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taydeedee 07-28-2006 07:39 PM

HELP! Hardwood fllor is buckling and cupping.
I really hope that this is something that can be fixed without too much trouble. We have recently laid random width #2 unfinished hardwood flooring in our new home. Our basement is unfinished and damp. Now after about 6 weeks our floors are like a roller coaster. Is there anything we can do short of taking them up and starting over? We have recently began trying to finish our basement and get the place climate controlled. After that should the floors lay back down?

inspectorD 07-28-2006 07:48 PM

You will not know untill you try it.
Dehumidify that basement.:eek:

glennjanie 07-28-2006 08:31 PM

Hello and Welcome TayDeeDee:
Yes, some of the cupping and bucking will go down as you dry things out. I would give it plenty of time to stabilize before sanding and finishing the floor. Caution; do not use Polycrilic for a finish (the water based kind), I refinished some of my floors and used 3 coats of it. It is already wearing off real bad, after only 3 years.
Next time you lay hardwood it needs to be spread out and allowed to take on the normal humidity of the house before nailing it down and it should have 15# roofing felt below it for moisture protection.

asbestos 07-30-2006 05:02 AM

The good thing about wood is that it can move back. If it will move back is another matter. Wood warps because it has absorbed moisture unevenly. It swells as it gets 'wet', and the swelling is mainly across the grain. try to dry things out and be patient. What is between the wood and the concrete? Also is there enough gap between the floor and the walls? if there is not the floor will smash into the walls as it swells and the middle will rise.

taydeedee 07-30-2006 07:37 AM

We have used ADVANTEC Plywood under the floors with #15 paper on that and then the floors. Where we did random widths the contractor wedged some of the strips at the walls edge. Have you ever heard of that? My husband is in construction, (commercial concrete) but he has been around a lot of new construction and he say's he has never heard of wedging the planks to get a good fit? Should we take the wedges out?

glennjanie 07-30-2006 02:15 PM

Hi Taydeedee:
I can see putting the wedges on the last board to make it fit; but, then I would drive a finish nail or two for each wedge, countersink them with a nail set, fill the holes with plastic wood or Durham's Rock Hard water putty and thenremove the wedges. If the wedges are on the ends of the hardwood pieces, you can leave them; wood only gets fatter with moistrue, not longer.

taydeedee 07-30-2006 03:33 PM

Nope, these are at the edge of the planks. The long side. The 5 1/4 width boards we used were really crooked and hard to lay and he drove the wedges at the end to keep them in place. We haven't put down our floor trim in some of the rooms so you can look down and literally see the wedges. My husband said that usually carpenters leave at least 1/2 in. gap for the floor to expand. So we were really confused.

glennjanie 07-30-2006 04:03 PM

Your husband is correct; just secure that last board (you will probably have to pre-drill the nail holes in the hardwood) and take the wedges out. Then you're ready for the trim.

asbestos 07-30-2006 09:22 PM

You can only hold things so much. it does need room to expand. the plywood will not expand like the flooring as it has grain running differnt ways. do not do anything that is not undoable untill you have given things time to work out

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