Raising Floors a Little Bit
I plan to build a small bungalow in the near future. The foundation will be slab-on-grade with in-floor heating. Most of the flooring will be engineered wood except for wet areas such as the laundry room and the mudroom, which will have vinyl flooring that’s significantly thinner than the wood. What is the best way to raise those two areas so that they are level with the engineered-wood flooring?
Ron Percy, via email, None
Editorial Adviser Mike Guertin replies: You could use plywood, but with in-floor heat, any wood-based panel can diminish heat transfer. It’s best to raise those areas using a conductive material such as a self-leveling flooring compound. Several types can be poured over existing concrete slabs in depths up to 1-1⁄2 in., but be sure to use an in-floor, heat-compatible compound. You can buy the dry materials by the sack and mix them with water on-site. It’s not the easiest approach, but for larger areas, you can hire a specialty contractor who will use mixing machines and pumps to deliver the compound to the floor.