Damp ? Concrete Floor


When people walk into our living room, they exclaim: "ooh ! - paving slabs". After a while, they say "Oh, its only concrete, but hasn't it been laid well". I think the latter is true. House is one of five in a terrace, converted from a mill in 1902. All living room floors are identical, so pretty sure floor is about 100 years old.
Sometimes, small areas of the floor, particularly around the fireplace, change colour, becoming darker than usual. My wife reckons this happens when it rains. I'm not so sure: I think it might coincide with heavy occupation (many people breathing, cooking etc).
My wife says "Oh no, we've got damp coming up through the floor. We'll never be able to sell the house !". She wants to rip up the floor and replace it. I think that's nuts. Apart from colour change, floor doesn't feel damp, no salt deposits - I even tried laying cling-film on floor to see if "damp" would accumulate - but floor is so dry that cling film won't stick and eventually blows away. So I don't think we have a damp problem at all. This is causing much domestic tension.
Also, over the years people have dripped paint on the floor, mixed render on the floor, and generally disrespected it. I wonder if what is changing colour is layers of soot ?, varnish ? grease ? or who knows what has ended up on the floor over the years. I'm inclined to take a serious power cleaner to the floor, e.g. the STR701 Multi Preparation System ( see http://www.nfpc-hire.co.uk/str701.htm ) to get rid of paint, drips of render, and anything else that's lurking there - and then seal the floor with that transparent concrete sealant stuff.
Wife says: "Why waste 200 pounds on machine hire and consumables when you'll only have to rip up the floor anyway ?".
Is anybody out there brave enough to step into this argument. Anyone had similar floor, or experience with the STR701. We would both value your opinions !!
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"Dabbler" wrote: When people walk into our living room, they exclaim: "ooh ! - paving slabs". After a while, they say "Oh, its only concrete, but hasn't it been laid well". I think the latter is true. House is one of five in a terrace, converted from a mill in 1902. All living room floors are identical, so pretty sure floor is about 100 years old.
Sometimes, small areas of the floor, particularly around the fireplace, change colour, becoming darker than usual. My wife reckons this happens when it rains. I'm not so sure: I think it might coincide with heavy occupation (many people breathing, cooking etc).
My wife says "Oh no, we've got damp coming up through the floor. We'll never be able to sell the house !". She wants to rip up the floor and replace it. I think that's nuts. Apart from colour change, floor doesn't feel damp, no salt deposits - I even tried laying cling-film on floor to see if "damp" would accumulate - but floor is so dry that cling film won't stick and eventually blows away. So I don't think we have a damp problem at all. This is causing much domestic tension.
Also, over the years people have dripped paint on the floor, mixed render on the floor, and generally disrespected it. I wonder if what is changing colour is layers of soot ?, varnish ? grease ? or who knows what has ended up on the floor over the years. I'm inclined to take a serious power cleaner to the floor, e.g. the STR701 Multi Preparation System ( see http://www.nfpc-hire.co.uk/str701.htm ) to get rid of paint, drips of render, and anything else that's lurking there - and then seal the floor with that transparent concrete sealant stuff.
Wife says: "Why waste 200 pounds on machine hire and consumables when you'll only have to rip up the floor anyway ?".
Is anybody out there brave enough to step into this argument. Anyone had similar floor, or experience with the STR701. We would both value your opinions !! ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
To test for damp, put some newspaper down and leave covered with a polythene sheet for a few days. Changing colours on flooring can be due to changes in external/internal lighting. When it rains the weather is usually duller. If the concrete was changing colour due to moisture is would feel damp to the touch. Does it feel damp when it appears darker?
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Codswallop wrote:

Not to me. Floor always feels cold, but that is no surprise. But the "darker" and "lighter" bits don't feel damp, or even colder. I like the sound of a long-term newspaper/plastic sheet test, and will try that in due course - thanks.
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