Moisture Testing Methods for Residential Concrete Floors

cracked wood floor

A wood floor ruined because the concrete slab underneath was still seeping moisture

There’s nothing worse than learning that a wet concrete slab ruined the floor covering you installed in a new home.

Moisture can seep up from a concrete slab into any flooring over it—carpet, wood, engineered hardwood—and there goes your beautiful floor. Hardwood planks curl up, warp, or twist; carpet molds; and engineered hardwood separates or warps.

Preventing the damage is so much easier than the big hassle and expense to replace the floor.

And prevention starts with a residential concrete floor moisture test. In this article, we’ll discuss your testing options and other important aspects to consider, including:

Let’s start with the essential question for a successful floor: How do you check for moisture in a concrete slab?

How to check for moisture in concrete floors

The most effective way to measure the moisture levels in your concrete floor is by using an in situ relative humidity test. However, for most residential applications, a moisture meter is the only reasonable option to measure moisture.

Though a concrete moisture meter has some limitations, sometimes that’s all you are able to test with. It’s the easiest method of moisture testing for residential flooring professionals.

With a pinless concrete moisture meter—such as the C555—you can easily scan a flat slab to get an idea of slab moisture.

How to know if your concrete floor has moisture in it

Many signs, such as sweating or high humidity, can point to a moisture-filled concrete slab. But not all of them will be present in a newly laid slab. Sometimes, it can take a few years to show the tell-tale signs.

The best way to determine if your concrete floor still has moisture is through concrete moisture testing.

Place a concrete meter, like our C555, on the slab and start taking readings.

Why moisture testing residential concrete floors is important

Testing your concrete with a concrete moisture meter can save money, time, and more

Moisture testing might seem like a waste of time, but it can prevent many flooring problems and boost your reputation.

First, you don’t want the floor to fail because you didn’t test the concrete slab. Having to rip up a new wood floor or carpet in a few years to deal with wet concrete is a hassle.

It’s also a lot of wasted materials, wasted money, and wasted time. Why put yourself through all that instead of spending a little extra time to check the moisture levels before moving on? That way, you’ll know you have done everything you can do to determine that the concrete is a-okay and won’t jeopardize a future floor.

Checking for moisture can have a good ripple effect, especially on you as the floor installer. It will save you time and money since you reduce your chances of going back to redo a job. And you can sleep easy at night knowing you have done everything in your power to reduce future problems.

It will save your reputation, too. People will respect you for the thorough and flawless job you do, and they’ll choose you over someone else who doesn’t go the extra mile.

Make moisture testing part of your floor installation routine

If you’re a residential flooring professional, you must test the concrete. It’s the only way to be sure the flooring job is done right.

Use the Wagner C555 concrete meter to help you determine if it’s time to move forward with a floor covering installation.

You’ll never want to skip testing again!

Take a look at the C555 today.

Last updated on February 23rd, 2024

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