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Old 10-09-2008, 07:57 AM   #1
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Backer Board Thickness

I've building a new house for myself. I've done most of it myself and plan on doing the flooring. I've got about 950sqft of tile to lay in bathrooms/kitchen.

My question is this: What is the difference in 1/4" board versus 1/2" backer board? Is it a matter of extra strength or would the 1/2" board just be overkill? My subfloor is 2 X 10 joists and 3/4' T&G Advantech plywood.

Also, is there any less expensive alternatives to hardie Backer?


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Old 10-09-2008, 08:05 AM   #2
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Standard thickness for flooring application is 1/4". Keep in mind that when you install cementitous board onto a floor, and add tile or stone, you are raising the floor height.

1/2" cement board is generally use for wall tile applications.

We are installing 1/2" cement board next week on a floor, in an addition that we built, however, we adjusted the height of that floor's surface, to be even with the adjacent floor heights. You can't do that with normal installed floors. Stick with 1/4".


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Old 10-09-2008, 10:14 AM   #3
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To elaborate, it isn't a strength issue. Backerboard will flex, so the backer is reliant on the subfloor to provide rigidity. 1/4" is fine for floors. Be sure to bed the backerboard in thinset and screw it down, as well as mesh tape and thinset the seams. Definately don't want to skip any of those steps.

Personally, I don't buy the Hardiebacker. I use wonderboard or durarock. They're probably a buck cheaper I'd guess, but they do the same thing.
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Old 10-09-2008, 01:30 PM   #4
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Backerboard has no structural value, so either one is fine. Typically 1/2" for walls and 1/4" for floors, but you can use the 1/2" on floors if you need the extra height, which is only the case in unique situations.

- Bob
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