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Installing DIY Vinyl Rigid Core Flooring over concrete

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 Do I have a treat for you today! We are sharing the “installing DIY Vinyl Rigid Core Flooring Over Cement (concrete)” project today in our basement and you guys, this floor is not only gorgeous and easy to clean, it’s so easy to install! 


How to Install Vinyl Plank Flooring over Concrete 

Adding vinyl plank flooring over concrete floors is easy and a great way to refresh a basement. Not only are the vinyl planks we used waterproof, they are gorgeous!  You would never know that the floor underneath the vinyl planks was concrete. If you have been following along, you know that we have been working on our basement makeover and today is all about vinyl plank floor installation.

You can catch up on our basement remodel project by reading posts:

Gaining Storage basement remodeling project {before}

Basement 2×4 Framing Walls and Closet Project 

Today I am sharing our amazing partnership with Select Surfaces who provide stylish and durable flooring options. I also might add, very affordable too!

Installing DIY vinyl plank flooring in a basement with lally columns

Jessica Bruno and boyfriend Jim basement renovation

One of the biggest things to consider when finishing your basement floor is whether or not the floor can be installed over concrete or cement.

Basement remodel renovation with cement floor, white beams and white lally columns

For those of you wondering, the light blue/gray wall color is called Lullaby by Sherwin Williams. By far, the prettiest blue/gray wall color I have used in a while.

Select Surfaces Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring - Harvest Oak colorVinyl Flooring Installation

The Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring from Select Surfaces easily installs directly on top of the cement and they click together like tongue and groove. Easy peasy!

The Rigid Core Vinyl Floor Features that I find important:

Attached Foam Backer


Click Installation

100% waterproof

Resistant to stains

FloorScore Certified

30 Year residential Warrant, 10 Year Commercial Warranty

How to install vinyl planks on concrete floors

First we started by snapping a chalk line to get a straight line.  Just pick a starting point and go from there. We decided to start at the stairway wall.

Snapping a chalk line to start the diy vinyl flooring over cement project in the basement

Some of you may be saying, “but Jess, isn’t the floor really hard to walk on over cement?”

It’s very comfortable to walk on. The Rigid Core Vinyl items come with a 1 mm attached foam backer that will help smooth minor subfloor imperfections, will act as an extra sound barrier and will cushion the planks, making the vinyl planks more comfortable to walk on.

Click Together Installing Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring over Cement in Basement

Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring Color Options

If a light warm toned brown isn’t your thing? They have a variety of colors and textures here. You can also see their Morning Fog color (gray flooring) that we installed in our split house basement (see flooring here). Yes! We did another full basement renovation and installed this same flooring over concrete at that house as well. 

I almost went with the Harbor Gray color in an effort to create a coastal theme but opted for the warm toned brown instead.

The directions are very self explanatory. We used a piece of the flooring as our spacer against the wall. You will need a small gap between the wall and your floor to allow for expansion.

Click Together Installing Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring over Cement in Basement

We picked Harvest Oak color and ordered directly from Sam’s Club  and there was  minimal shipping cost. The best part, the floor was delivered in 5 days! You also have the option to pick up in the store as well.

Harvest Oak Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring in basement over cement

Here you can see Jim below playing air guitar with the shop vac. I think it was almost 8pm when I snapped this picture and he was on 13 hours of being in my basement and modeling for my social channels! -ha.

Needless to say, he was a little done with me at this point ;).

Basement remodel Jim playing air guitar with a shop vac

Do I need underlayment for vinyl plank flooring on concrete?

We did not use an underlayment under our vinyl plank flooring. The back of the rigid core flooring has a rubber like backing that does provide a cushion. Depending on your flooring type you may or may not need underlayment. We did not use underlayment. 

We finished about 1000 square feet in our basement so the time to lay the floor took a full day plus another 1/2 day but the overall process was so simple. If you are laying a floor in a smaller space, these vinyl planks would take no time to install.

Again, the directions that come with the vinyl flooring are so easy to follow. Basically, the Rigid Core vinyl plank floor floats on top of the cement.

utility knife cutting rigid core vinyl flooring

The Rigid Core vinyl planks cut with a utility knife and snap right into the next plank (like tongue and groove). I feel kind of silly when I keep saying, “they were so easy to install” but they really were. Even my 13 year old helped (see instagram story in our highlights feed).

utility knife cutting Harvest Oak rigid core vinyl flooring

Besides choosing a floor for the basement that could easily be installed over cement, it was important that is was durable, easy to clean and looked like wood.

Which Direction to Install Vinyl Plank Flooring?

Harvest Oak Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring, Sherwin Williams Lullabye paint and white lally columns

We had a similar style vinyl plank flooring in our old house and we absolutely loved it so we decided to go with the same style, texture and feel this time around as well.

You can install the Rigid Core plank flooring in either direction but we opted to run the plank flooring horizontal to mimic the same direction of the ceiling planks. I changed my mind a few times on this but in the end, we decided to keep the flooring and ceiling planks going in the same direction.

Harvest Oak Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring in basement over cement, white decorative columns over lally columns

How to Clean Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring

How do I clean the vinyl flooring planks?

Hot water, a mop and Mr. Clean! As you know, we have lots of kids in and out of our house, two dogs and lots of foot traffic.

Harvest Oak Rigid Core Vinyl Flooring in basement over cement

Be sure to catch all the basement renovation blog posts ( basement post #1 storage  | basement post #2 framing |  Basement Post #3 flooring | Basment Ceiling #4 (this post) | Basement ACCENT WALL #5 )

The plank flooring hides dirt well and also mops up easily. I can’t say enough about how amazing this floor is. Not to mention, it’s under $2 a square foot!

RELATED: See our other basement remodel at the Split House Flip House and why we love this vinyl plank flooring (featuring gray vinyl plank flooring).

Installing DIY Vinyl Rigid Core Flooring Over Cement is such an easy project and it instantly changed the look of our basement once installed.

You can find all of the products that Select Surfaces on their website or at Sam’s Club. See our basement makeover to view the entire floor complete.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Select Surfaces. All opinions and words are 100% my own.

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  1. It looks really nice! Congratulations.
    Stay well.


  3. I love what you did, it looks great! I do have a question regarding laying over cement, did you have to use cement leveler to smooth the floor? Or was your floor already level?

  4. Did this project not require any trim or molding pieces for doorways or anything? I’m interested in purchasing some of this vinyl plank flooring but it looks like Select Surfaces doesn’t manufacture molding kits for their vinyl plank flooring, only for their laminate flooring.