly suggest to the customer to have a backup sump pump installed.
PSG is offline  
Old 09-26-2011, 06:43 PM   #6
Pro
 
astor's Avatar
 
Trade: FI
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Austin TX
Posts: 1,349
Rewards Points: 704

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


Even you decide to use DriCore, I suggest using 6 mil poly under as you did before. Wrap up the poly about 6" to the walls, cut excessive after base. Use moisture resistant tape for seaming the poly.
Second for back up sump pump.
PS. At this point it is smarter to deal with insurance company,usually not the same rate as HO.Mo mone!
astor is offline  
Old 10-08-2011, 09:34 PM   #7
Registered User
 
kellyfloors's Avatar
 
Trade: hardwood flooring
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 11
Rewards Points: 10

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


"I would strongly suggest to the customer to have a backup sump pump installed."

Not only a back up pump, but also a back up generator in case of a power outage during a storm.
kellyfloors is offline  
Old 10-08-2011, 10:27 PM   #8
Pro
 
3bar's Avatar
 
Trade: carpenter
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 419
Rewards Points: 492

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


why is the sump pump plugged into a gfi outlet?

are the plywood panels floating? or screwed to the concrete?

personally i would only install a floating floor in a basement over 6mil poly.
3bar is offline  
Old 10-08-2011, 10:29 PM   #9
Pro
 
Sar-Con's Avatar
 
Trade: Civil Construction, Excavation, Concrete + Forming
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Ontario
Posts: 842
Rewards Points: 504

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


Definately agree with some form of sump pump backup - I hear the water powered pumps work well in the event of power outages.

In basements prone to flooding, I would recommend a tiled floor.

But since you're looking at the dri-core, an alternate product is more of a hybrid system - roll foundation drainage (mira-drain or equivilent) and install exterior rated ply (not osb) over that. Then apply floating floor over that.
Sar-Con is offline  
Old 12-14-2011, 09:24 PM   #10
Floors San Francisco
 
hawaii's Avatar
 
Trade: Flooring
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Honolulu Hawaii and San Francisco
Posts: 95
Rewards Points: 75

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


There is nothing you can do on earth to prevent the flooring from cupping if you expose it to high moisture or water leak.
Looks like you did not do anything wrong , floor just got wet and it is not carpet it will cup.
Basement is a tricky place, you have to know what you are doing before you can be sure that nothing will go wrong, follow all manufacturer recommendation, if the flooring is bought from a small Chinese manufacturer that do not provide specific guidelines then you can not be sure what to do simply do not buy it from them or tell the client that you will do what the standards require but can not guarantee.
Say for example the manufacturer does not specific if it can be install in the basement, and if this is just a small provider that is bringing material from China they do not do any test so simply THEY DO NOT KNOW. They are just guessing or telling you yes because they want to sell the floor. Do not buy from them, buy form a bigger manufacture that have very clear recommendation. Follow all the steps.
__________________
Da Vinci Floors surfing and sanding.
Honolulu Hardwood Floors San Francisco I Hardwood Floors Hawaii
hawaii is offline  
Old 12-15-2011, 10:37 AM   #11
Registered User
 
ffflooring's Avatar
 
Trade: Flooring
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Smithfield
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10

Re: Buckled Floating Floor


There are a couple of reasons a you can have coupling problems with your floor. Sometime there is too much moisture coming in the room or house which can cause the floor to coupling. Always make sure that you do not have your windows open all the time especially in cooler weather where it feels damp. Also make sure that the temprature in the house it not set too low to make the house cold. You also need to do a moister test udner the house to see if there is any moisture and where is it coming from. These are things that can help prevent a floor from coupling. I hope you find this usefull.
Quote:
Originally Posted by larry228 View Post
Hoping for some advice so I can "do it right the second time"...

I installed an engineered wood floor in a dry walk out basement last year. I put down continuous 6 mil poly under the recommended foam underlayment. The 3/8" plywood floor panels are edge glued, perimeter is gapped. The floor has performed well for 11 months.

We've had substantial rain during the past month in central Maryland, this house is sump pump dependent even in moderate weather. A few days after the second major storm, the ho called and said the floor felt funny. In addition, he told me that the gfi receptacle feeding the sump pump had tripped during the storm, but he thought that the water hadn't overflowed from the crock.

I came in to find some significant tenting in the floor, the worst is near the unfinished room with the sump pump. Moisture readings are all over the place. Portions of the floor that are laid flat read 6-8%. The worst areas are 35%, with lower readings in between ( 13-20%) . I scattered masking tape around the room to record the readings, can almost track the flow of water under the flooring across the room.

I set up several fans and a second dehumidifier running continually, the readings dropped by a couple points in a few days, haven't gone back to check for almost a week. I don't know how effective it can be to dry the wood sandwiched between the polyuruthene finish and the vapor barrier. The HO is away, the wait and see approach isn't bothering anyone. She emailed this morning that the floor hasn't changed- not a big surprise, I don't know why it would choose to lay back down even as the wood dries and shrinks. This looks like a replacement project, hopefully at the expense of State Farm.

I would like to assure them that this won't happen again. One area of the basement had been built up with sleepers and plywood subfloor- this is in great condition. I would prefer not to build up the rest of the floor, at least not that much. At the box stores I have seen 'dricore' panels- 24" square osb with a plastic base that floats them above damp concrete, overall adds 7/8" height. I wonder if this would help, or would I just have moldy osb under my hardwood at this point? Has anyone used this?

I've replaced the gfi in the event that this it tripped from age and fatigue, but they could easily have another event if the power failed, etc. - I just hate to put back floor that would be vulnerable to another minor flood.

Any suggestions for what I should do next time?

Sorry for such a long post

Larry

Advertisement

ffflooring is offline  


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Floating Floor Question mike052082 Flooring 3 01-17-2010 04:22 PM
Adding 2nd floor to orginal 2 story open room Riccas Construction 13 09-28-2009 11:04 PM
5 Best Hardwood Floor Tips And Save Money Too! Benoakley Flooring 6 08-17-2009 12:49 PM
Job Sequence - New House MHMConstruction Construction 19 12-09-2007 01:14 PM
New Concrete Floor laid, cracking, and sealer Q's. Knyte260 Construction 21 10-06-2007 11:25 PM

Join Now... It's Fast and FREE!

I am a professional contractor
I am a DIY Homeowner
Drywall Talk is for
PROFESSIONAL CONTRACTORS ONLY!

At DrywallTalk.com we cater exlusivly to professional contractors who make their living as a contractor. Knowing that many homeowners and DIYers are looking for a community to call home, we've created www.DIYChatroom.com DIY Chatroom is full of helpful advices and perfect for DIY homeowners.

Redirecing in 10 seconds
No Thanks
terms of service

Already Have an Account?