Last time, we talked about painting your concrete basement floor. This time, on to the next most economical basement floor treatment: carpeting.
Carpet provides some resilience, making the concrete more comfortable to walk on. And it will make the floor a little warmer in winter. However, as we mentioned before, in order to apply carpet directly to the concrete, you should have an absolutely dry basement. Carpet won’t allow moisture to easily dry off the concrete, which leads to the potential for nasty molds.
Even if your basement’s dry, it’s a good idea to lay a moisture barrier over the concrete before carpeting. A cellulose soundboard — intended as a wall sound barrier — does a good job, and some products are specifically designed to help you carpet concrete floors. These underlays add cushioning and include ventilation which allows the concrete to “breathe”.
Whether or not you’ve used a barrier or sub-underlay, next, lay a good quality carpet pad. If it’s sitting directly on the concrete, go with a solid rubber slab pad with a low absorption rate.
Finally, lay your carpetâ€¦ but before you do, consider alternatives, such as bamboo or cork.
Alternatively, you can still have carpet, but avoid the worry of water damaging it, have the additional options of a nice wood or tile finish, and have a better feeling walking on floor overall. Next time, we’ll look at installing a raised floor.