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-   -   To Ditra or not? (http://www.diychatroom.com/f5/ditra-not-16973/)

JamesEric 02-12-2008 04:47 AM

To Ditra or not?
 
The house is 108 years old. The kitchen floor joist are oak true 2"x12" spaced at 18" on center. The subfloor is also oak 3/4"x8" installed at a 45 degree angle. The finished floor is 3/4" oak. The joist span is 11-1/2 feet. So far I have installed 5/16" concrete board with 1/4" leveling shims and screws every 8". My plan is to install 18"x18" 1/2" thick travertine stone tile. I'd like to skip the Ditra to reduce the finished floor height. If I use the Ditra the difference in floor height between the kitchen and the other rooms will be almost 2". I already have the Ditra. Would skipping the Ditra cause any problems?

JazMan 02-12-2008 11:44 AM

James or Eric,

What you're doing is completely wrong and grossly inadequate. :no: Where did you get advice to do what you did?

Jaz

JamesEric 02-12-2008 01:34 PM

Okay. What should I do? I will wait for your reply before I do anything else. What should do from here?

JazMan 02-12-2008 02:03 PM

You should have removed the top hardwood flooring. Then you should have installed a plywood underlayment. Then your Durock tile backer board or Ditra.

Kinda late now. Either rip all that up and send it to a landfill, or maybe take a chance and add a layer of 3/8" ply with Ditra over? Remember though that your 8" diagonal sub is bound to move if not fastened well, affecting everything over it.

The floor had better be flat too. And you'll require special thinset for the stone tile.

Jaz

Bud Cline 02-12-2008 02:35 PM

Too many precariously placed layers on a structure that old spells trouble for a ceramic tile installation and a travertine install would be out of the question in my estimation.

The backerboard needs to be taken out, the top layer of hardwood flooring removed, the subfloor re-attached to the joists, then start to rebuild with plywood and tile backer.

The fact that the structural members are full dimension are a slight "plus" but the 18" joist spacing may rob that "plus".:(

Jaz's suggestion would probably work if it wasn't for it having so darned many layers offering potential voids to flex.:)

JamesEric 02-12-2008 04:12 PM

Thanks for the help. It is not too late. I can still make it right but I'll need more details. This is not a rush project and I have the time to correct the problems.

1. What is the tool of choice for removing the hardwood flooring? My first thought is a circular saw set for shallow cutting.
2. Are you telling me to add srcrews to the sub-floor and if so what is the preferred spacing?

Thanks again for saving the day.

James

Bud Cline 02-12-2008 07:10 PM

I'm afraid the way to remove the flooring is "any way you can". I know that's not scientific but demolition rarely is. I would use at least two screws per board crossing every joist. And check that all boards are secured to the joists.:)

jerryh3 02-12-2008 08:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JamesEric (Post 97377)
Thanks for the help. It is not too late. I can still make it right but I'll need more details. This is not a rush project and I have the time to correct the problems.

1. What is the tool of choice for removing the hardwood flooring? My first thought is a circular saw set for shallow cutting.
2. Are you telling me to add srcrews to the sub-floor and if so what is the preferred spacing?

Thanks again for saving the day.

James

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...4788_200344788
Just find the joists and pry away.

JamesEric 02-13-2008 03:59 AM

I always felt that something was not right but I didn't know how to fix it. My new plan is to remove the hardwood everywhere except under the base cabinets (cabinet have not been installed yet). I'll add 2 deck screws to each sub-floor board wherever it crosses a joist. The house has shifted so getting it level is not an option but I will make it flat. I have a 6 feet level and a laser to double check the final substrate. If I've missed anything, please let me know. I'm going to take the day off and "get 'r done." At first light I'm heading to Lowes to get a carbide tip circular saw blade and deck screws. I l already have enough tools for the demo. Once again, I appreciate all of the expert advice.

James

BleachCola 02-13-2008 06:02 AM

alot of people wish they had beautiful hardwood floors, why not refinish them ?

JamesEric 02-13-2008 06:25 AM

The kitchen is the only room in the house that does not have hardwood worth finishing. I'm going to finish the other rooms but the kitchen floor is shot.

mgarfield 02-13-2008 03:45 PM

I recently removed hardwoods from an entire house due to water/moisture damage. (As Bud Cline pointed out in a post I once replied too, never install tile over hardwood, I saw why last week!)

We used roof rippers, they look like a flat shovel with teeth on the end. Took 2 guys about an hour for the whole first floor. Went back later to remove or hammer down all the left over nails.

JamesEric 02-13-2008 03:58 PM

I know what you mean. That is what I used to remove the carpet and tile they had in the kitchen when we purchased the house.

This is latest update on the project:
1. I have removed the concrete board
2. I cut a 24"x36" hole in the hardwood so that I could inspect the sub-floor. The sub-floor is cupped. The boards range in width from 8"-10" wide. Because they are cupped the floor has waves.

How should I proceed from here?

Thanks,

James

JazMan 02-13-2008 04:34 PM

YIKES! James, you've got more work ahead of you!

This means you have too much moisture, it's probably coming from underneath? Either a damp basement or wet crawl or? Probably need to look at the landscape around and soil condition under the house if on a crawl. Install a moisture barrier on the ground if there is no basement, insulation under the subfloor etc?.

You should probably do it right while you're in the mood and rip all that lumber out of there. Then you can start from scratch with new plywood subfloor.:thumbsup:

Jaz

JamesEric 02-13-2008 05:37 PM

I already knew that was coming. I don't think I have a moisture problem. The meter shows things to be nice and dry. The kitchen is over a conditioned basement but it was not always that way. The boards have had over 100 years to warp. This week I can remove all of the lumber down to the joist and replace it with plywood. It is my understanding that only the bottom layer should be screwd to the joist and the top layer should be screwed to the bottom layer and not through to the joist. I also read that I should 1/4" between plywood sheets for expansion. If that is wrong, please tell me now. If there are any other tips please let me know because I may start as early as sunrise in the morning.

Thanks,

James


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