Experiencing a setback in your schedule due to an uneven floor height when renovating your flooring system may be inevitable. And this may consequently have a significant effect on your overall budget depending on the kind of method you have preferred to use. So, what are the cheapest overall methods when it comes to raising floor height?
Without much ado, the cheapest ways you can effectively raise your floor height include the use of some insulation material to fill the floor, installation of a wooden frame subfloor, the use of a floor leveling compound, and the use of deck mud. You should note that the most suitable approach is usually determined by the flooring material you decide to use for your project.
Reasons for Raising Floor Height
The main reason you may need to consider raising your floor height is if it’s important that the affected floor space and the floor level of the surrounding areas are equal. Typically, this process is done during a renovation.
How do you picture a situation where the floor in your kitchen or bathroom is not flush with the passageway? You can imagine how not aesthetically pleasing such an arrangement would be and how it could be a mobility bottleneck for a senior citizen if you have any in the home.
Moreover, there may be a need to raise a sunken floor when changing your floor type (particularly from wood to tiles), which involves stripping away the old flooring. Here, raising the height would be needed to make the new material work.
The Most Affordable Methods to Raise Floor Height
If you want the cheapest ways to raise your floor height, then you will want to check out options such as floor leveling compound, insulation materials, and deck mud. The most suitable method will depend on the project. This is because some of these ways are best for some specific situations.
The Use of a Floor Leveling Compound
Using a floor leveling compound is an inexpensive method to raise the floor in a particular room, making it match others in the house. Homeowners find this method great as it works when applied to concrete directly. So, this may not be the most suitable method if your project is not concrete-related.
To get a floor leveling compound, you can check online or visit your local home improvement store. After purchasing it, the installation process is usually straightforward. Check below for the steps:
- Mark the Height: Start by marking out the height you aim for. Do this by considering every factor, including your flooring material.
- Clean the Floor: Thoroughly clean the floor to remove every dirt and grease and ensure that the compound sticks.
Note: Check the instructions on how to use the leveling compound to know if a coat of latex primer should be used first. If the primer is meant to be applied first, do that and wait to see it dry.
- Mix the compound: Mix the leveling compound with water in an 18.92-liter (5-gallon) bucket. To get a perfect and consistent mix, attach to a drill a paddle mixer.
- Apply the compound: Pour the leveling compound directly on the floor (from one corner to another). Ensure you do the work quickly within the 10 to 20 minutes setting time.
- More compound: Ensure you mix and apply the compound again until it gets to the desired height. Then allow the compound to set and cure for about 24 hours. After it’s completely cured, you can go ahead to install the chosen material.
The Use of Insulation Material
A few sheets of thick insulation material can work effectively to raise your floor height, depending on the size of the area.
All you do here is reduce the material to the shape of the space and stack many pieces to have the desired height. Notwithstanding, this method is only applicable if carpets are used as the flooring material. Sometimes some individuals may put light concrete block on the insulation material. However, this can make the process more difficult and inflate the project’s overall cost.
Moreover, you should consider this method for the floor that will get a large amount of moisture (bathroom floor). This is because more water will chip away at the material until it gets to the decay stage– in addition to the unpleasant smell bound that would come from the floor (So, consider the method for your kitchen or bathroom floor).
Installation of a Wooden Frame Subfloor
You can raise your floor height by constructing a rightly matched wooden base. This method is ideal when the main flooring material is wood. However, it’s also applicable for materials such as vinyl or carpets.
It’s crucial that you are careful with the measurement during the construction of the wooden base. For instance, you must consider the height of each floorboard if you will have the base covered up with wooden flooring. You must also ensure that the wooden base receives good termite treatment for extended use time.
After installing the base, ensure that the electrical circuits and insulation are properly placed. Then cover the base using 3/4-inch thickness plywood to finish the project.
The Use of Deck Mud
This method is best when tiles are used on the surface. To start, you need to get enough deck mud for the project. After that, follow the steps below:
- Clean the floor: The cleaning doesn’t need to be thorough; just ensure it’s okay to work on. Then layout chicken wire across the floor.
- Pour the mud: Pour the deck mud in the floor (to the center from one side of the room and again to the center from the other side of the room). To ensure the mud is compact and level, use a compactor and a level.
Note: The mud must be high enough so it can be flush with the old floor.
- Pour the mud into the center: After getting a flush and compact finish, pour the mud into the center to complete the process.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How do I know if my floor is level?
To know if your floor is level, place your 4- to 6-foot beam level on the floor and measure the gap between the level and the floor. Mark any parts higher than 1/8 inch along the floor and slide the level slowly over the floor to see each part of the subfloor.
How high should I raise my floor?
No more than 3/16 inches over a 10-foot span is the variation recommended by most flooring manufacturers.
Do I need professional help to raise my floor height?
You can raise your floor height yourself if you know how it’s done. But if you’re not, there is nothing wrong with hiring a professional.
You shouldn’t spend too much trying to raise your floor height. Any of the methods explained above are cheap and available depending on the type of floor you want. You should know that the use of the wrong method can end up making the process very costly. So, you should get professional help if you’re not sure of the best approach to choose.