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Old 02-22-2013, 08:02 AM   #1
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


I'm sure this topic has been beaten to death but...

Previous homeowner installed 3/4" x 2 1/4" oak hardwood parallel to joists in a my 12'x22' living room. I've done some remodeling and now am installing 3/4" x 5" Cumuru in my kitchen/dining room (16" x 22") on the opposite side of the house. The oak and the cumuru will meet in two places.

My subfloor is 3/4" tounge in groove plywood on 2"x10" floor joists that are 16" OC. Is it okay to run my new floor parallel to the joists like the previous owner did or do I need to run it perpendicular to the joists? If parallel do I need to add blocking in the basement or another layer of plywood first?

Looking for advice. House was built in Massachusetts in 1994.


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Old 02-22-2013, 08:27 AM   #2
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


Ad how did the other flooring hold up?
Gaps, squecks?

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Old 02-22-2013, 08:31 AM   #3
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


The other floor is holding up well. No squeeks or cracks. Has 15lb felt under it. Not sure how long it has been installed, I'd guess less than 3 years since there is leftover wood in the basement and I moved in a year ago.

I've removed the old carpet and linoleum from the dining/kitchen area and floor is solid. Squeeks in a few places and I will screw down the floor in those places.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:36 AM   #4
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


We installed our hardwood flooring parallel to the joists. We had 5/8" subfloor and we added 1/2" plywood to avoid any issues.

I think the flooring company wanted a minimum 3/4" subfloor before they would install parallel but don't quote me on that.
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:13 AM   #5
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


the only problem with running parallel with the joists is if there are any dips or humps between the joists the flooring will follow. perpendicular to the joists it would span them better and wouldn't be as noticeable. but if your floor is nice and flat it shouldn't make any difference.
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Old 02-22-2013, 04:40 PM   #6
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


I installed the plywood subfloor parallel to the joists (for a shed) and it sagged between the joists as I walked on it. Not good. You see, this plywood had 3 plies going the long way and 2 plies going the short way and that made all the difference in terms of rigidity of the plywood sheets.
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Old 02-23-2013, 06:26 AM   #7
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


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I installed the plywood subfloor parallel to the joists (for a shed) and it sagged between the joists as I walked on it. Not good. You see, this plywood had 3 plies going the long way and 2 plies going the short way and that made all the difference in terms of rigidity of the plywood sheets.
Never want to install plywood perallel to joists...eek
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Old 03-03-2013, 01:43 AM   #8
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


I've laid hardwood parallel to subfloor boards (not t&g) in a long hallway where the other direction would have looked awful. We sanded the hell out of the subfloor to get it smooth and renailed portions of it. 40 year old house so it was pretty stable. It went fine and still looks good about 8 years later. If done intelligently, it'll be fine.
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:19 AM   #9
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Laying Flooring parallel to joists


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the only problem with running parallel with the joists is if there are any dips or humps between the joists the flooring will follow. perpendicular to the joists it would span them better and wouldn't be as noticeable. but if your floor is nice and flat it shouldn't make any difference.
and guarantees over time? construction wise itis always better to do it perpendicular to the joists

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