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Radiant & wood floors (chicken before the egg???)

We’re putting Brazilian Cherry (very hard dense wood) down in our house. But is it safe to finish the floors (polyurethane) if we’ll be putting Joist Trak radiant floors in a few months from now. Or should we wait to finish the floors until after the radiant is in. Floor folks are afraid the floor might buckle/shrink with the heat.
· Very cold and dry environment (Colorado Mt.)
· Moderately insulated 1 story rambler home w/crawlspace
· Electric baseboards now

Thanks much


  • Paul Pollets
    Paul Pollets Member Posts: 3,656

    The floors should be installed AFTER the RFH is installed and working. The wood will need to acclimate to 5% or less moisture content, before installing. See the Radiant Flooring guide at The RPA website.

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  • Steve Ebels_3
    Steve Ebels_3 Member Posts: 1,291
    Ditto + additions

    The RFH MUST be installed and running before the wood is installed. After the heat is on line get the wood in the house and out of the boxes, spread it out and let it acclimate to the existing conditions inside. It's also very important also to pay attention to the underfloor insulation and ventilation of the crawlspace. When your start heating the floor you can get some nasty condensation problems in the crawl due to temperature differential on the bottom side of the floor. The insulation under the floor has to be very good or else consider heating the crawl to eliminate condensation issues. You don't want to go there! I don't know the condition of your crawlspace but if it were me and the crawlspace was an open dirt floor I would take some steps to prevent moisture problems by whatever means necessary.
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