I have a chipboard base in my kitchen (not a solid floor) and want to tile the floor. Should I use Hardiebacker first and then tile onto it?
Tell us more---How thick is this 'chip board'?
Could ir be OSB? Oriented strand board?
Also--what are the floor joist ? How big--how long from foundation to beam?
If the floor itself checks out as okay for tile--then yes---a tile backer 1/4"" set in thinset and nailed or screwed is needed.
I prefer Wonder board or Durrock myself---I don't like to use Hardibacker.
What Mike said.
The first thing you need to do is find out if your floor is suitable for tile. The big concern is deflection (AKA bounce).
If you put down tile on a floor that is too bouncy you risk cracked grout, loose tiles, and a general mess.
As Mike said, knowing the size and span of your joists is the first step, along with finding out exactly how your sub-floor is constructed. If you have a floor vent, pulling the cover off is often a good way to get a peek at your sub-floor.
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