Basement Flooring Guide – When choosing basement flooring, there are many factors that need to be considered. Historically, choosing flooring rated as ‘below grade’ flooring was important, but technology as it is has made it so many above grade flooring options are suitable for basements. Nevertheless, your basement flooring needs to be durable and waterproof as basements tend to be high moisture environments. Obviously, you also want to consider the function of the space. If you’re creating a workspace or a laundry room for example, your flooring choices will be very different than if your basement is an extension of your living space. Finally, there are unique installation considerations and even your budget will influence basement flooring options. At Floor Coverings International, we have a wide range of suitable options and our basement flooring guide will help you make the best choice for your home and your basement.
Before we get into discussing specific basement flooring options, let’s talk a little bit about installation and the importance of a subfloor and underlay. The subfloor is the base upon which flooring is installed. In basements, concrete is the typical subfloor. Over the subfloor you may have either underlayment or sometimes what is known as a subfloor sleeper.
What’s the difference between the two? A subfloor sleeper features wood construction (typically a combination of 2x4s and plywood) and sits on top of your concrete slab. More commonly, underlayment is installed as a thin layer over your subfloor to create a moisture barrier. Underlayment may be a single sheet of thick plastic to prevent moisture from coming up through the concrete and into your final flooring. It can also help with temperature control as cool moisture from the concrete can reduce basement temperatures.
When you are choosing basement flooring, it is important to consider the type of subfloor recommended by the flooring manufacturer. Ultimately, some homeowners may want to construct a subfloor sleeper in order to make their basement more suitable for a particular kind of finished flooring. It’s also important to understand that underlayment and subfloors can have a significant impact on not only the durability but also the comfort of your basement floor. If you want to know more about installation specifications for a particular type of flooring, our professionals at Floor Coverings International are poised to help. But now that you have a bit of background on basement flooring installation, let’s take a closer look at types of flooring.
Types of Basement Flooring
A few of the most common choices for basement flooring are vinyl, engineered hardwood, laminate, and carpet.
- Vinyl Flooring is made from plastic so it stands up well to moisture. It is also highly durable and makes a great choice for high traffic areas. Many homeowners are drawn to vinyl flooring for utility spaces because it is inexpensive and easy to maintain.
- Engineered hardwood is a popular choice for basement living spaces because it gives the appearance of hardwood flooring while offering improved moisture resistance. Engineered hardwood flooring is also relatively easy to install and available in a wide range of styles that incorporate different plank widths as well as wood varieties and grains.
- Laminate flooring also gives the appearance of wood; but unlike engineered hardwood which is made from manufactured board, laminate is constructed from synthetic materials. Laminate is very affordable, easy to install, and moisture-resistant. It looks great and stands up well in high traffic areas.
- Carpet brings softness and comfort to your basement. Because it is affordable, available in many colours and patterns, it’s a great choice for basements. Obviously, carpet doesn’t stand up well to moisture, but it is relatively easy to maintain. When choosing carpet for your basement, our team at Floor Coverings International can give you expert advice to determine its suitability for your basement.
As you can see, there are many great flooring options for basements. Consult with Floor Coverings International and we’ll help you find the perfect flooring for any space in your home.