I do receive quite a bit of question in regards to the DMX FX Floor Underlayment and DELTA®-FL which are pretty much comparable products. Both are providing alternative subflooring systems for concrete and slab on grade floors that help to keep moisture (somewhat) out of your basement and acts as a vapour barrier.
One important thing to remember is that these products should only be used if there is mould, moister and water leak problems with your cement/concrete floor and you can’t improve the existing conditions and looking for an inexpensive alternative just to cover your basement floor.
First of all, my personal and professional opinion is whatever the reason is to use these products, make sure that you have at least a ½ inch subfloor on top unless you’re okay by sacrificing the use of an underpad and I mean why would you? Again, No matter what the manufacturer says, you need a sturdy OSB subfloor on the top. If your basement access allows you to carry a 4 ft x 8 ft OSB subfloor and you don’t have any tricky cut areas than these two products may come handy. The OSB subfloors must have Tongues and Grooves. Or you could use (depending on the floor that will go over it) a flat bracket for joining the two boards.
If your basement requires tricky cuts on edges and carrying a 4 x 8 ft OSB board inside to your basement is just out of the question, your best bet will be the DRIcore® subfloor system. They are 2×2 ft in size and the vapor barrier is attached directly to the floor. Handling the 2×2 ft panels with tongue and groove will make the installation way simpler than DMX or Delta FL.
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I also believe that your cement/concrete floor needs to breathe if you seal the floor and prevent it from breathing it will cause some other issues. Therefore allow min ¼ inches to max ½ inches gaps all around the perimeter. This will help to circulate the air beneath the subflooring system.
One more important suggestions is to make some openings, the size of floor registers and simply to cover them with floor registers. It will not just look stylish, but t will also give you access to the floor to see if you have any leaks or other problem. This openings will also help with the air flow and will keep your floors dry by allowing the air to circulate. There is no standard for this since I am the only one suggesting this method, I would suggest to do this for every 200 sq ft area with one opening.
And please stay away from hardwood and laminate flooring in your basement. Both can cause serious complications. Hardwood is definitely not the right choice with the basement and laminate could cause mould and mildew. Any retailer that says otherwise, ask at least for a 10-year unconditional labour and material warranty that you won’t see any gaps, separations, cracks, buckles and so on… Wall to wall carpet and LVT (Luxuries Vinyl Tile OR Vinyl Planks) are still the way to go for a basement especially in some pockets in Toronto, Mississauga, Markham, and Brampton. Carpet is basements not only provides you with a less expensive flooring solutions but also offers a much more durable and healthier choice. And can be easily repaired, lifted, relaid and even reused after a water leak or water damage.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and I hope I was able to help!
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