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Unread 10-28-2020, 08:37 AM   #1
therealdl2
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Mr. and Mrs. DL's Hall Bath Renovation Extraordinaire

Hello All,

Long time listener first time caller. I have been lurking for years, waiting for the opportunity to tap the hive mind here. I am an avid DIYer that's completed entire down to the stud remodels myself, just never really any tiling.

The bathroom in question is a hall/guest/kids bathroom. 60" double vanity, toilet, and 60"x30" tub alcove. Pretty standard.

My first question is what trowel size to use for the tile chosen in the attached picture. The floor tile is a 16"x32" porcelain (massive I know). The wall tile is a 11"x13" porcelain hex tile. And the accent tile will be the pebble tile (back of niches and accent strip on wall).

For those that want to keep reading, here is my full plan. Take the shower walls and tub out, Kerdi Board in the tub alcove, kerdi band at tub flange w/kerdi fix. New cast iron tub by the way.

Tile on walls in non-wet area. Will tile directly to drywall.

The floor. I have 16" on center 2x10s (9.25"). Spanned 12 ft. See attached picture of joist stamp. The deflecto says L/426 if using unknown wood in great shape. The joists are in great shape. On top of the joists, I have a layer of 1/2" plywood (see attached picture of the stamp on that layer) and on that I have 3/4" ply with a mosiac tile directly on that.

Second Question. Can I scrape off the mosiac tile and lay ditra right on that ply and then lay those big 16x32s? I am using schulter all-set for all the tile.
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Unread 10-28-2020, 09:30 AM   #2
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Welcome back, Chris.

This is not the same bathroom you started in June, right?

The nominal 1/2" CD grade plywood you have as a first subfloor layer is just a little less than worthless in that application. It's providing an unwanted spacer raising the level of your finished floor. If the nominal 3/4" plywood on top of it is an exterior glue plywood of better grade and properly fastened to the joists, you have a single layer subfloor that most manufacturers of tile substrates consider sufficient for use of their products.

If you can get the surface sufficiently clean and sufficiently flat (it's not) to accommodate the bonding of the Ditra and those large format tiles, yes, you could do that. Sufficiently flat is described by the ceramic tile industry as no deviation from intended plane of more than 1/8th" in ten feet nor 1/16th" in two feet. That's a very flat floor an uncommon in wood framed floors without some help.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 10-28-2020, 09:52 AM   #3
therealdl2
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Actually I never started that bathroom, I will in the future continue that thread. This is a different bathroom.

Thanks, once I get the tile up and the tub out I'll post some more pics before deciding whether or not rip up the subfloor.

What size grout joint would you recommend for the floor and wall tile? I'm leaning toward 1/8"? I would like to use the same grout and color for floor and wall. A white or light gray color, I'm looking at Spectralock 1.
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Unread 10-28-2020, 10:05 AM   #4
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Grout joint size is generally determined by the tiles. The industry standards call for a joint width three times the difference in size between the largest and smallest tiles of the same nominal dimension in the layout. I recommend you gather several tiles from different boxes, stand them on edge face to back, and lay a straightedge across the top edges to gauge the consistency of size before you settle on a joint width.

The tile manufacturer will frequently have a joint width recommendation for the particular tile as well.

If you'll type spectralock 1 into the advanced search feature you'll find some discussions of that new product. I've not used it.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 10-31-2020, 09:14 AM   #5
therealdl2
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I have the flooring up and see attached pictures of it’s condition. When walking in it I see parts of it deflecting. Not the joists but the plywood itself. That combined with the fact that it’s a little rotted around the flange. I’m going to replace it.

My question is, in the hallway I have the joist tops then 1/2” plywood then 3/4” hardwood flooring. So if I’m ripping out the bathroom flooring, should I replace with 2 layers or one? Should I just do one layer of 3/4” then with tile, ditra, and thinset mortar layer, I’ll come close to the hallway height right?
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Unread 10-31-2020, 09:26 AM   #6
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Over 16" joist centers you can use a single layer nominal 3/4" plywood subfloor and Ditra as far as Schluter is concerned. Whether you'll match the height of your hallway flooring is something you'll need to determine, but compensating for differences between tile and wood flooring heights is one of the easiest to accomplish with a wood reducer between the two.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 10-31-2020, 09:35 AM   #7
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Quote:
My question is, in the hallway I have the joist tops then 1/2” plywood then 3/4” hardwood flooring. So if I’m ripping out the bathroom flooring, should I replace with 2 layers or one? Should I just do one layer of 3/4” then with tile, ditra, and thinset mortar layer, I’ll come close to the hallway height right?
If someone put 1/2" plywood as a subfloor, he apparently cheated the material. The subfloor should be .07" to be stable enough. I am using 1/4" Hardibacker as an underlayment for tiling and with regular floor tile, I perfectly meet the thickness of hardwoods.
Picture 1 shows Hardibacker placed over the subfloor without using glue, I use an staple airgun which makes a very durable and flexible base for tiling. When laying Hardibacker over plywood, make sure it overlaps the seams of the subfloor.
Picture 2. Porcelain plank style tiles meeting the hardwood flooring of the next room perfectly. I used flexible sealant to fill in the small gap between the wood and tiles.
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Unread 10-31-2020, 09:57 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Heather
Picture 1 shows Hardibacker placed over the subfloor without using glue, I use an staple airgun which makes a very durable and flexible base for tiling.
Once again, Heather, that is not a manufacturer approved method of installing Hardiebacker. And if by "without using glue" means you did not use a thinset mortar under the Hardiebacker panels, that is also not acceptable to the manufacturer nor the tile industry.
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Unread 11-01-2020, 07:50 PM   #9
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You all will think I’m crazy but here’s how I got the old cast iron tub up. Haha. I decided to go with one single layer of 3/4” ply for the new subfloor. What are the recommendations for that? I’m going to call my local lumber supplier as they usually have better quality. I’ve bought miles of crown molding from them in the past.
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Unread 11-01-2020, 10:51 PM   #10
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Good job, Chris. I sometimes use a pair of ratchet straps to stand a cast-iron tub up. Not as fast as your come-along set-up...but effective where I can’t physically stand close enough to lift the tub end by hand.

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Unread 11-08-2020, 02:02 PM   #11
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I’ve gotten the 3/4” plywood floor up. I’m going to lay down new 3/4” exterior grade AC plywood. Non tongue and groove. As you can see in the pics, the 1/2” layer is still down. Do I really need to take that up? Can I glue and screw the new layer on top? I would use screws long enough to reach the joists. It’s just all the walls are framed on top of that 1/2” layer. It’ll be a super pain to get all the permittee cut.
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Unread 11-08-2020, 10:11 PM   #12
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I believe CX stated in post #2 that what you just outlined would be an acceptable method as long as you use appropriate fasteners with adequate length and ensure you're driving them into the joists. After removing any debris and dust from the old floor, you'd probably need a good coat of wood glue across the entire surface to get a good bond and minimize the chance of a squeaky floor. I don't think construction adhesive would be good in this scenario because it would be hard to coat the entire surface and you'd end up with voids and air pockets most likely. If you decide to remove the 1/2" subfloor, you'll want to install blocking at any and all unsupported edges.
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Unread 11-29-2020, 07:47 PM   #13
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Alright I got an update. Electrical and plumbing rough inspections passed. Phew. I included a pic of the double vanity plumbing. I spent all day today kerdibanding. It took way longer than I anticipated and I had already pre cut each section of band. I kerdi fixed to the tub flange but I may place another wet bead at the flange as I tile.

I am thinking ahead and have a question on how I am going to handle this outside corner. My wall tile is 1/4” thick and I am using a pencil tile that sits a bit proud of the wall tile. I am going to run the wall tile around the room like wainscoting. That level is shown drawn horizontally on the wall. So how will I make the turn with the pencil tile? Should I run the pencil tile all the way down to the floor vertically? I bought a length of schulter jolly in white pvc that I could use on that outside corner. Also above the horizontal line where the tile will end, should I just put drywall corner bead to make that transition? Should it go over the kerdi board?

Also when setting that pencil tile, should I be setting that in thinset while I’m doing the field tile? Or do I come back later and set it with kerdi fix?

Thanks!!!
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