Installing Cork in a Basement
When choosing flooring for a basement, you must consider which flooring can withstand all the challenges that are associated with a basement. First, the flooring must be one that can be installed over concrete, but it must also be able to withstand a major culprit that can be damaging to almost any flooring, called moisture. Moisture and dampness also create another even more potentially harmful problem, which is mold. Many types of flooring are not recommended in areas where moisture can be a common problem. Moisture will ruin carpet and it can harbor mold and mildew, which can be a health hazard. Hardwoods and laminate cannot be exposed to moisture because they will bulk, warp or swell. However, there are a few possible choices for use in a basement with cork flooring being one of them. But, you must first take some precautions before installing any type of flooring in a basement, since excessive exposure to moisture can damage just about any flooring.
The first thing you need to do is to take a moisture test to determine if there are any existing moisture problems. In the event that there is a moisture problem, you will need to take steps to remedy that problem before installing any flooring. In instances where a basement is exposed to consistent, prolonged moisture that is not addressed and flooring is installed, it could lead to potential problems and health risks in the future. If the test reveals a high moisture reading that cannot be corrected, then it may not be in range to accommodate flooring and you may have to settle for a painted surface that cannot be damaged by moisture. If the moisture test reveals that your basement is in range to tolerate flooring, you should contact a trained flooring specialist to discuss the pros and cons of installing cork flooring in a basement before making your final decision.
Once you have decided that you want to install cork in your basement, it is recommended that you take a few steps to ensure that you get the most performance out of your cork flooring. Cork is more moisture resistant than hardwoods, but it is not indestructible, so you must install a moisture barrier over the concrete, prior to installing the cork flooring to protect it from any moisture seeping up from the concrete foundation. It is also recommended that you seal your cork flooring tiles and all crevices in between them with three or four coats of a water based polyurethane sealant after it is installed for maximum protection against moisture. If you use any other type of sealant, it will not protect your cork flooring as well.
Another important thing to take into consideration when installing cork flooring below grade and over concrete is the type of cork flooring that you choose. You will want to choose click-lock cork flooring tiles that can be installed in a floating method, where the tiles are connected to each other and are not directly attached to the sub-floor. It is not recommended to install glue-down cork flooring tiles below grade, since moisture will cause the glue to deteriorate and could penetrate the cork flooring.
Cork flooring has many advantages and is popular for its comfort, durability, water resistance, insect resistance, resilience and for its insulation and sound proofing qualities, making it an ideal choice for use in a basement installation. If you would like further information on the use of cork flooring in a basement, please call woodwudy.com and speak to one of our flooring professionals at 1-877-966-3983.
At Woodwudy Wholesale Flooring we are always glad to serve you.