Having a sweating floor does not only weaken the foundation of the premises but also creates a slippery surface which is a risk factor within your living space. This comprehensive guide will answer any queries concerning your sweating floor and provide the best strategies to stop the dumbness.
Why Floors Sweat
For most floors, condensation is the main reason for the sweating, especially in warm weather. When warm humid air from outside comes into contact with the cold concrete the air rapidly cools and condenses on the surface causing the wetness.
If nothing is done about the condensation, the concrete slab becomes darker and results in efflorescence in the long run. This is a situation where the floor develops white patches caused when water that had previously been absorbed into the concrete floor slab comes to the surface and evaporates leaving behind mineral deposits carried from the concrete.
Other causes for sweating floors is lack of moisture barriers beneath the slab hence the movement of moisture from underneath to the surface. Do not be fooled by the density of concrete, within it are small capillaries that act as an absorbent hence dampening the affected rooms mostly in the basement.
Easy DIY Tests To Determine Cause Of Sweating Floor
It is easy to determine whether a sweating floor is as a result of humid air from outside or absorption of moisture from underneath with this practical approach. All you need is a 16-inch piece of square shaped plastic and tape.
Tape the plastic on the floor slab when dry ensuring the edges are completely sealed and wait until the floor shows signs of wetness. Remove the taped plastic and assess the nature of wetness. If the concrete patch that was sealed is completely dry and the rest of the floor is wet, it is an indication of a sweating floor caused by humid air outside but if the patch is wet and the rest of the floor dry, it is an indication of a moisture problem.
Functional Remedies To Counter Sweating Floors
Eliminating the factors responsible for sweating is the only effective way to keep your floor dry. Such can be achieved by applying the following techniques:
- Sealing all openings to prevent humid air from getting inside
- Minimizing humidity of the air
- Changing the surface of your floor
- Raising the overall room temperature
- Improving the circulation of air across the floor
Sealing all openings reduces the draft which results in condensation on the floor. The vents should not be sealed as this would go against construction legal codes. You may also opt for a dehumidifier device to minimize humidity. Vinyl mats, interlocking floor tiles, and specialized carpets are also effective in keeping floors dry. Another practical option is enhancing aeration for floors with fans because if humid air does not get adequate time to settle condensation will not be achieved. Lastly, heating the affected rooms maintains floor temperature at room temperature hence humid air is not cooled down on the floor surface.
The most recommendable option however is changing flooring material as it is inexpensive and serves you best in the long run.