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first-timer 06-20-2007 02:15 PM

Bath room remodel subfloor removal
The plumber is coming to remove the old tub - once it is out, I need to get a new sub-floor in the room before he comes back to install the new tub. I need to remove the old tile and sub-floor. I am looking for any advise in what to expect as I take on this project. It is a small bathroom. Standing room, not including the tub area is less than 20 square feet. Also, I will be tiling the floor again once the tub is back in place, so does the preparation for the tile floor go under the tub as well or just butt up to the tub once it is in place? Thanks. Also any suggestions for a step by step book on this process?

johnny331 06-20-2007 04:25 PM

You should be able to knock the tile out by prying it up with a screwdriver or prybar with a hammer. Then set your circular saw to the correct depth down to the joists, and start cutting small boxes, maybe 3x3 in area, and pry them out. Just be careful where you're standing/cutting so you don't end up in the basement.

WNYcarpenter 06-20-2007 06:12 PM

The plywood substrate will go under the tub. Sounds like it's already there. If you are asking about the fiber-cement tile backer, that is installed after the tub has been set....(make sure you glue it well with subfloor adhesive) then the tile is grouted to the tub. There's probably some debate on the correct fastener to use when nailing backer board. We use roofing nails about every 8" throughout. You're also going to want to tape the seems with a mesh tape and thinset.

Removing the tile is another story:whistling2:

first-timer 06-20-2007 06:54 PM

Thanks to both of you. That was what I was asking Nnycarpenter. I wasn't sure if the tile under-layment could or should be put under the tub as well since tub was going to be out. Right now I am not sure what everything looks like under the tub and mosaic tile. It is an older house and there is a leak somewhere - that is how this project started. (That and the pepto-bismol pink and black tile all over the entire room.) Currently planning on the tub, tile and subfloor coming out and starting fresh with a nice smooth surface. The plumber is scheduled for next week to pull the tub. Once that is out I need to get the sub flooring out and back in before he will put the new tub in. I already have the walls and ceiling gutted to the studs. So if anyone else has any words of wisdom, they will be greatly appreciated.

AtlanticWBConst. 06-20-2007 07:09 PM

Installation instructions for 5/16" Durock underlayment (from the USG website):

"On floors, laminate and fasten the cement board panels to a minimum 5/8-inch-thick, exterior-grade plywood subfloor. Use adhesive or mortar to laminate the cement board to the subfloor. Again, be sure to use corrosion-resistant screws or nails. Space the fasteners 8 inches o.c. in both directions. If 5/16-inch cement board panels are being used, fasten the boards with -by-7/8-inch staples spaced 4 inches o.c." -

WNYcarpenter 06-20-2007 07:43 PM

I'm not sure what all is involed with your floor. Normally when someone mentions subfloor I instinctively think the plywood attatched to the framing. Typically, you have framing, 3/4" plywood subfloor, then 1/2" tile backer. Are you removing the floor down to the bare framing?

NateHanson 06-20-2007 09:08 PM

If it's an old house, you're probably dealing with plank subflooring. Sometimes there are two courses of subfloor. I don't think you'll want to automatically remove all of this. You first should determine whether parts are rotted.

Can you get at the bottom of the floor (from the basement, perhaps)?

Since you say mosaic tile floor, I also wonder if you might be dealing with a thick mortar bed floor. You might have an inch of concrete under that mosaic tile. If that's the case, it'll just be a bit more painful to get the flooring out. I think those were poured on tar paper, so separating it from the floor should be easier.

first-timer 06-21-2007 05:50 AM

It is an older house but the plumbers and I agree that it was probably a replacement floor put in at some point. I have the walls gutted to the studs so far, but it is still too hard to see what I am dealing with as far as the floor until that tub comes out. The walls were mudded and it was quite a mess to remove. I am hopeful that if the floors were also mudded, the person who did the replacement floor already had to deal with that thick cement bed. If I can salvage the plywood that is against the joists, that would be good for me, but at this point until I get in there and actually see, I am expecting it will need to be removed to the joists. The bathroom is an upstairs bathroom so access would have to be through the living room ceiling - we are trying to keep that destruction to a minimum, although there is a patch that will need replaced because of the undetermined leakage problem. The plumber suggested most likely at the drain as he has worked on many houses with the same symptoms in this neighborhood.

ACobra289 06-21-2007 12:03 PM

I am by no means a pro, so take this advice for what it's worth. I did this same project about a year ago, and got advice from a very helpful tile forum on the internet. The key point they stressed to me was make the subfloor as strong as possible. I was able to remove my old flooring down to 1/2" plywood. I then glued and screwed 3/4" plywood down. (I'm sorry, I can't remember the grade of plywood they recommended. BC maybe?) If you end up with 2 layers of plywood, be sure the seems from the top plywood do not line up with any of the seems on the bottom layer of plywood. After the plywood, I used thinset and screws to put down a layer of 1/4" hardi board. Then I was ready for the tile.

Use as much plywood as possible in the subfloor with 1/4" hardi (or backer) board on top of that. Plywood adds strength to the floor where hardi does not. Not sure what type of tile you are putting back in, but if it's a natural stone, then the subfloor needs to be even stronger.

Good luck with your project.

KUIPORNG 06-21-2007 02:11 PM

I did my bathroom/laundry room with ditel (not sure if spell right)... rather than other type of cement board.... it is great... and you don't need screws/nails..etc... and waterproofing etc... a bit more expensive I believe though... but the result is great...

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