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Unread 08-07-2020, 07:18 PM   #1
qwertyjjj
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Raising hardwood floor

Bit of a communication mix up but we've had 3/8 stone tile installed on 3/8 ply and it's slightly higher than the hardwood due to the thinset. Probably at least 1/4" higher.
Really didn't want to have a transition but it's an entrance tiled area that connects to a big 750 sq ft of wood flooring.
Planipatch is not possible due to adjacent rooms/walls. Anything else I can do to raise the wood in the immediate area?
Hardwood floor is not yet installed. Subfloor is 3/4 osb
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Unread 08-07-2020, 07:54 PM   #2
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Let's back up a bit, Gordon. You installed stone tile directly to nominal 3/8ths" plywood underlayment over a nominal 3/4" plywood subfloor over joists with ________ on center spacing? Fill in that blank for us.
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Unread 08-07-2020, 09:26 PM   #3
qwertyjjj
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OC 29" with some cross bracing every 2ft
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Unread 08-07-2020, 09:36 PM   #4
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You've got some problems there that you'll probably want to address before you decide what to do with the remainder of your floor.

29 inches on center spacing would be very, very unusual. I think you better take another look at that. What you're looking for is the distance between the joists under your subflooring. Customarily you'll have either 16 inches, 19.2 inches, or 24 inches. I've never encountered 29 inch spacing and don't know how they'd make common 4x8 sheets of plywood fit on such a structure without unnecessary waste. Check that measurement for us again, please.

And while you're measuring, get the type, size and unsupported span of those floor joists.

But the rest of my statement was correct about the stone installation?
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Unread 08-07-2020, 10:32 PM   #5
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They really are. House was from 1910.
29 OC but have been cross braced sometime after every 2ft.
Joists span around 12ft and are big ol' 3x11s actual.
Floor was leveled with 2x6s on each side of the joist so that might reduce it to 24-26" in places (2 x 1.5")

Yes, 3/8 tile onto 3/8 ply, which is on 3/4 OSB
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Unread 08-08-2020, 07:09 AM   #6
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Interesting. It might be helpful if you'd add a geographic location to your User Profile so folks could see in what part of what country this structure was built. You have any photos of this structure before the OSB subfloor was installed?

You've got a problem with the tile installation you might want to address before you move on to your wood flooring consideration. The ceramic tile industry requires a minimum of nominal 1/2-inch plywood underlayment for a tile installation bonded directly to the plywood to achieve a residential service rating. And that is over a maximum joist spacing of 16 inches on center. The maximum joist spacing for which that installation method is recognized is 19.2 inches on center and that requires the underlayment to be nominal 5/8th-inch material. Your nominal 3/8ths-inch plywood is not recognized as a suitable substrate in that application.

The natural stone tile industry requires the same or better substrate, but does not permit any joist spacing more than 16 inches on center for the joist spacing and also requires the joist structure to meet an L/720 deflection minimum. While your joist structure might meet the L/360 required for ceramic tile, I think it will be short of the L/720 for stone. We'd need more information about the joists to determine that.

Entirely up to you whether want to stay with the stone tile installation as it currently stands, but I'd suggest you might want to re-evaluate that decision. That might also let you end up with a higher elevation for the tile installation, which would then allow for a second layer of subflooring under the adjacent wood flooring to make the surfaces closer to the same elevation if that is your goal.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-08-2020, 07:21 AM   #7
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The thing is they cross braced the joists.
So every 24" you have parallel 2x6s strengthening the joists, a bit like blocking that spans the 29" gap.
So, is really difficult to say what it would equal. I would think because of the cross bracing that the strength factor is nearer 16".

What are some options to level the wood flooring? Can I use adhesive or planipatch underneath the section near tile and then squash the wood down and nail?
Couple of layers of Rosin paper maybe?
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Unread 08-08-2020, 07:54 AM   #8
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The added between-joist blocking does nothing at all to improve your joist design deflection, Gordon. But if your joist are actually a full 11 inches by 3 inches, joist deflection is not your primary concern here. And if the joist material is of sufficient grade, species, and condition, the structure might even meet the L/720 deflection requirement.

Your problem is with the subflooring and tiling substrate. The minimum unsupported span of your subfloor is 22 1/2 inches and that is in the wrong direction for the OSB strength axis. Along the strength axis it's 26 inches by your description. That's excessive when considering a ceramic tile installation and more excessive when condidering a natural stone installation. Couple that with an insufficient underlayment and you're just inviting trouble.

Tiling directly to a plywood underlayment is tricky business when it's done correctly and yours was not done correctly. You wanna stay with what you've got, that's entirely up to you. I fear you're looking at a stone tile failure in your future.

Did you make the decisions on the tile installation method or was that done by a tile contractor?

As to meeting the wood flooring, I would discuss that with your wood flooring contractor. He can probably make you some wood transition strips to go around the tile installation and matching the tile height on one side and the new wood flooring height on the other side. A very common and fairly simple transition in most cases.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-08-2020, 08:41 AM   #9
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There is no wood flooring contractor, it's me doing it
The tile though plus plywood was asked for by the tile contractor - he may not have factored in joists though. He tends to put thicker adhesive in such situations
Is 6x24 tile - maybe small enough to be strong

I was hoping to avoid transitions and just have it flush but doesn't seem like much choice. Rosin Paper shims?
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Unread 08-08-2020, 11:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon
Is 6x24 tile - maybe small enough to be strong
3/8ths" natural stone tiles cannot be presumed to have any strength at all.

Rosin paper shims to raise the wood flooring a quarter-inch?

This will be a nail-down wood flooring?
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Unread 08-08-2020, 11:44 AM   #11
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If it's a 1/4" then I don't have much choice apart from planipatch or to raise the whole floor with plywood.
It might be easier to rip up the plywood for the tile and put membrane but I glued it so it's going to rip the OSB to bits.
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Unread 08-08-2020, 11:52 AM   #12
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I don't know if it's a quarter-inch, Gordon, I'm just going by what you said in your opening post.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon
Probably at least 1/4" higher.
Again, is this to be a nail-down wood flooring?
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Unread 08-08-2020, 04:13 PM   #13
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Tile is a distributed load. Cross-bracing the joists helps tie a point load on one joist and shares it with an adjacent one(s), but does not change the overall deflection rating of the floor. It does change the resonant frequency of the floor. But, cross-bracing is most useful prior to the installation of the subflooring, which, when glued and screwed to the joists, ties the joists together, similar to cross-bracing. Cross-bracing prevents the joist from twisting, which keeps it vertical, so the load is carried across the height of the joists.
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Unread 08-08-2020, 04:54 PM   #14
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Yes, nail down. Sorry missed that
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