We have a basement floor! Mario and his crew came out early yesterday morning and by 8:30 the concrete truck had arrived. In no time they’d poured the entire pad and screeded (leveled it out).At that point the rest of Mario’s crew left, but he stayed for the rest of the day carefully hand troweling the surface to a burnished finish. The pressure gauge on the radiant PEX tubing never wavered, so we’re confident that nothing was damaged during the pour.

Initial screed

Initial screed

There was one minor issue, in that Mario didn’t want to leave the J bolts I’d carefully positioned during the pour because he couldn’t smooth the finish with them in the way. I explained that I didn’t want to drill or nail into the finished concrete for fear of hitting the PEX tubing. Ultimately we left some of the J bolts in position and pulled some of the others. I took a bunch of measurements and photos to help me position new anchor bolts in the finished slab, but I’m not thrilled about the nerve-wracking possibility of hitting a tube and losing a whole loop of the radiant heat.

Finished floor

Finished floor

This weekend I plan to install the last of the basement windows and the back door. I’ve installed the window buck this past weekend to ensure I wasn’t going to be making any more dust. The next project is to stain and seal the concrete once it’s cured. I’ve been doing research on the specific products and techniques we’ll be using for that. I think with the finish that Mario put on the floor, it’s going to look really nice with the stain and seal.

Troweled finish

Troweled finish

This feels like a really important milestone. We started breaking up the concrete of the old floor over a year ago and never imagined it would take so long to get one back. We’ve gained close to a foot of headroom in the basement, a critical difference that makes it a much more usable space. In addition we’ve got the rough drainage in place for our basement bathroom and utility sink, our new water main and sewer, and an interior weeping system that at this point really needs to be hooked up, since the sump basin has almost completely filled with water! With the new windows, the new back steps, the painted ceiling and beam, the tuckpointed brick walls and the all new electrical outlets and lights, it’s a night and day difference from where it was. While I really expected to be at this point in October, I’m happy that we’re finally here now and looking forward to the steps ahead.

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2 Responses to Basement Floor Pour

  1. Jen says:

    Looks amazing! I am considering doing this to a home near Lincoln Square in order to create a mother-in-law suite and am curious how much this part of the project cost in total? I would also love names of contractors you used that you were happy with.


  2. Matt says:

    Thanks! We used Mario Garduno for the concrete. He’s actually got some photos of our basement and back steps on his page. There are a few things that didn’t turn out perfectly, but we were pleased overall. We’re always happy with our electrician, Percy Harrison, and our radiant heating contractor, Lester Wysocki. Our plumbers do good work, but we have a hard time recommending them after how long everything has taken. We had hoped to be done with the basement by November of last year and now we’re looking at June. Almost all of that delay is due to the plumbers.

    I’d be happy to share costs, but can you be more specific about what you mean by “this part of the project”?

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