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    LESLIE: Now we’ve got David in Iowa who is working on a basement floor. Tell us what’s going on.

    DAVID: Hi, Leslie.

    LESLIE: Hi, David.

    DAVID: Yeah, the sewer backed up into our basement; carpet’s down there.

    LESLIE: (overlapping voices) Oh, goodness.

    TOM: (overlapping voices) Sorry to hear that.

    DAVID: So I pulled out the carpet and the pad and I was …

    LESLIE: And got it far, far away from your house. (Leslie, Tom and David chuckle) Wearing nose plugs and ran from it.

    DAVID: And I was thinking of options in what to put down instead, because I was reluctant to do carpet again. So my wife wanted to do ceramic tile and it’s about 540 square feet. That would be kind of pricey so I’m just going to paint it with epoxy paint and I was wondering if that would be a good idea. There are a lot of bowls and waves in the concrete.

    TOM: (overlapping voices) Mm-hmm. Okay.

    DAVID: The carpet …

    LESLIE: Well, that’s all fixable.

    DAVID: Yeah.

    TOM: Yeah. Yeah, I think you’ve got a bunch of options. Epoxy paint, definite possibility. They have a lot of good-looking colors in epoxy paint and a lot of different sort of chip surfaces.

    LESLIE: Like additives.

    TOM: Yeah, additives that kind of give it a nice décor look to it.

    The other things that you could think about doing would be either laminate flooring or even engineered hardwood floor.

    LESLIE: Mm-hmm. And of course, these are all things that run the gamut of the price range. You know, even with ceramic tile, which is something that your wife likes, you can get something for as low as $2 to $3 a square, up to $100 a square. So you really need to sort of look at your budget. But Tom’s right; you can go laminate, you can go engineered hardwood. Those are all things that are made to be in that super-moist area that is your basement, on that concrete subfloor.

    And another thing, you’re mentioning this epoxy flooring but you did say – I heard that the floor is kind of wavy and a little uneven. There are a ton of products out there.

    Is it Abatron, Tom, is the website?

    TOM: Yeah, mm-hmm.

    LESLIE: Abatron. They make something called Abocrete or Abocast; I forget which is the one. But it’s a compound that you mix up and sort of put over the floor that you already have and it sort of self-levels and evens out the areas where there are dips and divots. I mean it’s a process; it takes a couple of days. But if you’re going to go with that epoxy floor, you want it to look smooth.

    DAVID: Can I just put more concrete?

    LESLIE: No, it won’t stick to each other.

    TOM: (overlapping voices) No. No, no, no, no. It won’t stick. No, you need an epoxy-patching compound; that’s the only thing that’s going to adhere.

    DAVID: OK.

    LESLIE: Otherwise, it’ll just pop right off and then you’ll have an area that’s half epoxy-coated and one that’s not. (David chuckles) So don’t even mess with it. Definitely level it off first.

    DAVID: (overlapping voices) OK.

    LESLIE: And it’s not a difficult process; it’s just a bag of powdery material that you’ve got to mix up and it’s work. But it does make the floor fantastic.

    We had a similar situation; we had the basement flood, with carpeting. Took all the carpeting up; the concrete subfloor was a disaster. (David chuckles) And there were some real areas of unevenness and that Abocrete like saved my basement’s life. It really – it took three days to cure with fans and really a process but that floor looks fantastic. And then we put a laminate over it, which is – we love it.

    DAVID: Alright. Thank you very much.

    TOM: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT. 

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