LESLIE: Calling from Chicago-land is Arlene who finds The Money Pit on WYLL. And you’ve got a flooring question. What can we do for you?
ARLENE: I have carpeting. I want to pick it up and bare the industrial (ph) tile under it. I just needed to know what do I need to do in order to put down some floor.
LESLIE: What kind of floor do you want to put down.
ARLENE: Mmm, oak. I’m not … I’m not decided as yet. Maybe oak or any kind of those floors that you can put over tiles. I don’t know.
TOM: What kind of subfloor do you have, Arlene? Is this going over a wood subfloor or is it going over concrete? Is that vinyl tile on top of a wood …?
ARLENE: Vinyl … yes, vinyl tile on top of concrete.
TOM: On top of concrete. OK, that’s important information because that’s going to impact the type of wood flooring that we recommend.
LESLIE: Yeah, with a concrete subfloor, even though it’s underneath that vinyl tile, you’re still going to get a certain amount of moisture and a certain amount of wicking. So going with an actual hardwood, like you might have in mind with an oak, might not be the best idea because that moisture could cause that hardwood floor to warp and twist and rot out, which you don’t want. But you can go with something called an engineered hardwood, which is built in the same way that plywood is; it’s many different layers applied together to create a structurally stable wood floor. So it’s engineered but it’s also wood with the topmost layer being that wood surface that you like. And that’s a great application. But there’s some other options as well.
TOM: Yeah, you could go with a laminate floor, which is going to be less expensive than engineered hardwood. And with a laminate floor, Arlene, you’ll have lots and lots of choices on which way you can go with a pattern. It could look like wood – either a modern, sharp, you know, oak hardwood or it could like an old, distressed hardwood; or it could like a stone pattern or a tile pattern or even a vinyl pattern. But it’s really durable. Laminate floors are very, very tough. It’s one of the most durable …
LESLIE: Well, they’re made from plastic, right?
TOM: Yeah, it’s one of the most durable surfaces out there. And it’s easy to install because all of the joints now are locked together; it’s kind of like putting together a puzzle when you drop everything together. You can do that yourself if you can handle just some basic power tools to cut into the edge. It doesn’t have to get glued to the floor, either. It pretty much just floats right on top.
So there are all the options you can consider for this floor. And in terms of that vinyl floor that’s down there now, no need with any of these to remove that. You can leave this in place and go right on top of it.