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Old 06-02-2010, 08:39 AM   #1
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Urgent Kitchen flooring question!!

Hey gang,

So here is the deal. I was told to put down 3/4 in subfloor grade plywood, and that my tile guy would spread the mud over that and lay tile (there were 1/2 plank floors still below in great shape so I left them and put the ply on top screwing into the joists every 6 inches). So I spent a day tearing out old ply floor and laying a new one. Done.

Then I started reading and EVERYONE suggests using cement board between the tile and ply, since plywood expands and contracts an causes tiles to crack......crap.

At the moment the subfloor is level with the hardwood that it meets in the dining room and living room. SO, I did the math and with the cement board, mud, and tile I'm looking at a kitchen floor that is 1/2+ taller than my hardwoods.....double crap.

The only thing I can see is to get a threshold and call it a day. My question is...is it weird to have a kitchen floor that is that much higher???

Shame on me for not doing the research before hand. I would take it up and put 1/2 inch ply with 1/4 cement backer, BUT, the cabinets are already in, so that baby is staying put!


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Old 06-02-2010, 09:32 AM   #2
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You didn't really fasten the ply do the joists did you?


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Old 06-02-2010, 09:44 AM   #3
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No, I was lying....

Again, per the direction of our floorguy. There is time to pull them up...is there a reason to?
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Old 06-02-2010, 09:49 AM   #4
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1/2" plank subfloor? I doubt that very much.

You could have gotten away with 5/8" ply instead of 3/4", but the more plywood the better. You're gonna be about 5/8" higher, that's not a big deal and yes of course a tiled floor is usually higher than hardwood. A bevelled threshold or made as a ramp will cure that.

I suggest you consider using Ditra Membrane instead of cement backer. It'll save you a little height since it's 1/8" installed instead of about 5/16" for 1/4" backers.

BTW, please do not call "thin set" mortar "mud". Mud is a mix of sand and cement placed about 1-2" thick to create a firm base for tiles.

TILE GUY - retired- TROY, MI - Method & Product suitability consulting.

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Old 06-02-2010, 09:57 AM   #5
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Thanks for the great input man. And sorry for the mid misspeak. I work on cars and we always refer to "bondo" as mud or juice, so the term carries for me

I just slapped a tape on the plank and you are right, its 5/8. I will certainly check into Ditra.
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cement board , flooring , subfloor , tile

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