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Installing Carpet in a Basement with Radiant Heat

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Albert in Wisconsin’s got the number one question here at The Money Pit; flooring. What can we do for you, Albert?

    ALBERT: I went and I – my wife says to me, she says, “If you refinish the basement you can buy a new cycle.” (Tom and Leslie chuckle)

    LESLIE: OK.

    ALBERT: So guess what I did?

    TOM: OK?

    ALBERT: I went and I remodeled the basement and this is before I listened to you saying never, ever, ever put carpet in a basement. But before I put the carpet in I put plastic on the walls and on the floors; I put polystyrene on the outside walls; I also put radiant heat tubing, half-inch PEX, on the floor. I put ¾-inch plywood down …

    TOM: OK.

    ALBERT: … with the PEX tubing underneath that, zigzag back and forth. All of it is over plastic. And now my big question is now that it’s all done, am I going to have a water problem?

    TOM: Albert, I wouldn’t worry too much about it and I will say that since you’ve taken all these steps to make your basement as dry as possible plus you have heat under the floor, you reduce some of the risks of having carpet in the basement. Generally, we don’t recommend it, though, because basements are very moist and carpet is very attractive to dust mites and it’s hard to get clean.

    LESLIE: Mold and allergens

    TOM: The mold and – yeah. So that’s why we don’t recommend it. But having said that, the fact that you’ve got a heated floor with carpet on top of it reduces your risk significantly. So I think you’re going to be fine. So enjoy it, Albert. 

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