concrete floor options

i've just spent 2 weekends digging out, what was an earth floor, and am getting ready to lay a concrete floor. my original plan was to lay 3" insulation and a 4" slab, and as this was to be a working kitchen (cafe refurbishment) i was just going to paint finish the concrete floor but i've been dissuaded from this because my builders say it will be difficult to get a good finish, good enough for the final floor, so i've been thinking about alternatives but am confused as the best way to go
1. sand, DPM, insulation, concrete slab, battens and flooring grade chipboard
2. concrete slab, DPM, insulation, flooring grade chipboard
3. sand, DPM, insulation, concrete slab, flooring grade chipboard
the final surface is likely to be marmoleum (maybe tiles)
ie is the insulation better under or over the slab, is there any merit having a small airgap provided by the battens or could the chipboard be laid straight on the concrete? what thickness of insulation would be recommended? the room is approx 5m x 3.5m
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I'd check with your local Environmental Health lot before you get too far with the design. They may have very strong views about what is acceptable - I recall that some years ago a relative wasn't allowed to have loose-laid floor covering, because of the nasties that could crawl under it, so any design that incorporated a mouse-run might not find favour.
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Kevin Poole
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In fact you'll probably do yourself a huge favour - if this is to be a commercial venture - to install a proper quality laminate with a tubbed perimeter on to radiused corners.
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Mike W



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snipped-for-privacy@googlemail.com wrote:

That is conventional., and places thermal mass inside the insulation.

That should work as well, and will be warmer on the feet.

Same as one minus that battens? that will work too, but beware unlevel screed..

Insulation? As much as you can afford. No great difference the order things go provided the DPM is the far side of the insulation.
Given you want chip, I'd actually be tempted to put down sand, and DPM then make up a joisted floor, set it all up level, fill the bottom half with concrete and infill the top with insulation, then board over..if you are concerned bout the wood being in contact with cold cement, raise the wooden floor a little.
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I have just last weekend taken up a suspended chipboard floor layed over insulation. Although common practice I would not recomend a suspended chipboard floor in any room which had plumbing in it. If you get a leak there is no where for the water to go and it gets trapped under the chipboard and very quickly causes major problems.
Interestingly I had someone replace the floor in question with a concrete screed and lino was laid straight on top. The finish was 1st class and the client very happy. There is no way that I could get a good enough surface, and I know that the builder who helped me with my barn conversion couldn't get a good enough finish, but with the right person it is possible and I would suggest the best long term solution. 3" is maybe more than is needed, but again advice on this should be sought.
Good luck Calum Sabey (NewArk Traditional Kitchens 01556 690544)
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levelling compound may be quicker than chip and is floodproof.
But the fact you had an earth floor raises qs not addressed yet. Suggest asking about that in: http://periodpropertyshop.co.uk/phpBB2/viewforum.php?f=1
NT
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On 11 Feb, 19:39, snipped-for-privacy@googlemail.com wrote:

For a really good concrete finish, use a power float. They will almost polish the concrete. This can be so smooth that some fishes say they must not be used on it. I would avoid the use of chipboard in a food environment. It's porous and a bug trap. Talk to your local environmental health people.
John
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