Repairing Solid Floors

screed failure in solid floor
(Image credit: iStock)

Old floors come in many forms — which can mean a variety of problems. While the first floors of period homes generally feature some form of timber joist and board construction, ground floors have traditionally consisted of lime-based ground floor slabs or tiles laid straight onto soil. This age-old method worked by allowing moisture from the ground to evaporate out via joints between the tiles. In Victorian times, suspended timbers tended to be used in most rooms, but rudimentary solid floors were still popular in areas such as kitchens and hallways.

However, by the 1930s, solid concrete floors became the norm, right up until the advent of modern beam and block suspended concrete floors in the late 1990s. And this wasn’t just the case in new builds of the mid to late 20th century, as many old rudimentary floors in existing homes were dug up and replaced with concrete.

Ian Rock

Chartered surveyor Ian Rock MRICS is a director is and the author of eight popular Haynes House Manuals, including the Home Extension Manual, the Self Build Manual and Period Property Manual.

Ian is also the founder of Zennor Consultants. In addition to providing house surveys, Zennor Consultants provide professional guidance on property refurbishment and maintenance as well as advising on the design and construction of home extensions and loft conversions, including planning and Building Regulations compliance.

Ian has recently added a 100m2 extension to his home; he designed and project managed the build and completed much of the interior fit-out on a DIY basis.