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Old 10-24-2011, 08:16 AM   #1
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Help! Tiling Bathroom Floor


Howdy All!

Looking for some guru sage advice :-)


You can follow my lovely house here: My new house and the progress I make.


However, I'm working on the hall bathroom:

(and realized I took super crappy "before" floor shots...)





I removed the vanity that was in there... And in the process learned the hot water valve was corroded open... Besides one incident where I thought the hot water was completely turned off when it wasn't flooding the bathroom a little bit I got the valve replaced no problem...

Then I pulled the toilet, then I pulled up half the floor (The easy/damaged half)

Now I have this: (looks better in these photos than it did... I sprayed it with bleach last night to ensure any mold was dead...)








So now I'm trying to figure out how to proceed...

I was recommended to let the plywood dry, throw 1/2" hardibacker down (liquid nailing it over the joists and screwing it down) and tile on top of that.

After further research even if I do the 1/2" hardibacker I'm going to be using thinset under it...



My floor is 1/2" plywood over 9" beams that can support ceramic tile according to the johnbridge.com calculator.

There's some warping of the plywood by the toilet...

I'm considering replacing that plywood instead of just going over it... But I was thinking of cutting out the damged section (leaving the 4" section next to the wall) and then replacing what I pull with 3/4" plywood and adding 1/4" everywehre I don't replace...

My goal is to have the tile end up nearly level with the hardwood floor elsewhere in the house... That floor is 3/4" hardwood over 1/2" plywood.



After putting my plan above in words I don't like what that'd do to the seems... So maybe replace the damaged 1/2" with new 1/2" and then lay 1/4" over the whole floor, with 1/4" hardibacker or ditra and then tile on top of that?

suggestions more than welcome... They're being looked for :-)


(also... is there a way to thumbnail images easier? or am I just using a bad host (photobucket).... I guess I could be using a good host badly....)

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Old 10-24-2011, 08:32 AM   #2
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Help! Tiling Bathroom Floor


I'm not even going to read all of that.......

I can tell you that the plywood that is there now is not the correct plywood to be using for a tile floor installation so it should go away.

I can also tell you that whoever told you to install Hardi with Liquid Nails is out of their mind, that IS NOT the way to install Hardibacker.

You also CAN NOT use any 1/4" plywood anywhere in a tile installation.

You could use some more research before you proceed, I can see you are destined for failure on more than one level the way you are headed.

Just four easy payments of $39.95 and we can keep you on track. Small additional charge for handling, shipping, and minipulating.

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Old 10-24-2011, 08:34 AM   #3
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...and of course that partical board must also be removed totally.
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Old 10-24-2011, 08:41 AM   #4
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Bud, Thanks for the reply...


All the particle is going away for sure...


Would either of these options work well?

Replace damaged 1/2" with new 1/2", thinset, 1/2" hardi, thinset, tile

Replace 1/2" with new 1/2", add an additional layer of 1/2" (offsetting all the seams), thinset, ditra, thinset, tile


If those are less than ideal can you help me improve them?

-DH
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Old 10-24-2011, 12:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Replace 1/2" with new 1/2", add an additional layer of 1/2" (offsetting all the seams), thinset, ditra, thinset, tile
That plan would work fine.
The new plywood should be "underlayment grade" plywood. Meaning (depending on where you are) B-C plywood or better. It should also be "exterior plywood - Exposure 1". Nothing thinner than 3/8", 1/4" won't due.

Offsetting the lower seams by twenty-five percent will work. The underlayment does not get any adhesive, only mechanical fasteners. Try to miss the joists also.

Modified thinset to install the DITRA, unmodified thinset to install the tile.
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Old 10-24-2011, 12:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
That plan would work fine.
The new plywood should be "underlayment grade" plywood. Meaning (depending on where you are) B-C plywood or better. It should also be "exterior plywood - Exposure 1". Nothing thinner than 3/8", 1/4" won't due.

Offsetting the lower seams by twenty-five percent will work. The underlayment does not get any adhesive, only mechanical fasteners. Try to miss the joists also.

Modified thinset to install the DITRA, unmodified thinset to install the tile.


Thanks Bud... off to get supplies now... Gotta patch the hole in the floor :-)

(pictures later)

-DH
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Old 10-24-2011, 05:16 PM   #7
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Alright... so I made a hole...




Then I installed some new plywood. Life was good. Sure seems springy and full of give. Must be that crappy new wood instead of the nice 1960s plywood.

Hmm that would seem odd to be that different in the spring. Oh. Right. I ran the grain with the beams.


Good thing it was installed with screws.. Luckily the toilet was in a position that I could flip the previous piece and cut it to length and it still fit.




however, now I have one scrap left. And it's not enough to finish the hole. Back to the store for more supplies.
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Old 10-24-2011, 07:00 PM   #8
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I'm almost afraid to ask but here goes.
How thick is that plywood?
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Old 10-24-2011, 08:52 PM   #9
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That's the 1/2" I was talking about before :-) Pretty much no perceptible movement when I orient it the right direction. With the second layer screwed to the top of it, it feels like a whole new floor... Feels more stable than the 1/2" with 5/8ish particle board on top ever did.
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Old 10-24-2011, 10:26 PM   #10
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No where in this country do building codes allow for using 1/2" plywood that I know of as a subfloor sheathing material. Five-eights is the minimum and even that is questionable in a lot of cases.
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Old 10-25-2011, 07:17 AM   #11
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Yeah, but when did the building codes say that? :-) I'm betting it was after this house was built.


I'm helping a friend move today so I probably won't make much progress.


As long as I'm posting here...


When working with DITRA... Do you have to lay it and then tile right away? Or can you lay the mat down and then come back a few days later to install the tile?
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Old 10-25-2011, 08:59 AM   #12
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Quote:
When working with DITRA... Do you have to lay it and then tile right away? Or can you lay the mat down and then come back a few days later to install the tile?
You can wait.
That's funny - usually that question is asked the other way around: "How fast can I start my tile after I install DITRA?" "I need to be done with the tile installation before my Pop Tart pops out of my toaster." "I'm in a hurry, I can't wait, I'm special."

Glad to see someone taking it slow for a change.

Probably not a great idea to have a lot of foot traffic on the raw DITRA tho.
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Old 10-25-2011, 05:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
You can wait.

Glad to see someone taking it slow for a change.

Probably not a great idea to have a lot of foot traffic on the raw DITRA tho.


Yeah I'm in no hurry. I much prefer to have things done right and last me a long long time than redo them every few years.

I've got an actual job as well... I don't mind doing all the work on my off days... But I don't want to have to rush through things either. I've laid down some plastic to cover the plywood so we can keep using the bathtub, and I'll probably lay the ditra next weekend...


Before I lay the tile, I want some of the electrical redone, so I'm going to be removing some sheetrock and moving things around.... Figure I might as well do that BEFORE I put in a new floor.
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Old 10-26-2011, 06:12 PM   #14
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DITRA orientation question...

So while I'm thinking about it..


I'm tiling a rectangle... Lets say it's shaped like this:

(D is the door but it opens in not out)

Code:
 _______
|       |
|       |
|_______|
       D
So I can do two long strips from left to right (the DITRA will cover approximately 2/3 of hte room that way) and then cut a piece lengthwise (probably wasting a fair amount) to have two long pieces cover the room.


Otherwise I can run it top to bottom (of that example) resulting in 3 maybe 4 shorter pieces that will cover the area.


Is one method better than the other? Or if it's installed correctly is it irrelevant?
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Old 10-26-2011, 07:29 PM   #15
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The DITRA doesn't care how you orient it. DITRA is 39-1/2" (one meter) wide so whatever works with that dimension.

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