Floor cupping occurs when there is build up of moisture in a homes crawl space or standing water is present. When humidity is high, and the hardwood absorbs to much moisture from the subfloor, cracked boards, pealing finishes, staining or floor buckling can be a result in floor cupping. If the cupping is throughout the home, high moister is the reason.
If the floor elevation/slab elevation is at or below grade than water problems are in your future. Florida has a high water table that’s why Florida building code says you have to be 12″ above finish grade. If you are not above grade with your first floor the water-table will comes in contact with the floors slab during rain events. the vapor barrier will rot off over time and damage to the first floors finishes will become noticeable.
Keeping your homes relative humidity below 50% is the best prevention. Installing dehumidifiers large enough to handle the area in or under the home, during the summer months can help prevent floor cupping. Run your air conditioner on hot days. Make sure your Heat Recovery Ventilation system is turned off during the summer, or damp air from outside will continue to come into your home.
Make sure standing water is not present under the home due to drainage or leaks. Making sure rainwater is diverted away from the foundation, the ground needs to slope away from the house.
Waterproof sealant on the concrete or covering the ground in the crawlspace with thick plastic sheeting can help reduce humidity under the home. Subfloor moisture is another common cause of floor cupping. The subfloor has a higher moisture content than the wood its self. Using barriers like Aquabar underlay during new construction or renovations can prevent subfloor moisture. A more durable route like engineered hardwood is a good solution designed for use over concrete. Leaks can also be a cause of hardwood cupping, if not fixed in a timely manner the cupping can spread. Spills should be cleaned immediately. Use hardwood-cleaner instead of wet mops or excessive water when cleaning hardwood flooring.
Foundation Waterproofing 101 is the only waterproofing expert in Florida and we fully understand how to properly correct your Floor Cupping issues.
Please feel free to call our office and ask any questions or to schedule your free inspection.