Ask Your Question

Angie's List Answers is the trusted spot to ask home improvement and health questions and get answers from service companies, health providers and consumers. For ratings and reviews on companies in your area, search Angie's List.

Top 30 Days Experts
Rank Leader Points*
1 kstreett 240
2 Guest_9020487 110
3 Guest_9190926 105
4 GoldenKid 100
5 ahowell 95
6 KnowledgeBase 95
7 skbloom 80
8 Guest_98024861 70
9 Guest_9311297 70
10 Guest_9400529 70

*Updates every 4 hours

Browse Projects By Category

Question DetailsAsked on 3/5/2012

How much time should be alotted for a new house to settle before installing new hard wood floors?

I am a consumer.

Do you have the same question? Follow this Question

2 Answers

Voted Best Answer

There is no time period to your question. These type of things vary by region of the country you live in. Basically the depth of bedrock and if the contractor that built you house took soil compaction tests. In short if you have a 95% compaction rate your safe to lay any flooring without any problems in the process of building a home. But if your soil compaction rate is below a 95% and your house is built on land where the bedrock is vary deep your house will continue to settle for years. The depth of bedrock is the main reason why some cities don't have skyscrapers. Hope that helps. The first signs of poor compaction is ceiling and walls with continuous cracks. Also the soil around your house will sink in with good rain storms. Both are bad signs of pour compaction.


Answered 8 years ago by KP


As was said in the previous answer if the house was properly designed and built you should be able to install any type of flooring you want by the time you reach that stage of construction. If you have significant settling already you are in for constant problems for years to come. If you do see signs of settling in your new home file a claim immediately. It is not going to get better.

Todd Shell
Todd's Home Services

Answered 8 years ago by Todd's Home Services


As the other commenters stated, the foundation "settling in" due to the addition of the house load on the new foundations should be completed with no problem by the time the house is physically ready for flooring installation. Longer-term settlement due to compressible soils occurs over a VERY long time - typically for 10-100 years till 95% complete, so waiting for that to maybe happen is not feasible, and in most cases is so little (a fraction of an inch) that it is not noticeable in the house.

However, one thing not mentioned is moisture - I would recommend that the house be fully enclosed and under normal temperature (70 degree range) heat / air conditioning for a minimum of a week and preferably two weeks before installing any "hard" flooring (hardwood, laminate, tile, stone, etc), especially if the flooring is being nailed, glued or grouted down rather than floating. That will give the subfloor materials time to acclimate to the "permanent" humidity, and will reduce shrinkage cracking in the flooring. It also gives time for any wetness in the wood due to exposure to rain or snow before the roof and siding got on (unfortunately, a common issue) to evaporate before you seal it in with flooring and possibly get a buckling or mold issue.

Usually, this drying time is not an issue as by the time the drywall and paint is done at least that much time has gone by, but it could be an issue in a last-season rush to finish a home, or in mass-built homes were the crews move from house to house in production-line where an entire house can be built in a week from start of framing (after foundations are already in) to ready to sell.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

Related Questions

Terms Of Use
Privacy Policy