How To Screed A Floor

concrete floor

Self-levelling compound
Bag of all-in-one mortar mix
Trowel
Bucket
Mixing tool
Concrete sealer solution
Cold chisel
Club hammer
Broom
Steel float

Budget

Self-levelling compound is around £15 for a 20kg sack

Time

All a full day's work for a small room

Skill

Don't attempt this if you're not confident you can do a good, thorough job and be prepared to put in some serious elbow grease

 Clean And Repair The Floor

Step One: Clean And Repair The Floor

Rake out loose material from any cracks and holes with a trowel and brush all the dust off the floor. Scrub any oil or grease stains with a detergent or sugar soap and leave to dry. Fill in large holes (deeper than 5mm), cracks and any other damage by mixing up a ready-mixed bag of mortar and trowelling over the areas. Allow to dry.

Remove Skirting Boards

Step Two: Remove Skirting Boards

Remove any skirting boards, using a chisel and hammer, being careful not to damage the wall behind. It's unlikely that you will be able to reuse the majority of the skirting boards, but try to remove them gently, just in case you can.

Seal The Floor

Step Three: Seal The Floor

Coat the concrete surface with a concrete sealer, which you can buy from DIY shops. Allow to dry, according to the manufacturer's instructions.

step 4

Step Four: Mix The Compound

Mix the self-levelling compound in a large bucket, according to the instructions. The mix sets quickly so you may have to work over a larger floor in sections. Don't try to dilute a mix that already begun to set.

Spread The Mix

Step Five: Spread The Mix

Use a float to spread a thin even coating of the mix over the floor, starting in the corner opposite the door. Leave the compound to fully harden before walking on the floor.

Illustrations: Ed Roberts

  • Some compounds shouldn't be used over underfloor heating - check with the makers before using.
  • Make sure you use a clean bucket and mixing stick. Small pieces of grit will spoil the new screed.
  • On larger floors, divide the area into smaller sections and, when dry, blend in the divisions with a little extra mix.

Illustrations: Ed Roberts

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