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Tony Lovelace 08-16-2009 06:05 AM

Plywood or Chipboard subfloor for hardwood flooring?
I am rebuilding my house and have got to the stage where the floor joists are about to be laid on the first floor. It is an upside down chalet bungalow with the living space upstairs looking out on the sea. Because of the sloping ceilings I am keen to not have too thick a flooring but the carpenters need a surface to work off when building the roof. The finished floor will be hardwood, probably oak also we will have underfloor heating in the area between the joists. What would the best material to use bearing in mind it will be exposed until the roof is on?
Ha anyone any thoughts on the pros and cons of solid hardwood on top of underfloor heating?

Just Bill 08-16-2009 07:04 AM

It is not called chipboard, it is OSB(oriented strand board), chip board was something from the wayback days and was completey different. I prefer plywood, but OSB is what is generally used since it is less expensive.

Bob Mariani 08-16-2009 07:08 AM

not a good choice. Solid hardwood over radiant heat is problematic at best. Use Advantec as the sub floor for the workers to use as a platform and to provide a quality sub floor. Then use engineered hardwood flooring to work well with the radiant heat.

pinwheel45 08-16-2009 07:25 AM

I agree with Bob on the radiant heat, not a good idea.

Most of the floor I lay will warranty for structural failure if laid over osb or plywood, at least 3/4 thick.

Tony Lovelace 08-16-2009 08:01 AM

Thanks for the comments. This is the first time I have used this site and I am very impressed.

pinwheel45 08-16-2009 08:31 AM

One other thing, I just noticed the deck could potentially be exposed for a while. Be sure to take a moisture reading in the sub floor before installing the hardwood. You can buy a decent enough moisture meter for this reading for around $100. A huge difference in moisture between your flooring & the sub floor will cause your new wood to expand drastically & the floor boards will more than likely cup

NailedIt 08-16-2009 12:01 PM

Advantech is an OSB that is specially treated to be resistant to water. I've installed many sheets of it on waterfront homes. It holds up very well in my experience with no edge- swelling after repeated exposures to coastal rains. There are channels to allow the water to run off in the tongue. There are plywoods with similar characteristics. Don't allow standing water to accumulate on the subfloor, think squeegee or push broom.

I don't know much about underfloor heating other than what I've read here.

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