Flooring for damp cellar foor - what product

Hi I have a corridor like cellar, with a concrete floor which has broken in many places exposing damp dirt floor. This means I always bring dirt back upstairs when I come back.
The best plan would be to dig it up and put a damp proof course etc.
As I really don't use the cellar that much I would love to lay a "mat" with holes so that the floor can "breath" and more importantly not smell once it had been down there for a while.
Any ideas for the right product..
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First thing I would do is dig up the dead bodies. Next spread ample amounts of lime to eliminate residual odors. Before you pour a new layer of concrete make sure you put down wire screaning to strengthen the concrete pour. (It will also help deter those pesky police from digging it up)
Next and most important...................... errrrrr OOPS WRONG NEWS GROUP

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As money and time come available, just do a small area at a time. There is no point in removing the sound concrete.
Years ago, my parents basement had the same problem. In thier case, tree roots had first pushed the "slab" up and then when the tree died, the "slab" cracked into the void.

Why? That's a major job: bust up a lot of sound concrete; hawl the stuff away, prepare the base, and pour and finish it. You don't need it and the new slab might crack if you missed the cause of the first failure.

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you possibly cound inject goo into the cracks to seal it all up, bit by bit as the mood takes you. Acrylic or silicone presumably - or tar even.
But dont polythene it over, trapping damp like that will lead to mould, and some mould is toxic as well as pongy.
If you want to do it properly, sledge hammer out the old stuff and repour with insulation, dpc and expansion gaps.
NT
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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.co.uk (Yitzak) wrote:

Cheap solution:
Polyethylene sheeting to keep the dampness down and then shipping pallets over that to store things on. If you plan to walk on it a lot, you can lay plywood over the pallets.
--
-JR
Hung like Einstein and smart as a horse
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wrote:

Target has floormats to wipe your feet on. Place one at the door and use it on the rare occasion you go down there. $5 sollution.
Steve B.
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"Steve B." wrote:

(The suggestion of a doormat is a good one, though.)
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Yitzak wrote:

Why do you want the floor to breath? The cheap solution would be to put down outdoor carpet, the kind that has a grass like texture which you often see trailer campers use under the awnings. Other wise put down 4 mil plastic and on top of that put 1/2 outdoor plywood. Or you could just use those fit together floor pads for shops (they have holes and come in bundles of about six 2'x2' squares.
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===============A short term solution........
Keep a pair of wellies at the top of the cellar steps. Many people do this for their gardens so why not do the same for your rare excursions into the cellar?
Cic.
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Thanks for all the posts
Bit worried about the fella - with knowledge of decaying bodies :-)
To answer some of the questions them, its quite cramped down there and musty. If the floor doesn't breathe - it will end up stinking like any textile I've stored down there even in plastic bags. It does get some ventilation but not enough.
I don't want the dirt and hasle of laying concrete as access is only through the house. Should have done this before I did teh house up. Stupid!!
But the extending the mat idea to a long role of perforated "grid like" will give me acess to all the cellar and I can store stuff on it so it doesn't get damp.
Its just finding the right material
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Yitzak wrote:

I don't want my cellar floor to breathe. I live in the NE of the USA, and radon gas is a big problem here. We are advised to seal all cracks to prevent radon from seeping through.

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Yitzak wrote:

Solution 1: 4-6 mil poly sheeting on top of existing floor. 1/2 plywood on top of that. A dehumidifier set at about 55-60% RH.
Solution 2: Break out old concrete in areas where damaged (preferably in a nice even square or rectangular shape). Dig out some dirt (8-10" deep) and level hole bottom. 3-4" of pea gravel or 3/4" stone (whichever is cheapest in your area) tamped down. 2" Syrofoam SM Type 2 cut to fit 4-6 mil poly sheeting or other rubber/bituminous membrane. 3-4" 2500psi or better concrete (with rebar mesh if required by code) A dehumidifier set at about 55-60% RH.
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HEY!!! At least I dont go around calling myself "John Smith" at least you could use a more creative Nom de guerre ; - )

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