Flooring Options for Basement Floors

by | Dec 29, 2020

Ready to start your project?

You’re remodeling your basement or sprucing up a previously finished space, but when it comes to flooring, you’re not sure what to choose. The flooring you select for your basement requires more foresight than any other room in the house.

We have to think about potential water damage, humidity, temperature changes, and how your new floor will react to all of that.

These flooring options for basement floors come with their own benefits and drawbacks. Let’s weigh the pros and cons, and find out exactly which flooring material will work best in your basement.

Hardwood Flooring

One of the most popular choices for flooring in all of North America, hardwood works well in basements that have humidity and temperature control. Apart from being aesthetic, hardwood can last for decades.

Pros

  • Durable, long-lasting design
  • Extremely aesthetic; works well with bouncing light (on fresh finishing) to brighten up any basement
  • Transforms the space; you’ll forget it’s a basement
  • Increases home value
  • Doesn’t fade (lack of UV light in most basements)

Cons

  • Easily damaged by high levels of humidity and moisture
  • Susceptible to warping or being completely destroyed by flooding
  • Can be pricey depending on the total square footage

Concrete Flooring

There’s dusty, abrasive concrete, and then there’s poured and polished concrete. Concrete floors are about as durable as you can get, and once they’re finished, they don’t contribute pollutants to the air like unfinished concrete does.

Pros

  • Extremely resistant to temperature changes
  • Does not warp from moisture damage/flooding
  • Only requires a new finish every ten years or so
  • Can be a DIY project or poured by professionals depending on preference

Cons

  • Lengthy installation time from mixing to pouring and curing
  • Polished concrete floors can feel too slippery
  • Long curing time in high humidity environments
  • Expensive compared to other options at your disposal

Laminate Flooring

Laminate is inexpensive, DIY-friendly, and emulates the look of wood and tile. While the texture and hardness is definitely different, you could use this on a solid subfloor in your basement.

Pros

  • Wildly inexpensive; laminate flooring is one of the most popular choices for basements due to the low cost per square foot
  • Relatively maintenance-free choice, all you have to do is keep it clean and make sure moisture doesn’t creep underneath
  • Easy to install for professionals or DIY warriors
  • More aesthetic options than most other flooring types

Cons

  • It’s a top basement choice specifically because when basements flood, it’s cheap to rip up and replace
  • You can’t refinish laminate flooring, so once it’s torn or covered in scratches, it’s time for it to go
  • Not resistant to moisture or humidity

Carpet

Carpeting may be the most niche choice for basements, particularly due to humidity and moisture damage. In a properly finished basement with excellent temperature control, it could be a good addition.

Pros

  • Completely temperature-resistant flooring; it won’t warp with heat or extreme cold
  • Inexpensive to median-priced flooring option
  • Safer flooring option for kids (teen wreck room, children’s playroom, etc.)
  • Can be a DIY project without any professional installation

Cons

  • Can grow mold and spread spores if moisture is present for too long
  • Will be completely destroyed from flooding
  • Collects dirt; difficult to keep clean in basement areas

Tile

Durable and designed to last, tile flooring is a very popular choice for basements. While the installation can be strenuous and be more than a one-day project, there are plenty of reasons to select tile.

Pros

  • Water resistant; easy to clean up from a large spill or a small flood without replacing the flooring
  • Durable to abrasions, scrapes, and overall damage
  • Extremely simple to clean
  • Long lifespan—tile floors can last for decades with moderate maintenance efforts

Cons

  • No heat retention whatsoever; these floors feel cold most of the time
  • Full tile flooring for a basement can get pretty expensive; the bigger the basement, the more it will cost
  • Tile is extremely smooth and can be very slippery, especially if any amount of water is present

Change Your Basement Today

At Interior Excellence, we specialize in basement remodels and interior design. If you want to remodel your basement but don’t know where to begin, give us a call at (908) 218-0200, or request a quote today. It’s never too late to get started on a basement renovation.