Hardwood on concrete slab

Q: We own a small condo on Cape Cod. It’s ground level, built years ago with a concrete slab floor. We wish to replace the wall to wall rug with hardwood flooring.

How do we go about this?

A: You might consider a product such as Mirage engineered which can be glued to the slab and offers quite a healthy top layer of wood. www.miragefloors.com

Torly’s also has some nice looking click joint products with real wood surface. Not near as thick as Mirage, but fairly durable for what it is. www.torlys.com

Plywood over barrier over slab

Related Q: We are going to have a house build in east Tennessee on a lake. It will be slab on grade. We would like to have solid hardwood floors installed. I know that engineered hardwood is a better choice, but I much prefer the solid hardwood. Are there things we can do to make this feasible such as a barrier then plywood over the concreate? Anything with the foundation? Thank you for any advice.

A: You would be wise to have someone test the concrete after it is cured for water seepage.  I don’t know what the level of your water table is there.  Also, solid hardwood is likely going to be 3/4″ thick, fastened into a solid wooden sub straight with 2″ long cleats, nails or staples. So, that sub floor needs to be about 1 1/2″ thick or else install a subfloor on sleepers.