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Unread 09-29-2019, 01:39 PM   #1
gslenk
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Considering tile for a kitchen remodel

But I believe it is long shot deflection-wise. Sistering might be too invasive/difficult to be worth the effort.

Orange squiggly line is where tile would go (also under cabinets/island etc.)
Green "Tee" is about where the supporting wall in the basement ends.
Shorter black arrow is 14.5ft, long black arrow is 23ft.
Blue lines represent an AC ductwork soffit in the basement.
Red box is a pillar in the basement.

The joists are 2x8 nominal, 16" OC., in the direction of the black arrows.

Maybe that support pillar is more helpful than I am imagining? I am not familiar with typical pillar/support installation methods. Is it likely that the way it is installed, that my span is really from the kitchen wall to the pillar (and the joists are hung to something the pillar supports)? I'd have to rip apart the AC soffit/chase drywall to investigate.

If that is the case, and the pillar actually measures 11ft from the far supporting wall, the tile option may be back on the table, without any extra work to the joists.

Suppose I decide to take on the headache of sistering joists (remove ceiling drywall, work around or remove/replace AC ductwork), do I sister end to end or just shove the longest 2x8 I can manage in the middle of the 23ft span?
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Unread 09-29-2019, 02:09 PM   #2
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Lenny, without a bit of intrusive investigation of that floor we'd all be just guessing at what you've got. You can open either the top or the bottom of the floor and if you plan to install new floor covering in any event I'd likely make some holes in the floor above. A 3" or 4" hole saw is usually my weapon of choice for such investigation unless I'm sure I need to remove the entire subfloor. Same could be done in the ceiling below.

I think it unlikely that the "pillar" is solely decorative and is more likely supporting a support beam of some sort. Without seeing exactly what you've got in the area below, though, that's still just a guess.

Poke some holes and get some useful data would be my recommendation.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 09-29-2019, 02:59 PM   #3
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So if I find a perpendicular (to the floor joists) 2x8, or some sort of beam, that the floor joists attach to, then that would count as one endpoint for the span right?

I'll have to rip up some drywall from below. Above that area is hardwood flooring that I intend to keep. I just wanted to confirm my suspicion is reasonable before I go ripping into stuff to verify.

I'd be 50/50 split on deciding between tile/hardwood assuming tile becomes a viable option.
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Unread 09-29-2019, 03:32 PM   #4
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For the span I'm seeing (or imagining) there, the beam would need to be substantially more than a 2x8, Lenny, but yes, in theory that would be an end support for your floor joists.
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Unread 09-30-2019, 06:31 AM   #5
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I installed beautiful, 5" wide, 3/4" finish in place white oak in our kitchen, Lenny, it's gorgeous.

It's also soft, and scratches and dents. My wife is a dropper, which doesn't help. It's been down for I think 6 years now, still looks pretty good, but I know where all the wounds are.

If you can make tile work, do so.
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Unread 10-12-2019, 04:57 AM   #6
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I did some investigating, there is a steel/metal beam that the column holds up. So that makes the span about 12ft. Let’s say 13ft to be safe. In either case deflector says no go. I would have needed a 11ft span max to be good.

So what is appropriate regarding sistering the joists? Do I need 2by material that covers the full span, top plate to beam? Center section only? If not the full span, then how much length and where should it be placed relative to the original span?
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Unread 10-12-2019, 06:11 AM   #7
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From what I've read here, Lenny, the sisters need to about two thirds the length of the existing joists, and placed roughly equal distance from each end. You can screw them to the existing or, if you have a framing nailer, nail them on. In either case a bunch of construction adhesive will help, as will various clamps to help hold them in place and draw them tight to the existing joists.
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Unread 10-12-2019, 09:37 AM   #8
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Technically, Dan, the center two thirds is the minimum length for sistering to improve design deflection of those floor joists.

I personally prefer more. While there is no need for the ends of the sisters to actually be supported by the load bearing supports, I like them to get as close to the supports as possible.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 10-13-2019, 04:51 AM   #9
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I assume this has to be a single board for the sister span right? In other words, I couldn't use two 2x8's that are 6.5ft long with a joint in the middle to cover the span if I wanted to get the full span?

I'm thinking my (easier) approach will be rip out the subfloor (instead of drywall from below in the basement) and either...

1) Get ~13' length 2x8s and try to fit the full span, cutting them down until they fit (they will still be more than 2/3 the full span), and get them under at least one of the bearing points while covering the middle two thirds of span. Then alternate for each joist sister which bearing point they rest on. Or should they still be centered regardless?

2) Use two lengths of 2x8s for each joist to cover the span, staggering (alternating which side of "middle" the joint falls on) the joints as far from the middle as possible.

Which would be best?
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Unread 10-13-2019, 05:44 AM   #10
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Hi Lenny,

Option 1 is only choice.

The sisters need to be continuous so no splices in the middle. Personally, I’d use 10’ lengths min; 12 would be better.

No need for them to rest on on the beams. Glue them to the joists using locktite PL3 adhesive and 3” deck screws (not drywall). I’ll often use 1/4 washers on the screws to ensure the two boards are pulled together tightly.

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Unread 10-13-2019, 06:20 AM   #11
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If it were me, I'd do it from below unless I already had to pull up the existing subfloor and intend to use the sisters as a means to level the floor. I'd rather replace the drywall than have to install all the edge blocking that will come from having to cut out the subfloor.

Either way, you'll be challenged with finding 2X8's in that length that are straight or flat. Bows, crowns, cups, ugh. You'll have to cull through the pile at your supplier. When you start installing them you'll find that some part of the sister will be above or below the top of the existing joist (if installing from the top) or below the bottom of the existing joists (if installing from the bottom).

There's no strength to be gained by running them all the way to each end support, but doing so brings difficulties with fitting them.

I sistered about 25 2X10X13's when I finished my basement, and I went full length because I didn't know any better. If I had to do it again I'd cut them just short of the supports, and I'd rip 1/2" off each one so I could fit them in easily.
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Unread 10-13-2019, 07:34 AM   #12
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Thanks PC. Dan, I would keep the subfloor, but I highly suspect (based on my bathroom remodel) that it is useless 1/2" plywood. It will be critical to give myself enough depth so that the finished kitchen tile surface is flush with the rest of the surrounding hardwood. My bathroom ended up being ~3/8" higher than the adjacent room, but I was able to use a threshold. The kitchen will be an open design, so I cannot use thresholds/etc. to make up for floor height differences.

In regards to bows/cups/crowns, I was thinking If I don't get lucky to have a perfectly flat plane for the subfloor to lay on, either plane/shave sisters to match existing joists at high spots, and use sisters to slightly raise the floor (instead of shimming) at low spots. OR is that getting too carried away? I would like to avoid leveling AFTER the subfloor is installed this time. I learned that the hard way on the previous bathroom.
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Unread 10-13-2019, 09:09 AM   #13
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Since it looks like you'll be removing the subfloor You'll have an opportunity to lay a straight edge across the top of the joists, and then use the sisters to get it all level if need be.

My opinion of ripping the new joists still applies, unless it turns out the new ones are not as wide as the old ones. If they measure the same as the old they'll likely be wider in some spots, or slightly different from one to another, so you'd run the risk of putting downward pressure on the drywall below when pushing them into place. Ripping them will give you some wiggle room without decreasing strength by any significant amount, making your life much easier. But you'll know better once you measure the old vs. the new.
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Unread 11-02-2019, 12:28 PM   #14
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A few more followup questions:

1) hard to access areas: Use thinner (2x6 or even 2x4) sisters to get closer to full length or just use shorter 2x8's (say 2/3rds of the span) in the center of the span? Reason: Non-load bearing wall under and tons of plumbing/electric/HVAC ran in the cavity. This assumes I cannot get at it easily from above once the current subfloor is removed.

2) Thickness planning: Is one layer of say 1.25" Advantech better, or are two layers, ~3/4" and ~1/2", better? I assume regardless that Ditra would be required. I am aiming for flush floor transitions from tile to hardwood.
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Unread 11-02-2019, 03:54 PM   #15
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I'd probably opt for the 2X6's, Lenny, they're just going to be easier to handle and fit into position.

Have never used 1.25 ply, bet the stuff is heavy. Regardless, I'd probably go with 3/4" + 1/2" so that the 1/2 will bridge the gaps between the 3/4" sheets.

Screws. Lots and lots of screws.
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