Kitchen floor...1900s house.

Discussion in 'Builders' Talk' started by Dot99, May 23, 2018.

  1. Dot99

    Dot99 Member

    Currently refurbishing a old terrace house. The kitchen floor (house built in1906) is a stone floor(currently covered by vinyl flooring/lino)

    and it gets damp, what is the fix/solution to repair or cover this.
     
  2. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Screwfix Select

    It'll probably be stone flags on sand and/or cinders. It was designed to breath (not be covered) and sweats when covered - my latest project had 4 layers of lino and 2 of carpet!. There are 2 options. Revert the house to a well ventilated, unheated except for coal fires, open chimney house with draughty windows and lime plaster walls so the whole house "breaths" as it was originally intended to, or convert it to modern standards where cold surfaces are eliminated through insulation, windows and walls are more airtight and mechanical ventilation looks after humidity.

    Inevitably without change you will end up with a warm room and cool damp material under the floor. IMO the only solution (unless option 1) is pull it all out and install an insulated concrete floor. The stone flags if they are half decent will have some value so don't let the builder just walk off with them!
     
    Dot99 and KIAB like this.
  3. Dot99

    Dot99 Member

    I just fell over:eek:. Thanks for your response. Worst news possible I think. This could mean replacing the whole kitchen too, unless I can dismantle and reinstall it. I do agree it does need to be a concrete floor.
     
  4. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Screwfix Select

    Not necessarily. Perhaps I was a bit quick to go straight to "rip it out and replace with concrete" There is also another option - why not uncover it and see if they are good enough to clean up - if they really are stone they could clean up nicely. there are companies that do this e.g. http://www.renewrestoration.co.uk/sandstone-floor-cleaning-polishing. We did look at this but as we were also taking walls out it wasn't really an option so we went straight to concrete on advice, and we will reuse the flags outside. If you don't want to replace, there is no reason I can think of that an old flagged floor won't be just fine provided it can breath and you have adequate ventilation. I have my own theories (based on what others are also saying) that 95% of all "damp" in houses is condensation. The problem is we seal houses up with double glazing, blocked flues etc, then make them nice and warm so the air is capable of holding lots of water vapour, then we do things like cooking, having showers and just generally "living" which means we create humidity. ANY cold surface which is below the dew point for that air will attract condensation, and damp air passing through a breathable medium will condense at the point it moves far enough away from the warm internal surface to the cooler external surface, and if that is inside your wall you get - guess what - "rising damp" at the bottom of a wall, because that's usually the coldest part. Same with the floor - its cold. Your room is warm. Any condensation in the floor will be trapped there if covered by vinyl and lino.
     
    Dot99 likes this.
  5. Dot99

    Dot99 Member

    Great advice again. Refurb is for a rental. Kitchen walking space is small (4sq m approx). Ideal solution is a long term, budget, hassle free fix. i.e hopefully not remove kitchen. But yes it is causing condensation. Also, it won't be feet friendly to walk on
     
  6. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Screwfix Select

    Hmm. 4sqm. If I was a betting man I would guess that what is now the kitchen was originally the "scullery" and the middle room would probably have been the original main kitchen area with a range and fireplace - I bet that had/has a stone floor too.
     
    Dot99 likes this.
  7. Dot99

    Dot99 Member

    Very possibly. Attached directly behind the kitchen wall there are 2 tiny storage outbuilding spaces (possibly an outside toilet) that have the same floor too.
     

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