What are the Best Tips for Leveling a Basement Floor?

Dan Cavallari

Leveling a basement floor is not a terribly difficult job, but it will take several days to do properly. Be sure to research the different products used for leveling a basement floor, and understand that the compound, once dry, will not be able to support a significant amount of weight on its own. Another type of flooring such as tile, wood, or stone is often placed over the finished product to help support the weight of furniture or other heavy objects. When starting the project, be sure to clear out the space completely to allow for an open workspace.

A man installing a basement floor.
A man installing a basement floor.

The first step in leveling a basement floor is to clean and properly fill the existing concrete. Caulk can be used to fill in small holes and cracks, and the caulk should be pressed into the hole and flattened at the top to ensure a smooth finish. Let it dry for the amount specified on the product's tube. In the mean time, clean the rest of the concrete by sweeping it thoroughly and getting rid of all debris. Tape the perimeter of the room at the bottom of the walls using expansion tape, which will help form a clean edge when the leveling products are used later on.

Unfinished basement floors can be unlevel.
Unfinished basement floors can be unlevel.

When leveling a basement floor, it is helpful to know where the dips in the concrete are located. To identify trouble spots, take a long, straight board that is light enough to handle easily. Place it on the ground and slide it across the floor. Use a marker to mark where gaps exist between the bottom of the board and the top of the concrete. These are the trouble areas that will need leveling. Once these trouble spots have been identified, it is time to mix the leveling compound used for leveling a basement floor.

This compound is actually a type of concrete that is mixed with water, and the solution is thin enough that it will self-level once poured. It will find low spots and pool there, but once it pools, it may be helpful to level the top off with a straight board. Mix the leveling compound in a wheelbarrow or large bucket, and pour the compound across the floor in foot-wide (.3 meter) strips. As the compound pools, one can level it with a board and then leave it to dry. The compound must dry for up to 48 hours before any other flooring material can be built on top of it.

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Discussion Comments


I have tried to use these leveling compounds for my house floor, and now I am really happy about it.

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