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Accidental Painter
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I go to a new clients (referral) house today to do habdyman stuff. Turns out shes been doing all the remodeling herself over the last 5 yrs (quite well too).

Then she asks me a question I could not answer....

In her basement she had glue down carpet. So she decided to lay down allure on top of it. Somehow, water is seeping through the floor.

Now, naturally I inquired about previous water issues. She said the carpet never was wet.

I asked what she used as an underlayment. She said nothing, just went on top of the carpet.

She is wanting to know if I can do anything. The walls are painted white, & show no water staining. So it's not coming from the walls.

Obviously, I gotta find the leak. But how?

Can I pull up the allure and salvage it for re-lay?

If this is wrong forum, mods move it.
 

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"Vinyl plank has this problem. Water vapor going through concrete, through the carpet then condensing under the plank. "

That's stupid as hell. Condensing under the plank? On top of the carpet? What the effing eff?

Whatever this is, it sure as hell isn't vapor emission. It could possibly be hydrostatic pressure (extremely rare), but I'd wager there was a topical event that got the water under there and now it can't get out.

You can tear up that Allure stuff and put it back together using Konecto adhesive, but good luck not messing it up on the tearout.
 

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This offers a nice opportunity to explain how vapor emission works.

It's all to do with Relative Humidity. (Relative is the operative term there, boys and girls.) Say you encapsulate a slab with something impervious like vinyl. Now say the slab was emitting vapor (E-vaporating) at a particular rate before. What happens when you cover it up? Well, the humidity directly over the slab will eventually reach 100% (there is no 110% Relative Humidity). As soon as this happens, there is no more vapor emission. Why? Equilibrium. Water doesn't evaporate into water. It evaporates into air, but not into air that is at 100%Relative Humidity. It can't hold any more water.

Also, there is no "vapor pressure". If water is being pushed through a slab, that is hydrostatic pressure. Major deal killer. 99.9% of the time it's being pulled by the environment over the slab through evaporation. This isn't to say that a wet slab isn't the culprit, but it needs conditions on top in order to make vapor. Sometimes dewpoint is a killer too, but that's also pretty rare outside of places like grocery stores.
 

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Accidental Painter
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
We have had this snow pass through (6") and initially that was my thinking. Its melting & the ground is saturated.

However...this floor has been laid 3 seasons now. And we have had some decent rain/snow storms in that period. Maybe it finally was too much?

I just cannot believe that the carpet never got wet. It may not have shown as easily as it does with the vinyl, but surely it got wet.

I want to think the slab weeps. But I don't know how to prove it.

She has lived there 6 yrs. 3 with the carpet, 3 with the vinyl.
 

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Another possibility is that , because it's over carpet, it's full of little portals/failures that are acting as little chimneys and condensed vapor is collecting at them. Seems like a wildly improbable scenario, though. I still say its a topical event. They've mopped the stuff and water has gotten under every single time.
 

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I did some work on a buddy's basement. The Pergo he put down had popped in the middle of the room by a doorway.
I traced it back to a leaky/rusted bulkhead door, wetting the slab. Moisture transferred right under the exterior door leading to the bulkhead stairs. I ended up installing a new Bilco door, and adding a gutter. Problem solved.
 

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Drift

Research and find the best basement waterproofing company in the area and then recommend that your client call them.
The reason I say this to you is that you DON'T want the liability for water issues in the future.

You need to step aside and do the demo, and rebuild after these guys find and fix the problem.

You'll thank me later. Don't mess with this one on the causal end.;)
 

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coffer: if i tear it all back to concrete, spray a sealerr, then put a secondary plastic vapor barrier down will that help?

Well, almost anything will help. If you're going to do all that, though, you might as well see what's been going on. Like I said, if it's true hydrostatic pressure (a head of water moving through the concrete) nothing will fix it. There are companies out there claiming they can fix it with some topically applied magic potion. I call bullshot.
 

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Coffer search Allure Flooring and water vapor condensing. This problem has cost the manufacturer $$$. I meet a contractor that does their warranty and he makes a good living fixing this issue.


How can you be a flooring contractor and not know about water vapor transmission through concrete slabs? Sheesh, the stuff you don't know but comment on as if an expert. Do some research.

BTW, the manufacturer now recommends sealing concrete before using the product in basements.
 

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Coffer search Allure Flooring and water vapor condensing.

I so tire of you proud, ignorant jackasses. Do some research?

I sold truckloads of that stuff when Metro brought it to market, genius. The problems stemmed from adhesive failure and a lack of dimensional stability, not moisture. What do dickwads like you get out of this? You could learn something if you weren't so desperate to feel like a man.

Vapor transmission? Just what the hell is that supposed to be, professor anonymous? Is it a stick or an automatic? Uggh. You people make me sick. You prefer ignorance to knowledge.
 
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