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Unread 01-29-2012, 09:45 AM   #1
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Gregg's home addition / renovation

Hi Folks,

It has been awhile since I last posted to the forum. I'm in the middle of a large renovation and need to confirm how best to tile a few areas.

Here is the construction materials used in the addition:

-9 1/2" Ibeams with 3/4 T&G plywood, which has been glued and screwed.
-The ibeams are about 16 feet spans

From what I've read, here is what I think I need to do for putting down tile on the floor:

- put down another layer of plywood perpendicular to the joists and screw it to the original 3/4 plywood, but not to joists.
- I think I need to use 3/8 or 1/2" plywood - please confirm
- In some of the forum post it does mention leaving a 1/8 gap between the two layers of plywood. I would appreciate finding out how to create the gap.
- I would then use a thinset to put down the detra and thin set and the tile.

Please confirm this is a correct process.

For one of my bathrooms I'm also putting in the electric radiant floor. I think the only adjustment I need to the above is to put the radiant system on top of the second layer of plywood add a self leveling compound and then put the thin set, detra , thin set, tile.

Please confirm this is correct.

I will also be putting in a shower. I found the mud bed information and have a couple of questions. Do I need to put anything between the mud bed and the plywood? Should I put an additional layer of plywood in the shower as well?

Also any recommendation for the thin set and where to get it in Canada.

Thanks in advance for your help.

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Unread 01-29-2012, 12:32 PM   #2
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Hi Gregg,

You say 16 foot spans which won't get you up to tiling specs. Did you mean 16 inch centers? The distance between the joists is about 14-1/2 inches?

Doubling up the subflooring is great but a waste of time if the framing is inadequate.
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Unread 01-29-2012, 03:26 PM   #3
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Hi John ,

Yes the spacing between the joists are 16" on centre and the longest unsupported section would be 15 to 16' on the main floor. The second floor of the addition is supported about 9 to 10' in from the wall and that is where the upstairs bathrooms is.

If the span is to large, is there anything I can do to make it work for tile?


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Unread 01-30-2012, 05:56 AM   #4
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You need to consult the I-joist manufacturer's span tables and determine where to put a support beam or load bearing wall to reduce the deflection to L/360 (for porcelain tile) or L/720 for natural stone. If you have trouble reading the tables, contact the manufacturer's tech support staff.

You won't need another layer of subfloor for porcelain tile, but you do if installing natural stone. The 1/8" gap is between the sheets in a given layer, not between layers.
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