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jwindhall 09-04-2007 03:37 PM

Old House, Old floor, old subfloor... Qucik question(s)
I own a duplex and upon my latest tenants leaveing, I've taken the opportunity to make a few improvements on the living quarters. The bathroom is in need of some help, the floor mainly. Long story short, the peel and stick vinyl flooring is crap. So, I've ripped up the "tiles", taken of the baseboard, and removed the toilet. Now, here's where it gets a little funky. Under the tile, someone laid 1/8 inch plywood (huh?) over the old 2 inch Tonge and groove oak hardwoods (which are quite nice in the rest of the house). I assume the 2 inch hardwoods sit on top of some other ~4inch planks which then in turn sit on the floor joists, few, you got that?

So, obviously the 1/8 plywood is crap and my next step is to rip that out. My question is, can a lay some Durock on top of the old tonge and groove hardwoods with thinset and then lay ceramic tiles on top of that or will there still be too much flex? I'm sure it won't come as any surprise that I'm new to this but I figured the rental Unit was a better place to experiment before tackling the owners unit.

Big Bob 09-04-2007 06:34 PM

Well, Im not a fan of c-tile off grade period.:no:

Yes, it can work for a while if your floor system is supported well.
Does the floor vibrate a little when someone walks fast?:yes:

Lots of things you can do to slow down the cracked grout and other problems you will one day have. Read some of the many post on this site.:wink:

JazMan 09-04-2007 08:19 PM

Hi Hall,

I guess you're saying that you have 2 1/4" wide hardwood and perhaps 1x4" or 6" as the subfloor over the joists? Assuming the joists are not over spanned, we will at this time assume your joists are sturdi enough for tile. You should first remove the hardwood floor as it is too unstable to attach a tile backer board to. This will also save you 3/4" in height. Once the hardwood is gone, you will install a plywood underlayment of 1/2" or thicker. Thicker is always better. Then you are ready for the backer board and then tiles.

Just to be sure, can you measure the size of the joists, their spacing and the unsupported span. Check the subfloor and let us know.


jwindhall 09-04-2007 08:38 PM

The floor joists are spaced just fine... Though getting the old 2 1/4 hardwoods out might just be more of a task that I'm willing to take on right now. At this point, I'm leaning more towards something a little more forgiving like vinyl tiles or sheet vinyl. I was moving the cast iron radiator around and the flow seemed a bit too bouncy maybe. It would be a shame to go through all the work and then have it fail.

JazMan 09-04-2007 08:50 PM

OK, it's your floor, do whatever you want. You still can't go directly over the hardwood though.


jwindhall 09-04-2007 08:53 PM

Ya know, on second thought, your right Jazz. I just went down and took another peak. There is some water damage done to the 2 1/4 inch hardwood near the bath tub. I'm going to at least do it right and get that crap outta there and at the very least put down a good solid underlayment. Maybe i'll get the gumption to go with ceramic tiles.

JazMan 09-04-2007 09:00 PM

Of course I'm right! :thumbup: You will be too when you decide to do the job right, and do it once! Vinyl and wood does NOT belong in any bathroom.


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