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Sharoon 09-25-2007 04:41 PM

Humidity and Hardwood Floor Installation
Is there a concern about humidity in your home when preparing to install pre-finished hardwood flooring? I was told that the humidity in your basement has to be a certain level or floors should not be laid. It makes sense, but how do builders dry out new houses to install floors in them?

Thanks for your replies.

glennjanie 09-25-2007 10:07 PM

Welcome Sharoon:
Most installers don't try to control the humidity so much; rather they get the material in the house a few days ahead of use and allow it to adjust to the humidity of the house.
If you are speaking of installing wood floors in a basement you should go back to the dealer for special instructions. Wood floors installed below grade send a chill up the back of dealers and manufacturers.

Sharoon 09-26-2007 05:16 AM

Hi Glenn, thanks for your reply. It actually sort of makes sense to me... What I'm dealing with is my contractor. He's been to my house to 1.) price the job 2.) see the floor when we had removed the carpets 3.) seen the floor when we had removed the old hardwood flooring which was under the carpets. Now the night before he was to start work he stopped by with his humidity checker and said I had too much humidity in my basement to buy a new dehumidifierand too run it for a couple of days and he'd check again. He's coming back tonight to check again. Not once in his previous visits did he mention that there could be any concen. He is going to lay I believe 3/8" plywood over the old plank flooring. My house is approximately 60 years old... I do run a dehumidifier but I do not draw out huge amounts of water. I can perhaps empty the tray 2 times a week in the hot humid weather and other seasons it doesn't even run steady. I appreciate your information. Oh yes, this is not in the basement but on the main floor of my house.

Daryl in Nanoose 09-27-2007 10:09 PM

Is the ceiling in your basement finished? If not this is why he has most likely requested you to take care of this. Here in BC wood flooring is climatized for a week before installation.

glennjanie 09-28-2007 10:28 AM

Hello Sharoon:
If your current dehumidifier is working you should not get a new one. The new wood must take on the moisture that is 'normally' in your house; otherwise, if you do a super-dry-out now, you can bet the humidity will come back to the normal. A dry new floor already installed and taking on the normal moisture will buck-up or cup. The new wood must agree with the existing wood. Daryl's week long climitization sounds good to me.

Sharoon 09-30-2007 09:27 AM

Thanks guys...everything you've said makes sense to me. I did buy a new dehumidifier. I honestly believe my contractor has been buying time with me. He did bring my new flooring it's sitting in boxes all weekend.

My basement is partially finished. The main part where the work is being done is workshop area, so it's not a finished ceiling.

I watched him to a read on the floor plank RH and most readings were 6-12.2. I do believe like you've said, I've done a super dry out and this could be just as bad...having said that...I'm on my way to turn the dehumidifier on low from high.

It's so hard being a home owner depending on contracting all work. Just want all you guys to know MOST of us ladies do appreciate the helping hand.

Daryl in Nanoose 09-30-2007 09:35 AM

You are most welcome, buy the way make sure you get a written Guarantee signed and dated 'JUST IN CASE"

glennjanie 09-30-2007 08:00 PM

Also Sharoon, you can check with the local Home Builder's Association for reputable contractors or ask the ones that contact you if they are certified by the Home Builder's.

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