Slabs instead of concrete slab in basement?

17 Jun 2014
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United Kingdom
Hi all,
I have a basement that I want to use for storage. I’ve put down sub base and sand and visqueen DPM. Plan was to pour concrete slab but no concrete companies round here will pump 1m3 as they all have 2-4m3 minimum orders. I don’t have anywhere to mix up that much concrete myself so wondered if I could just lay paving slabs (the 50mm council slabs) on the DPM and then cover with rubber matting? I just want it to be dry and reasonably clean so I can store stuff down there without getting damp.
Would this work?
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It'd work for the floor, but much of the moisture in a cellar comes from the walls. The only reliable way to get a fully habitable basement is a Type C drained cavity system - as this is quite expensive you are probably best to store things in airtight boxes (for example, really useful boxes).
Maybe put down a thin insulation layer under the slabs. 25mm of EPS (polystyrene) to protect the membrane from damage. In case in the future yourself or someone else wants to hoik up the slabs and pour the concrete.

Also bear in mind the weight of those slabs, by the time you've carried them down there you may just as well have carried bags of cement and ballast.
Thanks both, the walls aren't damp at all and there is only damp on the floor as it was just dirt. Hopefully by doing this it should be fine. Just thinking, as its inside, can I lay the slabs as-is on the DPM over the sand, do they need to be bedded in concrete? What's the benefit of doing so?
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It wasn't uncommon for cellars and indeed ground floors to be floored with stone slabs before concrete took over. I wouldn't bother with bedding them on concrete if your base is good.
When you say about minimum quantities and pumping, do you still have a "coal hole"?
and did you include barrow mix?
It might be a lot less hassle to pay for more concrete than you need compared to buying, shifting and laying slabs?

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