About to Get Started [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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05-12-2005, 02:27 PM
Hello all!

So, I've bought the book, I'm reading through it, and I'm getting started on what will become my weekend project for the next several weekends. I've been reading the forum for a little while now, and I think I'm finally ready to get some expert advice before I begin! :)

I'll keep this brief since I will most likely be back for more. This weekend, we're starting with subfloor. My kitchen's current floor consists of a 3/4" plywood plank floor (not sure if that's what you'd call it) with 3/4" particle board on top of that. The plywood looks like 8" tongue-and-groove planks. At least from what I can tell from under the house. We're ripping out the particle board and replacing it with plywood. Once the subfloor is in shape, we plan on installing 12" ceramic tile over Ditra. My questions are:

1. What's the thinnest plywood I can go with? More to the point, what's the thinnest YOU would go with? :) We have height issues which aren't a big deal, but for aesthetics, we'd like to go as thin as possible.

2. When laying plywood, what kind of spacing do I need to keep between the pieces? I've read 1/8" between them and 1/4" at the edges. Is that correct?

3. Should I glue the layers together? I've read conflicting reports going back through the forums. What's the final word on this?

The house is a pier and beam with 16"oc joists under the entire house. The joists in the kitchen are 2x6 that have been sistered on either side by a 1x6. This is only under the kitchen. I guess they decided the kitchen needed more support than the rest of the house. There is a crossbeam running under the joists that goes almost through the dead center of the length of the kitchen.

I'm attaching a drawing of the layout of my floor along with what I think is the pertinent information. Any and all help is greatly appreciated. Thank you all so much for creating a place for newbies like me!

Damon Courtney

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05-12-2005, 05:46 PM
Welcome, Damon!

If you have a post and beam house, chances are the bottom layer of subfloor is T&G planks, probably 2x6. That and the sistered joists will make a good foundation for your tile.

You should remove the particle board. In it's place, install 1/2" exterior rated plywood, Grades AC, BC or CC (plugged and sanded). You don't need T&G plywood, and you don't glue it to the subfloor. You do leave 1/8" between the sheets, and 1/4" along the walls. And good job on selecting Ditra for your underlayment!