covering cellar painted cement floor

jingle_arlingtonMarch 1, 2006

Thanks in advance for any advise and sorry for cross referencing this in Flooring but I've had no results!

I have an old hand dug cellar that has a floor that is covered with poorly cured cement. Some of the cement is in fairly o.k. condition, in other places it is sandy and friable. Where friable I can see down to the dirt below (about 1/2 inch below the cement). I've tried to patch the sandy/friable places with a cement compound, but the new cement doesn't take hold.

I was going to go to the expense of getting a contractor in to spread a thin layer of new cement over the entire floor, but am wondering if it is possible to put vinyl or linoleum over it. I'm doing this just so the cellar floor looks half way decent and is cleaner, not to create a liveable room. Expense is a real issue.

The cellar is now dry, but only because I had a french drain dug around the internal parameter of the cellar, emptying into a sump pump. Previously there was a small stream that ran thru the dirt subwalls ran thru the cellar. PLEASE HELP!

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depends on how nice you want it to be. You could spread some gravel all over the floor in there and use it as a floor that would probably be the cheapest route. If possible use a washed gravel that will pack down.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2006 at 8:12PM
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Gravel was my first thought too. I would think that concrete over deteriorating concrete would break down over time as well. Maybe crushed stone, then pour new concrete. Vinyl would cover it but it wont adhere to the deteriorating sections of concrete

    Bookmark   March 2, 2006 at 9:11PM
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Thank you, I had not thought of gravel because the friable parts are pretty small in comparison to the more competent cement parts (there are 10 areas that I need to patch which measure about 6-10" wide each over a floor that covers abot 400 sq. ft). Do you think that it would be worth digging out the bad cement in those areas, putting in pea gravel, and then patching them with new cement?
If I did that, do you think that vinyl would stick to the floor?
Thanks in advance.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2006 at 10:24PM
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If it were me, I'd spend the money I would have spent on vinyl flooring and patch the basement floor properly and then either stain the concrete or use one of those spatter epoxy floor finishes (it's a DIY job). You'll get a reasonably attractive floor that you know will handle anything else you may want to do later.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2006 at 8:59AM
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Do you have the headroom to give up? Doing it right would be taking up old concrete if its pretty brittle. If not its not going to hurt anything if you can give up the head room. How big is cellar? Can you give up 6-8 inches of headroom? Perfect world the correct fix would be to add about 3-4 inches of washed compacted gravel then a vapor barrier (plastic) and then pour about 4 inches of concrete. Again I dont know the size so cant really tell you its a DIY type job.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2006 at 4:23PM
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Thanks for the suggestion, but there is not enough headroom to add even two inches to the floor. Could I dig out the bad patches several inches and then add the gravel, etc? The floor is about 20 ft x 30 ft, so it is pretty big. I doubt that I'll be able to do it myself. Thanks.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2006 at 6:05PM
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Are you looking for the most affordable DIY method or cheapest to hire someone. If you only want to patch holes then yes, dig out the loose concrete, mix up some sacrete and level it out. If the surronding concrete is solid then dirve some concrete nails or drill holes and add some rebar to hold the patches in. If you want something nice, dig it all out and lay pavers maybe..Is it level now? How about putting a 3/4 treated plywood down on the whole floor. There are lots of methods to fix it. It all depends on what you want and what you want to spend.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2006 at 8:03PM
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