Old and original wooden floors can be a charming addition to your home, no matter whether your style is traditional, contemporary or industrial. If your wooden floor isn’t in the best condition or you want to install underfloor heating, then it might be worth taking some time to restore and renovate your flooring.
Insulating or Levelling an Old Floor
Some old materials aren’t breathable, so they won’t be able to absorb or evaporate moisture from the surface area. If you a have a rug over your wooden floor, a non-breathable material, then damp could occur because the moisture is unable to evaporate. This will also happen if you put an unsuitable layer of insulation underneath flooring.
To insulate underneath a floor correctly, so it’s able to breath, it is better to opt for a mixture of natural hydraulic lime binders (NHLs) or insulating aggregates. These materials have the ability to absorb and emit moisture and can be installed successfully with underfloor heating.
How to Install Insulation
Dig up the floor to the required depth before the ground is levelled and compacted.
Add a layer of expanded clay beads, and then a layer of a breathable membrane, and then a layer of limecrete.
Cover the layers with underfloor heating and then a lime-based screed.
The floor can then be finished with original flooring material.
Any polish, sealants or finishes that you use on the floor must be breathable.
Cork-edge insulation can then be used around the perimeter of the wall to prevent cold bridging, which is a weak spot in the insulation.
How to Repair a Wooden Floor
A wooden floor can be achieve with ease, if you are a confident DIYer. If you need some help, then contact a specialist.
Scrap off glue or adhesive, punch any exposed nails down to the surface and remove staples.
Nail down loose boards or replace broken ones so they have the same finish.
Fill in any gaps. If there are large gaps you can fill these in with a thin strip of wood glue, for smaller gaps these can be filled in using papier-mache covered in a water-based wood dye that matches the floor.
Sand the floor. Make sure you check the grade of the sandpaper; this depends on the state of the floor. When sanding makes sure you wear goggles and a sand mask.
If you floor is badly damaged or loose then it needs to be taken up and replaced with new flooring before the surface is varnished or sealed.
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