Best Solutions For Cold Basement

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Did you ever experience keeping your feet down on an icy cold basement? If you are using your basement, you necessarily have to make arrangement for keeping your basement warm and avoid that icy feeling. There are many ways that help you keep the basement warm. Here are some of the popular options, enabling you to choose one that best suits the type of flooring you may have.

Install Radiant Floor Heating

Radiant floor heating is considered to be the best for basement floor heating. It’s as comfortable as if sitting on a warm seat of your car! This kind of heating heats the floor itself. In this case the tubing containing hot air or water is installed beneath the basement floor or at the back of wall panels. Heat is transferred from the heated tubes to the floor which gets heated in turn.

As all the heating arrangement is beneath the floor it’s not visible. If you decide to go for this kind of heating, keep in mind that it uses water which could harm your wooden floor. So you need to be careful of the kind of floor you choose for this kind of heating. Normal wood flooring may not be very desirable, though laminate wood flooring should be fine. You can search the web and look for other suitable materials.

Laying A Subfloor

The next option for keeping basement floor warm is to have carpeting. If you want this system to be really effective this is the way to proceed. First of all you need to have polystyrene sheet of 1 to 1.5 inch thickness on the concrete basement floor. Next, you cover it with plywood of 0.5 inch thickness. This will need to be fastened with screws through the predrilled holes. Now, you can cover it with a basement flooring of your choice that will keep the basement warm.

As you can guess this arrangement will add to the height of the floor by a couple of inches. If that’s an issue with you, you have to look for an alternate way of sub flooring which may not be as simple as the earlier ones but will add to the height of the floor by just about one inch. That involves using wafer boards glued to a layer of rubber to keep moisture away if it were there. So, you have a lot of options for selecting basement flooring to keep it warm.

Some Other Options

Other than the already mentioned, you still have many other options for keeping the basement warm. If the basement is large you can consider heavy duty electric heater, whereas for smaller area a propane heater will solve the purpose. You can also install a fireplace. Other options would include ceramic heaters and baseboard heaters. It all depends upon the area to be heated and how much your budget is for the purpose. It pays to do your research and take the opinion of an expert.

Engineered Bamboo Flooring For Your Kitchen

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Compared to tile or hardwood flooring, engineered bamboo flooring makes a beautiful, durable, eco friendly and cost effective option. When thinking of ideas for remodeling your kitchen within a tight budget it makes sense to have bamboo flooring for these five good reasons:

Advantages of Bamboo Flooring in Kitchen Remodeling

engineered bamboo flooring

* Eco-friendliness: The bamboo generally employed for flooring grows very fast. Some varieties used for the purpose of flooring can grow as fast as four feet in a matter of twenty-four hours. When you cut the bamboo plant for being used as flooring, it’s from above the roots of the plant, thus allowing a new plant to grow in place of the old one. Compare these features to any hardwood plant like cherry or oak that takes decades to get matured. Harvesting of hardwood tree means you are killing it and then waiting for the next two decades for a new tree to get matured.

* Durability: Bamboo employed for flooring is exceptionally hard and long-lasting. Its hardness is comparable and at times more than that of oak. Characteristically, the non-carbonized, lighter bamboo flooring colors are longer lasting because the bamboo fibers are not subjected to too harsh a processing. Generally, it’s better to be using the lighter beech or blonde colored bamboo for floors that are likely to face high traffic or those floors that are likely to get spoiled due sliding or shifting of furniture or falling of heavy objects.

* Installation Options: Engineered bamboo flooring is especially adaptable. Installation of floating bamboo flooring with interlocking is very quick and needs no special glue or nails. It will be a very logical option to install a floating floor on top of an existing floor material of the kind of vinyl, which is cumbersome and expensive to dismantle, because the new floor can just be fixed on top of the existing one. Another benefit of having a floating installation is that in the event of the floor getting damaged due water or any impact, the damaged portion can be removed and repaired quite easily. Though all fresh flooring materials should be installed on as leveled a surface as possible to get excellent results, floating engineered bamboo fixed on top of a quality subfloor can to a good extent bear many flaws of the subfloor.

* Beauty: Bamboo floors come in a variety of colors with rich textures and tones. Carbonized bamboo looks quite like knotty pine or antique oak. Lighter finishes give a clean and smart look that goes very well with modern kitchens. If you like to have a more rustic look, go for darker hand scraped finishes.

* Affordability: If you spend time surveying the market for flooring materials you will realize that the prices of bamboo flooring are quite comparable and at times lower than hardwood and tile floorings. Moreover, installation costs, especially in case of floating bamboo flooring are lower.

bamboo floors kitchen

Ideas to Consider with Engineered Bamboo Flooring

There is no such thing as “a perfect floor’, but bamboo flooring has characteristically excellent quality due the way it’s manufactured. The wearing surface of bamboo is matched with a layer of wood, generally pine or some something equivalent, thus making the product durable and convenient to work upon.
You should be extra careful of the thickness of the top layer of bamboo. Higher thickness gives more durable floor. Areas of homes with high moisture content that damages the flooring should better be installed with solid bamboo flooring rather than engineered bamboo.

Bamboo Flooring Installation

For any DIY enthusiast, installation of bamboo floor is quite an easy project. However, it is good to rely upon the services of a professional installer in case of rooms with difficult angles and curves. Though it may work out to be more expensive, but the results are appreciable. Here’s a useful tip: Looking for a good installer is facilitated if you consult some realtors in your areas, especially the ones who undertake renovation of homes or those with clients who regularly get their homes renovated.

Versatile, Inexpensive Bamboo Flooring

Versatile and reasonably priced, bamboo flooring is a stylish option for making your kitchen or any other room a beautifully warm and welcoming place.

Basement Flooring Options When Remodeling

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Basement remodeling is an immensely popular project that thousands of homeowners decide to undertake every year. A well-planned and finished basement can be put to many practical uses that vary from being just a guestroom of the visitors to a complete entertainment room.

Choosing basement flooring for any part of the house is quite a tricky affair, all the more so for basements. The reason is not far to guess, as we all are aware that basements are typically prone to attracting moisture from the atmosphere. That somewhat imposes limitations on the choice of flooring for the basement.

Any basement remodeling project would necessarily involve some means of getting rid of the most of the moisture therein. Here is a very simple test to assess the moisture content in you basement floor. Take some non porous material, like a black trash bag and seal it using an adhesive tape around a couple of different points on the floor of the basement. Let it remain there for 24 hours and then check underneath the material. If you notice any condensation of water vapors, it means your basement needs to be treated for getting rid of the moisture.

Having taken measures for making the basement dry and on finding the results satisfactory it’s time to look for an appropriate flooring material for your basement. Here are some of the more popular options, helping you to choose one.

Engineered Hardwood Flooring – Here is a modern material that can better withstand moisture than the conventional hardwood flooring. Being thinner than the natural hardwood, it allows for installation of additional insulating material, which in most vases is desirable, if not essentially needed.

Laminate Flooring – For a moderately dry basement, laminate is the best way to get the looks of hardwood without spending a lot of money. However, some laminates are not so well suited for floors that have even a little bit of extra humidity. You would do well consulting a flooring specialist to know the right laminate before investing into one, for a damaged hardwood flooring is beyond economical repairs.

Ceramic Tile – In their case the subfloor needs to be just dry enough for holding on to the adhesive. So, you have to pay some extra attention while the subfloor is being prepared.

Flooring Options that may not work well – Considering the expense and the likely risk associated don’t make it worthwhile to install low grade of hardwood floor. Engineered hardwood is definitely a better material for floors below ground level and the results are very satisfactory and beautiful.

Even carpets in the basement may be risky. You should understand that even a basement that you might consider dry is sure to have more moisture content than the rest of the house. It’s a natural phenomenon that can’t be helped beyond a point. Having a carpet over the entire basement is an invitation to mold and mildew that ultimately is sure to ruin the carpet. But, you may still have the comfort of using a carpet there by incorporating a couple of well positioned area rugs.

Carpeting Basement Floors And Taking Care Of Mold

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I have my office in the basement of my home. That allows me to have large space of around 700 square feet to work in with all the needed furniture, not only for self but for the visitors too. There is a large desk that includes a TV and all the electronic paraphernalia that you’ll find in any corporate office.

Moisture is a problem therein, not that it ever got flooded. My basement can be treated as dry. But being below the ground level, it attracts moisture. It’s my dehumidifier that makes me realize of its presence - it gets filled up twice a month in winters and now and then once a day when the humidity rises.

Carpeting Basement Floors

I often wonder if my carpet would remain as dry in the absence of a dehumidifier! Would my carpet get sprayed with water? And what happens to the volume of water that the machine is unable to collect for whatever reasons?

Moisture can enter even new constructions despite the provision of a moisture vapor barrier. A French drain around the house or the gutter system could be the cause of it. And, let it be known that moisture leads to mold.

As one can’t see mold around or feel it in the air that one breathes, you are left wondering what’s so bad about mold!

I'm not an expert but I conducted a bit of research on the subject of mold. Mold has tiny spores, with hundreds of thousands of them capable of fitting on the head of a pin. They can penetrate thru our immune system to enter into our lungs. On entering the lungs they can get in our bloodstream and oxygen and may permanently scar lung tissue. Some of the common symptoms are: colds, fatigue, headaches, dizziness, and shortness of breath among others.

Fortunately I enjoy good health, yet I can feel it at the end of a day’s work in my basement office.

One way out is carpeting basement floors with area rugs. Applying concrete stains or having sealed decorative concrete floor coatings helps to contain mold. Maintenance of sealed concrete becomes easy and helps preventing building up of mold.

One big benefit of having area rugs is that they keep the basement warm and are conveniently rolled up for being sent to the cleaner. They are conveniently replaced or removed. But, the slight limitation is that you can’t have light easily moveable furniture on the rugs. That’s because frequent movement of furniture adversely affects the life of rugs.

It’s comfortable walking on a wall to wall carpeting. But, it’s frequently glued down on the floor, meaning you wouldn’t like to have it replaced too soon, especially with all the tastefully bought furniture for your office cum home. That’s because it’s quite a task to get them unglued and the subsequent removal of dried gum from cement floor is a tough job indeed. Did you notice that wall to wall carpets have tack strips that have been hammered down along its edges? As you remove them, the holes get exposed and need to be suitably filled up using filler.

Here’s a tip for you if you plan to use your basement more often. Rather than having wall to wall carpeting or even area rugs, you would be better off with a decorative concrete coating!

Basement Floor Paint - Choose The Right One

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While remodeling your basement, application of the right kind of basement floor paint is of prime importance. You wouldn’t like to apply some paint that is too hard to clean or wears off too soon. That’s what makes it so important to choose the right material for applying on these floors.

The best known paints for such applications are known as epoxy based paints or simply epoxies. Though primarily developed for industrial application due rough and tearing circumstances over there, they were eventually found ideal for certain domestic application, like basement or garage flooring.

Basement Floor Paint

Epoxy paints are extremely durable and highly resistant to chemicals like oil and grease. That in effect makes them ideal for use in garages or the porches.

Additionally, these are waterproof, and we all know how prone the basements are to humidity and the accompanied dampness. These epoxies are known to raise the heat resistant characteristics of paints.

On the whole, these paints don’t need much maintenance. They offer easy application and are highly durable, the reasons that they were found highly desirable for industrial applications.

The most durable basement floor paints are the most expensive too and are cent percent solid pints, followed by 40-60-percent solids. Because of the price and the durability features these are primarily found desirable for industrial uses, making them rather unviable, as far as economy goes, for domestic applications.

The type of epoxies used for domestic purposes are water based and much more economical to use. Moreover, these are conveniently available at most hardware stores

And, for the convenience of homeowners these are available in very many colors. That’s an important consideration not to be ignored if you plan to use them, as you certainly would want the color to go along the rest of your cooler scheme that’s already there in the basement or the intended room.

Application of these paints is not really difficult. The only thing you need to ensure before applying such paint is that the surface be prepared by thorough cleaning so that there is no dust.

In short you have to take care that there are no imperfections on the floor before application of such paints. The ultimate quality of output largely depends on how well you prepared the floor. Another factor is the purpose for which you intend using your basement. If it is gong to work as a storehouse for all the household junk, it doesn’t really matter how well you prepared the floor.

It is important to carefully plan and purchase your paint. Keep the area of the room and its functionality in mind, and even what you might like do with this room in the not too distant future. If you are the type who likes to have frequent changes of color or d├ęcor of the room, choose your paints accordingly.

Using concrete sealer gives a better finishing touch to your basement floor, in terms of looks, as well durability. Isn’t it nice that epoxy kits and the connected hardware needed for their application are available at most hardware stores!

The Cost Of Laminate Flooring

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I've got few emails about my last post so I decided to write a bit more about laminate flooring for basement. Since you guys wanted to know how much will this kind of flooring cost you, here is another long post for you all. I hope it will help you determine the real value of basement laminate flooring so you can install one in your own home. Enjoy!

The cost of installing laminate flooring for an average-sized basement of about 100 square feet varies from $600 to $ 1500 and would largely depend upon the kind of laminate flooring you decide to have in your basement. The wide variation in price is due type of laminate flooring that may be glued laminates or glue-less variety or a floating flooring. Further, depending on the kind of flooring, you need many different tools for an installation of the same.

A helpful feature of floating laminate floors is that it doesn’t require many tolls and the installation is rather easy. On the other hand, glue less laminate floors or the glued laminate floors necessitate the use of many tools for getting the flooring right. In any case you have to prepare your floor before you proceed with the installation of a laminate floor. the list of tools for the purpose includes a pry bar for removing and trimming the shoe molding, a level to check that the floor is evenly leveled, a cold chisel to pull out the cold flooring and a ball-pen hammer to hit the chisel. You’ll also need a putty knife for preparation work and a floor scraper for removing all the residue from the floor.

In case you have a wood sub-floor, a belt sander will be required to smoothen the surface. You could require a jamb saw for cutting the doorjamb or other trimmings to get the clearance needed for the flooring. But, you need not necessarily buy a jamb saw, and hire one for the purpose. Then, you need a trowel to smooth the leveling compound. All these tools along with a rented saw will amount to about $100.

You’ll need additional tools for the installation of the basement laminate flooring. These tools are a backsaw and a miter box, needed for making angular cuttings on the floor. You make straight cuts with a circular saw that has a carbide blade; while curves are achieved by using a saber saw that has a laminate blade. You really don’t have to buy these. Instead, hire these from your local hardware store. Normal rent for these will be in the range of $20-30 a day. The basic tools needed for the installation of laminate flooring in the basement will be around $100.

You will require coping saw, hacksaw, utility knife, screw clamp, straps, pull bar, driver, electric drill, tape measure, marker, caulking gun, a tapping block, claw hammer, clamp, and nails. The long list of needed items need not upset you as you also get laminate floor installation kits. The kit contains all the tools you will need to complete the job. Its price varies from $350 to $500 and saves you a lot of time in collecting each and every item. The kit may work out to be slightly more expensive than if you bought the items individually.

If you intend installing glued laminate flooring, you will need to have glue also. While you consider having laminate flooring in the basement you should use glue even with glue-less laminate flooring. This goes to provide extra sealant in areas that tend to remain humid or attract moisture, for example areas beneath the dishwasher or the refrigerator.
The additional protection provided by glue and sealant gives additional life to your floor, making them last longer. The cost of glue and sealant for the basement will be around $40, whereas the cost of laminate flooring varies from $0.65 to$3.0 per square foot, depending upon the kind of flooring you opt for. The total expense for an average-sized basement of about 100 square feet may vary from $100 to $600. It all depends upon the kind of flooring, whether you like to go for glue-less planks or the glued laminate flooring. The quality of the laminate and the protection provided to it makes all the difference in costing.

Laminate flooring also needs to have an underlay. That comes in the form of rolls of 100 square feet. Its average price is about $0.30 per square foot or $30 for a roll of 100 square feet. When buying the underlay or the laminate itself, you should buy a little more than the actual measurements of the basement. That extra length will take care f the errors that one makes while installing the floors. Depending on the actual size of your basement and the kind of flooring that you decide to have for your basement the project cost for installing laminate flooring in your basement may vary from $600 to $1500. Of course, you have that choice of buying the tools separately or buy a complete kit.

As you know the basement area tends to have mold around the sink, refrigerator, dishwasher, as all these appliances are associated with water in some form the other.
Therefore it would be worthwhile to provide more protection to the flooring there, else you might have make recurring expenses for its maintenance. For the same reason, you should consider having better quality laminate flooring for the basement.

Installing Laminate Basement Floor

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If you are ready to take care of the following five important steps and precautions, you’ll surely get a successful installation of a laminate floor without causing any harm to yourself or the new floor you intend installing.

1. Generally most of the manufacturers of laminates give warranty for its being installed below grade. Now, that is unlike a hardwood floor. Yet, it will be good to check the warranty clause as provided by re manufacturer.

2. Like any other flooring, laminate flooring too takes its time to get acclimatized to the surroundings of a new place. The best way to achieve that would be to store the intended flooring for about a week before you actually start its installation.

3. It is important to leave room for expansion of laminate. You would certainly be required to keep a gap of half an inch all around the perimeter of your room.

4. You have to be absolutely sure that the basement is totally dry. Remember that humidity and water is enemy number one for subfloors. You should save yourself from the uncalled for financial and physical strain of redoing the job by being cautious before hand.

5. Last, but the most important precaution that you should never afford to overlook concerns your personal safety. Put on your safety gear, particularly goggles, while handling any of the power tools for doing any job.

As laminate flooring is not nailed down it is essentially a floating floor. That makes its installation very convenient. An added advantage is that it has the pleasant appearance of a hardwood floor.

laminate basement flooring

It is quite an interesting and easy to execute DIY project. Here’s how it goes.

1. Before you really get down to the task of laying a laminate flooring it will be helpful to read on the topic of preparation of basement flooring. First step is to cove the entire floor with the subfloor, vapor barrier and padding. Generally vapor barrier and padding form a part of the purchase of the laminate flooring.

2. Having done that, you are ready to start the installation. Using the tongue and grove technique connect a number of planks together to form a long row. Take some another piece of wood lying around the house and put the laminate in place by slightly tapping it. You may need to use this piece of wood for attaching each piece into the groove by slight tapping. The more the number of planks you fix, the sturdier the floor gets.

3. As the number of rows increases, you should continue to stagger the seams. This imparts additional strength to floor in the absence of any clear break line.

4. In due course you will be required to cut the planks to fit with the walls. Take measurement of the space between the wall and the installed board and cut accordingly. You can very easily cut these planks by using a table saw, which is sturdy and thus safer to use than a hand-held circular saw for such kinds of jobs. Alternatively, you may even use a pry bar, a shorter version of a crow bar or caw-caw. Don’t you worry about that, it’s very easy and needs no technical talents.

5. For having a snug fitting around irregular areas like corners or immovable round poles, use a jig saw to get the desired perfect shapes.

6. Continue laying the planks, one after the other till the entire basement floor is covered.

7. Having laid the basement flooring, just install some trim/base boards on the top surface and your finished basement floor is ready.