Subfloor Is In

Well after a 2 long days of cutting, drilling, impacting, dust, splinters and lots of 80’s Rock N’ Roll the new subfloor has been installed in the basement. Finally we’re starting to add back to this little house. Instead of DE-constructing we are CON-structing. Here is what lies under the subfloor…

Snapped chalk lines to ensure straight and true boards

Snapped chalk lines to ensure straight and true boards

2x4s and foam insulation underneath supporting the subfloor.

2x4s and foam insulation underneath supporting the subfloor.

While this all looks somewhat complicated it really isn’t. Simply measure out your subfloor boards (2x4s) to be 24″ on center so they will line up properly with the floor deck that will get installed over the top of this. Once you have it measured out (be sure to measure twice and cut once!) snap some chalk lines to mark where the boards need to get attached to your concrete basement floor. Before attaching the boards to the cement lay down a moisture barrier such as visqueen. Now, there are several ways to attach wood to concrete. The strongest method would be to use a product called a RedHead. This is an expanding anchor that has a nut on top which when tightened will expand the anchor inside the hole in the concrete. This is recommended for load bearing walls and anything that needs a significant amount of support. We won’t using this method for our floor since nothing in the basement that we are working on is load bearing. Another method is a nail gun that uses gun powder charges to drive nails into the cement through the wood boards. This can work good for small subfloors but wasn’t working out so well for our 2×4 subfloor boards. We ended up using a Tapcon system that worked great. These are also concrete anchors but are driven into the cement using an impact gun or driver.

The easiest way to install them is with a corded drill using the hammer setting (for drilling into the cement), a cordless drill (for drilling through the wood), and a cordless impact driver for actually driving the Tapcons in. First a hole must be drilled through the wood to the cement. Next, using the corded hammer drill and masonry bit, drill into the cement to length that is specified for the Tapcons. Be sure to clear out the hole a few times as the debris from drilling can interfere with the Tapcons. Finally use the cordless impact driver to drive the Tapcon through the wood into the cement. It’s a good idea to countersink the Tapcon a bit so it doesn’t interfere with the floor deck. In this case we also insulated the floor with some R 7.5 foam board. This will really make a difference in the winter time to help keep the floor a bit warmer since it is already lying on the cement floor. It also gives an added quiet factor for your basement if you insulate the floor and ceiling which we will get to a bit later on.

Decking that is laid over the subfloor supports

Decking that is laid over the subfloor supports

As you can see in this photo the floor decking has already been laid over the supports that were shown in the last photo. We also snapped chalk lines over the top of the floor decking so it was easier to attach the OSB sheets to the subfloor supports. It’s a good idea to stagger the floor decking rather than line up all your seams, since this uses a tongue and groove system to connect the boards it also helps with this as well. The decking is attached to the subfloor supports by using a cordless impact driver and some 1 3/4″ screws. Just for some extra support (and to make sure they don’t creak later) we also used a high grade construction adhesive (Liquid Nails) to hold them in place as well.

Well there you have it! Check back in for more updates and thanks for following!

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