Old cottage, updating various floors laid directly on earth


Postby twinkletoes » Wed Feb 20, 2008 7:40 pm

I'd like to do something about the floors in my old thatched cottage. They are either brick or tile, laid (so I am led to believe) on earth. Over the last 200 years, pathways have been worn in them so each room has undulations, and the brick in the kitchen particuarly is very cracked as well.
Taking them up is not an option. - I'd like to start in the hall, which is a nice small area. Part of the floor is quarry tile, then are gaps and dips where doorways have been previously, then there is uneven brick.
Will a levelling screed work to level these floors? Do I try and put membranes undermeath? There is no damp-proofing, but to date, so long as walls and floor can breathe (no fitted carpets, no large furniture sitting directly on floor), its been ok without.
I love these floors, but it's time I did some updating, hence the question. If I can suss the hall, I'd like to do the kitchen with water pipe under floor heating - but that's another story!
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Postby ALDA » Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:46 pm

In my opinion, if you start adding membranes and additional tiles or similar flooring to this floor, you will run the risk of forcing any damp issues you may have, sideways into the walls and timber frames of doorways.

At least with your current situation any damp has a chance to evaporate quickly.

Could you not just replace tiles/bricks that are damaged and try to blend in the the up and downs and live with the uneveness?(rustic charm!)

You may be able to find good brick/tile matches at a salvage yard.
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Postby twinkletoes » Sat Feb 23, 2008 6:22 pm

Thanks Alda

Your point about the damp moving elsewhere is very valid - I could be causing myself other problems in the future. I'd still like to resolve the look of rooms that are part tiles and part brick - maybe I just need to be more imaginative about how I do this.

Has anyone ever taken up individual bricks on floors like this? If so, what did you encounter?
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