Need help! Buying house with questionable floor

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Dsking85

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hey all,

Buying a house now and have some concerns about the floor. It’s a slab foundation and the installer seems to have put solid 3/4” ash glued directly to the concrete. From what I’m reading this is a terrible idea. Debating whether or not to buy because we really don’t want something that will fall apart in a short period of time. What do you guys think? What should I look for to decide? Thanks.
 

highup

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Hard to tell without knowing what glue he used or what the slab conditions are. They make adhesives today guaranteed to block moisture from coming up and damaging the wood. If he used one of those and applied it correctly you might not have anything to worry about. They also make moisture blocking coating that are applied first, then the adhesive.
How long has it been in place? Is there anything about the wood that looks questionable? Cupping or warping?
Are you sure it's solid and not engineered? Good engineered floors have a pretty thick top layer. Engineered wood floors may only expand 10% as much of solid hardwood, lessening your concerns.
Is the slab on grade?
How old is the home? It's possible if the home is newer there may be a vapor barrier under the slab.
Is the home on top of a hill or does rainwater flow down towards the home, like being near the bottom of a hill.
Where is the home located?
 
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Dsking85

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Thanks for the reply. I think it’s been in place for a couple of years. It’s solid and not engineered. The wood looks fine, I didn’t see any signs of any issues. The slab is on grade and the house was built in 2005. Water will not flow towards the house. We are in central NC. Thanks!!
 

Ernesto

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Could have plywood shot to the concrete, then nailed the wood to it.
 

Dsking85

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No plywood. We just got some more info from the sellers. The adhesive used was Roberts 1535 4 in 1.
 

highup

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Sounds as if it was installed properly. If it wasn't, I'd assume over a couple of years any moisture issues would have shown up by now. The site location sounds good from what you describe as far as water not going towards your house. Water draining away from a house is always a good thin, wood or not.
I don't suppose it's possible to find out the original home contractors name to ask about a moisture barrier membrane under the slab.
I'm not a wood floor installer. I'm just asking some things to get more info so that someone like Ernesto who knows a lot about wood floors, can better help you.
http://www.robertsconsolidated.com/products/4-in-1-wood-flooring-adhesive/

It does say solid 3/4"
https://images.homedepot-static.com/catalog/pdfImages/11/11e9b900-c19f-4ac3-9dbd-cdbc562d04d1.pdf
 

Ernesto

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Yup, you can do solid glue down on concrete but it's a pain in the rear unless all your wood is really straight. The big plus about nailing is the nailer will bring most gaps together. Not all wood is perfectly straight.
 
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Dan

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It's really hard to get lumber to dry perfectly flat. Nearly won't happen.

First of all, you have to consider the way wood shrinks. It will shrink more on the side that was closer to the outside of the log. both in width and length. I always tried to get lumber stackers to place the bark side of the board down. Gravity rules.

Then once you have dry lumber, the side matcher operator wants to place the flooring blank into the machine so the prettiest side will be the face of the flooring. One big area where you can make money or go broke.

Now, this board flipping this board this way and that board that way, makes for boards with a hump and boards with a U so to speak. Makes for a hard way to get solid stuck to the floor.
 

Ernesto

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Just got off the horn with a guy who is intent on buying solid from Allegany Mt. Hardwoods for his house here in Tucson. Wants to glue a solid 3-5-7 in on concrete. I said good luck with that. He said their crews do it all the time in Texas and CA. Whatever have at it. Didn't even want to do a ply subfloor due to height issues. I said I have a company that makes 3/4 3 ply with just as much meat on top as solid. Eh! Does not understand. Then sorry dude, good luck. Still tried to get me to go out and give him a quote. ZZZZZZZZZZZ

I have glued some solid to concrete but most was 5/16 or 3/4 mesquite shorts. Big difference. Still a PITA!.
 

Ernesto

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Thanks for the reply. I think it’s been in place for a couple of years. It’s solid and not engineered. The wood looks fine, I didn’t see any signs of any issues. The slab is on grade and the house was built in 2005. Water will not flow towards the house. We are in central NC. Thanks!!
Take a wood stick with you, like a broom handle and tap around on the floor and see how many hollow spots you can find. A golf ball works well to. I would be hesitant to buy it. I know a great certified hardwood inspector that lives in NC if you want to pay him $$ to come and inspect it. Home inspectors know jack about flooring.
 

Ernesto

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Did I mention I'm currently gluing down a 7 in 3/8 engineered thats a POC with Sika T-21? Soooo much not fun.
 

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