A floor is simply the bottom part of a structure, sometimes a vehicle, room or house. Floors range from simple wood at a cave to highly complex multilayer surfaces created with modern technology. Many floors can be metal, hardwood, plastic or any other suitable material that will support the intended weight. Modern technology has also allowed manufacturers to produce durable and shock absorbing floors that are suitable for commercial buildings and also for the home.
Most commercial structures are built with concrete floors that are fixed to the concrete foundation and mounted on beams and joists above the ground. These floors must be braced into place using steel bracing at each corner and a heavy layer of concrete is used as a layer between the concrete and the beam. This layer provides structural support to the entire floor and is usually up to three times greater in density than the concrete itself. As well, this floor is usually sealed and treated to prevent moisture from penetrating the surface, which could weaken the floor. In some cases, a subfloor, made from Styrofoam or similar material, is below the surface of the floor, permitting dampness to permeate the concrete and damaging the floor beneath.
For housing applications, many floors are raised above the ground and placed on beams with large openings, typically around ten feet or more. In many cases, the floors are on concrete pads with open beams between them, allowing them to serve as legs and provide stability. When more space is required, however, raised floors can be installed on beams with wide openings and concrete slabs are used as beams with multiple openings, allowing them to serve as full-width feet.
In the home, however, flooring is most often placed on joists under existing floors, and the joists may include heaped levels, as well as crossboards. The joists provide stability to the floor and also act as insulation against sound. Depending upon the type of home or building and the other floors in close proximity to it (such as bedrooms and living rooms), the joists and beams may also be required to be sound-resistant and to be constructed of proper materials such as solid hardwood or plywood.
In addition to the main components of FLOOR, sometimes other elements are needed for optimum floor performance. Such elements may include an underfloor heating system, an air to water transfer system, a sump pump, or even a system for cleaning moisture from concrete floors. Many systems use a cooling fan in order to efficiently move warm air upward through the floor and a sump pump removes water from the floor without creating a moist environment. If your FLOOR has wood floors, then special care should be taken to preserve their finish and to keep wood floors from absorbing water.
FLOOR installation should be done in consultation with experts such as a professional flooring installer. The joists should be properly prepared to hold the weight of the floor covering. For FLOOR installation to be successful, you should also choose the correct subfloor material that is suited to your floor type. For example, concrete floors are better installed on floors that are free from bumps and ridges. There are many more options available to you as you make choices about the floor construction.