Gypcrete, or gypsum concrete, is a lightweight concrete substitute made from sand, gypsum, and water. It is an exceptional choice for underlayment in residential and commercial buildings.
Its unique properties, like fire resistance and sound insulation, make it a go-to option for many construction projects. Here are the types of flooring you can install over gypcrete:
1. Floating Hardwood Floors
Unlike traditional hardwood floors, these aren’t secured to the subfloor with nails or adhesive. The planks are interlocked through a groove and tongue system, creating a floating effect.
This method allows for the natural expansion and contraction of the wood. It can be beneficial in maintaining the integrity of the floor over time. Floating hardwood floors come in various wood species, colors, and finishes.
This can offer an aesthetically pleasing choice that can match any interior decor.
2. Prefinished Engineered Wood Floors
Prefinished engineered wood floors consist of multiple layers of wood veneer, topped with a layer of high-quality hardwood. The prefinished aspect means they arrive from the manufacturer already sanded, stained, and sealed, reducing installation time and mess. Their multilayered structure provides enhanced stability.
This makes them less susceptible to warping or bowing. You can install them as a floating floor. You can easily lay them over the gypsum concrete without nailing or gluing them down.
3. Engineered Bamboo Flooring
Engineered bamboo flooring is an eco-friendly option. Made from layers of bamboo fused under high pressure, this type of flooring offers the unique aesthetic of bamboo combined with the strength of engineered flooring.
Engineered bamboo flooring can be glued directly onto the gypcrete, providing a secure and stable surface. Its natural resistance to moisture and durability makes it an appealing choice for areas with high humidity or heavy foot traffic.
4. Radiant Heat-compatible Wood Floors
Wood flooring isn’t the first choice for covering radiant heat systems. This is due to its natural tendency to expand and contract with temperature changes. Certain types of wood floors can withstand these changes.
These specially engineered wood floors can be installed over gypsum concrete with a radiant heating system. This can offer a warm, comfortable surface underfoot during cold months. The success of this installation greatly depends on the proper design and operation of the radiant heat system.
5. Floating Engineered Hardwood Floors
Made from several layers of wood veneer oriented at right angles to each other, this type of flooring offers enhanced stability compared to solid wood. This makes them less prone to warping or shrinking due to changes in humidity and temperature.
Like floating hardwood floors, these can be installed over gypsum concrete. This can happen without needing nails or adhesive, allowing for easier installation and maintenance.
6. Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT)
Luxury vinyl tile can be a good option for high-traffic areas and moisture-prone spaces, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms. When installing LVT over gypsum concrete underlayment, use a primer to enhance the bond between the gypsum concrete and the adhesive used for the vinyl tiles.
This product can enhance the bond between firm-fill gypsum concrete and the existing structural substrate, including the adhesive for LVT.
7. Ceramic Tile Flooring
Ceramic tile flooring, known for its durability and range of style options, can be a good choice to install over gypsum concrete underlayment. Check if the gypsum concrete is dry before installation. The surface preparation includes applying a primer for enhanced bonding between the gypsum concrete and the tile adhesive.
Once primed, apply the tile adhesive and lay the ceramic tiles in your desired pattern. After the adhesive sets, apply grout between the tiles. Once dry, seal the floor to protect against moisture and staining.
Ceramic tiles are easy to maintain, but grout lines may need periodic resealing to maintain water resistance. With these steps, ceramic tile flooring over gypsum concrete underlayment results in a durable, water-resistant, and aesthetically pleasing floor.
Choosing Flooring To Use Over Gypcrete
While gypcrete’s unique properties require careful consideration when choosing a flooring type, numerous options are available. Whether you prefer hardwood’s natural beauty, engineered flooring’s robustness, or bamboo’s eco-friendliness, there’s a suitable flooring option for your gypsum concrete underlayment.
Contact a local flooring professional today to begin your journey toward a beautiful, long-lasting floor.