Moisture meters should never be used to make the final determination as to whether or not a concrete slab is dry enough for a flooring installation. Here’s why:
No moisture meter of any type can give consistently accurate moisture readings across the different mixes and densities of concrete. Other components (metal reinforcing bar, aggregate size and amount, etc.) can also cause false indications of moisture, especially with non-pin meters. Pin-type ‘moisture’ meters are also not practical for moisture measurement because variable chemical and physical characteristics in concrete can cause false readings due to changes in electrical resistance that have nothing to do with moisture.
Even if the so-called ‘concrete moisture meters’ were sufficiently accurate, they only measure moisture (not relative humidity) in a very small area near the surface of the concrete slab. This type of surface ‘moisture’ testing says nothing about the conditions inside the slab. Once a floor covering is placed on a concrete slab, the relative humidity (RH) within the slab will equilibrate throughout the thickness of the slab. A slab that may have been “dry” (low RH) at the surface (without a floor covering) will see a higher RH (migrated from within the concrete) at the surface when the floor covering has been installed.
Rapid RH® system gives a relative humidity reading from within the slab for a much more accurate picture of what the final relative humidity reading will be under an installed floor covering or coating.