subfloor - The foundation beneath the beauty

Why is the subfloor important?

Regardless which type of  flooring is being installed, every floor will require some kind of subfloor prep. Not having the correct subfloor preparation is likely to invalidate any warranty on the floor covering. Every project is unique and will have its own subfloor prep requirements. Careful and correct preparation of the subfloor is a major part of a satisfactory floor covering installation. Roughness or unevenness of the subfloor will telegraph through the new floor covering, resulting in an unsightly surface and excessive wear on high spots. Proper subfloor preparation and suitable underlayment installation are essential for a trouble-free job. At Baileys we are experts in subfloor preperation and are always happy to offer our advice free of charge.  

Before proceeding with any installation, there are a few questions to factor in before proceeding:

  • What condition is the subfloor in?
    • Five words to remember in subfloor prep:
      • Clean
      • Smooth
      • Structurally Sound
      • Level
      • Dry
  • Has the subfloor been tested for Moisture and pH?
    • All concrete subfloors on any level should be tested for moisture and pH and documented
    • Hardwood installations over wood subfloors should be checked for moisture and documented
    • Have sealers or curing compounds been used?
  • What is the subfloor and what is it over?
    • Concrete, Gypsum, or Wood

All of these and other conditions can vary from job to job. Each set of unique conditions has a very specific series of steps required to prepare the substrate prior to installing the prep materials and then, the finish flooring. 

The finished floor is only as good as the base or the subfloor is. The make-up of the subfloor and the condition and quality of the subfloor, directly affect the performance of the finished  flooring. If the system components are not as recommended or as required, the flooring can fail. 

If the condition of the subfloor is poor, not properly cleaned, not dry enough, and not flat enough, the flooring performance will suffer and require a call back and some type repair, maybe even reinstallation.


Before starting any installation, it is critical to make sure that the subflooring is ready to have flooring installed over it. There are now countless specialized products to help installers ensure that subfloors are clean, flat and dry enough to install flooring over. 


Our Subfloor Specialist Partners