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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    1

    Question Bathroom floor layers

    Hi, I have a 1925 bungalow, and I gutted my bathroom, and pulled out some decimated tongue and groove flooring which was under tar paper which was under 3 layers of linoleum. I'm left with some 8" wide boards (5/8" thick) that are on a 45 degree angle across the joists. (The floor joists are 16" on center). These boards are under the flooring and walls of the entire first floor. These 8" boards are 3/4" below the fir flooring of the hallway.

    I want to install tile, so my question is about underlayment. Do I need plywood or can these boards serve that purpose? If I need to put plywood on top, how thick? Cement board--how thick?

    Also, I am putting in a clawfoot tub. Should I put the underlayment down first, drill holes for plumbing later, or make holes before putting down the underlayment?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The Great White North
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    4,045

    Default Re: Bathroom floor layers

    Ditto jkirk

    To add ---- personally I like to use 5/8 plywood rough side up.
    Lay the plywood first and then drill the holes for plumbing after --- saves the trouble of measuring and drilling when laying the plywood.


    Then apply an uncoupling / waterproofing material such as Ditra
    http://www.schluter.com/6_1_ditra.aspx

    This will help prevent tiles or grout cracking from any bounce in the floor as well waterproofing under the tiles.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Bathroom floor layers

    In my opinion I would not tear out anything that is not rotten You may need to use a hand chissel and a carpenters square to get to some of the tight spots. I would use the concrete backer board then a layer of tile make sure your floor grout is water resistant. When putting in a havy tub You may want to check the supports directly that would be under the tub near the floor joist. If you have extensive damage such as termite damage you may need to add to your floor joist and add extra supports. If you are going for a traditional 1920's look you may want to consider the subway tile or the one ince octagon tiles. With a tub that heavy you will need to take extra care in moving and placing the tub in order not to break the tile you may want to consider placing the tub in first then working the areas around the tub using a tile nipper for the smaller tiles. Make sure to wear eye protection.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Bathroom floor layers

    Put down underlayment right over the 8" boards, then lay cement board as a tile backer, then drill your holes, and then lay the tile on the floor. If the floor between the hallway and bath is uneven make a threshold from scrap wood to create a good transition.
    Last edited by SEOvB-SM; 04-22-2011 at 10:46 PM. Reason: Promotional signature removed.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    68

    Lightbulb Re: Bathroom floor layers

    I just did my (1916 Bungalow) bathroom over the last year. Ripped out many layers of flooring, just as you did. Ugly vinyl, plywood, lino, tar paper, then I got to the sub floor. My tile guy put in, I believe, hardi board. It had the squares & circles on it to make cutting & screwing it down easier. I only needed the one layer, since that (with my tile) made the floor almost level with the wood in the hallway.

    After 3 months of looking for the perfect tile...I have this. (sorry, pics got fuzzy)


    I found a small piece of oak threshold at Lowes & sanded down the leading edge so I won't be stubbing my toe in the middle of the night! Gave it 3 coats of amber shellac & against the black hex with the dark gray grout...I'm very pleased.

    My plumber installed all my fixtures, including a new radiator. He sat the rad on small black round hard rubber disks. My tile won't crack & it has some cush. I'm sure something similar would work for your tub feet.


    Hope this helps!
    The true Craftsman is nearly extinct,
    now it's just Made in China Hidden Content

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,084

    Default Re: Bathroom floor layers

    Quote Originally Posted by BungalowMo View Post
    I just did my (1916 Bungalow) bathroom over the last year. Ripped out many layers of flooring, just as you did. Ugly vinyl, plywood, lino, tar paper, then I got to the sub floor. My tile guy put in, I believe, hardi board. It had the squares & circles on it to make cutting & screwing it down easier. I only needed the one layer, since that (with my tile) made the floor almost level with the wood in the hallway.

    After 3 months of looking for the perfect tile...I have this. (sorry, pics got fuzzy)


    I found a small piece of oak threshold at Lowes & sanded down the leading edge so I won't be stubbing my toe in the middle of the night! Gave it 3 coats of amber shellac & against the black hex with the dark gray grout...I'm very pleased.

    My plumber installed all my fixtures, including a new radiator. He sat the rad on small black round hard rubber disks. My tile won't crack & it has some cush. I'm sure something similar would work for your tub feet.


    Hope this helps!
    Can you reveal your total cost?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    68

    Default Re: Bathroom floor layers

    Total was about 5k. I had my neighbor do my tile work & his BIL is a plumber & he did all the plumbing, including replumbing my entire basement. The cost also includes shelves, towel bars & light fixtures off Ebay; my vintage sink & a new radiator from Radical Radiator Supply in MA.

    For tile work alone, walls & floor...under $1500.

    I'll make a separate post on all the work that was done, so as to not threadjack. This room was about as ugly as it gets in the beginning.
    The true Craftsman is nearly extinct,
    now it's just Made in China Hidden Content

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Tiverton, RI/Boston, MA
    Posts
    12

    Default Re: Bathroom floor layers

    Very cool! I'm looking to do a similar remodel in my 1920s house.

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