Finishing a Radiant-Heat Floor
LESLIE: Alright. Now we’ve got David on the line. Welcome to The Money Pit. How can we help you today?
DAVID: Well, my wife and I are in the process of building a new house. We’re six months into this project, so our – we’re ready to finish our basement floor. And we’re not sure whether we should use floor paint or if we should go with the epoxy paint.
TOM: Alright. Now what’s your wife’s name?
TOM: Sharon, are you listening into this?
SHARON: I am, sir.
TOM: Alright. Now what’s your take on this? Because we figure there’s a bet involved here.
SHARON: Well, originally, we were looking at polished concrete. But I went to look at some and I was told that you have to redo the polish every so often. And I would like something that I don’t have to do every so often.
TOM: Any time you put any kind of finish on concrete, you’re going to have to redo it from time to time. So, no matter which way we go, with polished concrete or with paint, you’re going to have to redo it.
But Leslie, I’m thinking that this is a situation where Sharon and David may want to try acid staining the floor.
DAVID: Well, we considered the acid stain and that was something that we kind of ruled out.
TOM: OK. Why was that?
DAVID: The reason being because of the smell.
TOM: Why do you want to paint it? Why don’t you do something like a laminate that can basically sit on top of the concrete, if it’s really finished space?
SHARON: It’s radiant-heat floor. And we were told that the best thing to do would not be to cover it with anything.
TOM: No, I think you could put laminate flooring on a radiant-heat floor. Since you – since it’s really finished living space – I mean when you say “concrete floor,” I’m thinking basement. But this is really finished space, so you want something that’s going to be warmer. So, I think laminate might be a good choice for you. Laminate basically locks together and sits on top of the concrete. And the radiant heat will transmit up through that laminate and still warm the floor.
I would take a look at laminate because it can look like pretty much anything. You can get laminate that looks like hardwood floor, any variety of hardwood floor, new floor, old floor, aged floor, bamboo floor, all kinds of crazy species of wood. You can also get all kinds of – all types of stone-floor looks or even something that looks like tile or looks like vinyl. It’s all available today in laminate. Super-durable stuff and easy to install. I think that’s your solution. Will that keep the marriage going?
DAVID: How did you know?
TOM: David and Sharon, thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.