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Old 05-02-2013, 04:00 PM   #1
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


I am building a new laundry room on the second floor of our 1920's house. The floor is currently carpet over pine planks (no subfloor). The planks are in bad shape, and I want to stabilize the floor as part of the reno. When all is said and done, I'll want tile in the laundry room, and carpet in the rest of the second floor.

I have two options for fixing the floors before framing the new walls and laying new carpet / tile, and I need help deciding which is best:

1) Tear up all of the existing (3/4" thick) floorboards, replace with two layers of 1/2" plywood. In tiled areas, I will use Schluter Ditra over the plywood.

Advantages:
- The height change is minimal, so I won't break code on the stairs
- The result will be very sturdy

Disadvantages:
- No easy way to phase in the demolition at room / hallway boundaries - this is important, as I need to maintain access to the bedrooms on the second floor (where we sleep) as much as possible.
- Will be difficult to repair the floor where it dips under existing partition walls
- More likely to crack the plaster ceiling on the first floor

2) Add either one layer of 1/2" plywood, or one layer of 3/4" T&G plywood to the top of the existing floor boards.

Advantages:
- easier

Disadvantages:
- may not be as sturdy a floor (due to the crappy boards below, and the thinner layer of plywood)
- The extra ~3/4" height will screw up the uniformity of the stairs to the 3rd floor and to the 1st floor

Thoughts? Recommendations?
I've attached a photo of the existing floor for reference:
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?-img_20130501_213103.jpg  

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Old 05-02-2013, 06:15 PM   #2
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


For carpet 1/2" plywood over the plank would be fine, for tile, let the tile guys chime in.

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Old 05-02-2013, 06:39 PM   #3
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


Maybe a hybrid then? Tear up the laundry room floor and add 1" of ply for tile. In the hall and bedrooms just add 1/2" of ply to the existing boards for carpet (doing each room as I go).

Any suggestions on what to do about the stairs? Does itake sense to shim the top 3 steps ~1/4"? Under the new carpet? If so, how?
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Old 05-02-2013, 07:23 PM   #4
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


If it was me, I would put ply over the plank for the tile. But I know the tile guys will say that is wrong. Will the job be inspected? If not, I would not worry about the slight difference in steps.
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Old 05-02-2013, 08:53 PM   #5
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


Your best option is step one. Are those planks T&G and what's your joists size and Span?
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:00 PM   #6
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


The old planks are/were T&G, but many of the grooves are split, and the boards move a fair bit. The Joist spacing is 16".
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:22 PM   #7
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


Quote:
Originally Posted by nuclearnerd View Post
The old planks are/were T&G, but many of the grooves are split, and the boards move a fair bit. The Joist spacing is 16".
Then remove the planks and install your double 1/2" both perpendicular from joists and offset seams on 2nd layer at least 12" apart. What kind of ply are you using for second layer?
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:31 PM   #8
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


Quote:
Originally Posted by nuclearnerd View Post
Maybe a hybrid then? Tear up the laundry room floor and add 1" of ply for tile. In the hall and bedrooms just add 1/2" of ply to the existing boards for carpet (doing each room as I go).
Like I said, there is no reason to take up the planks that will be under the carpet. Just make sure that they are fastened good before covering with the plywood.
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Old 05-04-2013, 06:28 PM   #9
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


I agree with the others. Just screw down the existing pine planks really well and then lay plywood over it. I suggest gluing and screwing the new plywood layer. Hope this helps.
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Old 05-04-2013, 07:05 PM   #10
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tear up or plywood over old pine planks?


I would not glue the new layer of plywood.

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