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Old 06-23-2019, 04:28 PM   #16
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


I did more demolition this afternoon with a crowbar. A large chunk of tiled mud bed around the toilet flange came up as you can see from photos. I chiseled around the joist in the photo, and could see daylight below the cement (from the windowed room below it which contains hot water heater.)


As someone mentioned earlier, the joists are notched like the peak of a house, and will have to be sistered. They stapled tar paper to the joists like a hammock for a cement form. From what I could see through the crack the cement between the joists is about 1 1/2" thick, not 4" as I feared, and will have to be broken up with an electric jackhammer. I feel confident enough to take this on.


Looks like I'll have to cut the iron pipe toilet drain and replace it at the main stack with PVC and a flexible coupling to bring height down to level of new floor.
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1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-newest-bathroom-004.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-newest-bathroom-001.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-newest-bathroom-002.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-newest-bathroom-003.jpg  

Last edited by Thomas Kleaton; 06-23-2019 at 04:31 PM.
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Old 06-24-2019, 08:19 AM   #17
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


Wait, so you have no subfloor?

Are you trying to save the tub?
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Old 06-24-2019, 05:50 PM   #18
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


Yes, I am planning to use the original tub, maybe even having it reglazed. There is a subfloor of 3/4" oak boards under the tub itself, supporting the tub. The concrete comes up only to the edge of the tub. I did some more demolition today, with a rotary hammer, removing the tile and mortar surrounding the tub. I found out that if I chisel lines through the material close to a stud with the rotary hammer I can break it out in large chunks with a crowbar. I then go in with a flat prybar and remove the remaining mesh and nails.


The concrete between the floor joists is 3" thick. I tried the rotary hammer out on the floor with a pointed bit, and it cracks the concrete nicely. I thought it was staples holding tar paper to the joists yesterday, but it was hog wire laid across the joists. It's still a big job, but I can break up the concrete and bring it out in chunks.
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Old 06-25-2019, 08:25 AM   #19
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


If you have no subfloor, I would definitely put one in before proceeding.
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Old 06-25-2019, 08:59 AM   #20
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


I removed a small section of floor concrete yesterday, and there is a subfloor of 3/4" oak boards under the concrete, sandwiched between two sets of joists, if that makes sense. There is no danger of falling through. I will be doing more demolition today, and will take more photos.
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Old 06-25-2019, 05:04 PM   #21
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


I removed all of the tile from the walls surrounding the tub today, and removed the tub protection to take these photos of tub. I am sure it is original. I haven't dug into the floor tile by the tub yet.


The other photos are where I removed a section of the concrete under the tile mud bed to show what is beneath it.
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1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-no-tile-001.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-no-tile-002.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-no-tile-011.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-no-tile-012.jpg   1963 Tile Floor Dilemma-no-tile-010.jpg  

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Old 06-26-2019, 09:41 AM   #22
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


If those boards are not on top of the joists, they're not a subfloor. They could just be for ensuring the concrete didn't leak through? I'd put down a proper subfloor on top of the joists before putting down your tile.
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Old 06-26-2019, 07:05 PM   #23
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


Yes, I plan on installing a 3/4" plywood subfloor on top of the joists, after the concrete is removed, topped by 1/4 or 1/2" cement board for tiling.
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Old 06-27-2019, 08:16 AM   #24
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma




If you had 3" of mortar plus tile above the joists, though, is that gonna create a transition issue with any adjacent floor, like to the hallway outside the bathroom?
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Old 06-27-2019, 07:38 PM   #25
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


Good question. I will have to lay a level on the existing bathroom tile, which is even with the adjacent hallway, and see how much space there is between the bottom of the level and the top of the exposed joist.
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Old 06-28-2019, 08:08 AM   #26
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


If you use one of those marble bathroom transition strips you may be able to get away with some slight transition difference, depending how much reveal you're OK with on the strip.

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Old 07-08-2019, 08:50 PM   #27
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


I removed all of the floor tile and about 2" of tile bed beneath it last Saturday, using the rotary hammer to bust it up in large chunks. After that, I tried using the rotary hammer to bust up some of the concrete (about 3 inches thick) poured between the floor joists. Concrete is reinforced with hog wire, and the rotary hammer is not cutting it. Will it hurt the floor to try busting the concrete with a 10-lb sledge hammer and taking it out in smaller pieces?
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Old 07-09-2019, 09:16 AM   #28
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


If the floor underneath is flexible (wood), I don't see a problem if you're careful, i.e. don't Hulk Smash the sledge.
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Old 07-25-2019, 06:20 AM   #29
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


I cracked all of the concrete into larger pieces with a sledge hammer last weekend, and removed it. One thing I didn't know is that sometimes concrete like this contained asbestos. Is there any way to have some of the rubble tested?
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Old 07-25-2019, 06:39 AM   #30
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Re: 1963 Tile Floor Dilemma


People that have problem with asbestos have worked in a dust area for years and years. Yes a lab can test it.
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