Why Do You Need a Moisture Barrier Under Laminate Flooring?

A woman walks on laminate floors.

In order to properly install laminate on concrete, a moisture barrier should be used underneath. Many people wonder why they have to install a moisture barrier under the laminate and if it's really necessary. Here are the basics of why you need a moisture barrier under your laminate floors.

Moisture Issues

Concrete slabs are notorious for allowing moisture to come up through them. There is a certain amount of moisture that can make its way through concrete when the ground is saturated. After a heavy rain, concrete will soak up some of the moisture around it. This moisture can then be released into the laminate if there is no moisture barrier present.

What Can Happen

A man installs laminate floors.

While laminate is not really a wood floor, there is some wood in the core. The laminate core is made out of pressed together wood. If water touches the core of the laminate, it will swell up drastically in some cases. Therefore, if you allow water to come up through the floor and get in the laminate, it will start to buckle and warp. This can cause the joints to be damaged permanently if you don't dry out the floor in time. Having a moisture barrier will do a lot towards protecting your flooring investment.