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Unread 11-27-2020, 09:37 AM   #1
Valnic
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Recess Floor Advice

Hello,

First I'd like to say thank you for providing a place on the web to help with tiling!

Long story short; we are original owners of our home for 17 years (built 2003) and about 8 years ago, we had a contractor renovate our master bath. The shower failed and instead of just repairing the shower, we decided to gut it all because the job they did was that bad. I attached a photo that shows its current state after demo. I'm currently in the process of filing for a permit for moving the drains and adding a GFCI outlet for the Moen U manifold.

I would really like to have a curbless shower but I'm not sure if it would be the wisest thing here given the OC of the joists. They are supposed to be 24" OC but as you can see in the photo, they're all over the place. My idea to recess the floor would be to use a 48" x 36" x 1" Kerdi pan that will be trimmed on the long edges about 3/4" to fit the space.

So my question is, would it be feasible to recess the floor and if yes, what would be considered a good way of going about it?
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Unread 11-27-2020, 10:11 AM   #2
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Welcome, Gary.

The short answer, considering your engineered joists, is no.

You cannot cut any part of the top chord of those joists, not even a little. While you might be able to cobble together a way to drop your subfloor between the joists, it is not likely to meet the manufacturer's recommendations. But if you can determine the manufacturer (printed on the joists), you might contact them and get their recommendation for lowering the subfloor between the joists. That won't buy you any more than the thickness of the existing subflooring and might not be worth the effort at all.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 11-27-2020, 10:46 AM   #3
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I think the best you can in this situation is to recess the subfloor where the pan will go down to be even with the top of the joists, instead of being on top of the joists. This will only get you a recess of 3/4" assuming you're subfloor is 3/4". To use a 1" Schluter pan in this scenario you would have to build up the rest of the bathroom floor 1/4" to create a curbless design.

This is basically what I plan to do. I am going to use the method outlined in this video to recess the pan 3/4". My pan is 1 1/8" so my build up is a little higher but I'm ripping out almost an inch of mortar substrate so it's not an issue.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OexDcwZKvkc&t=225s
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Unread 12-22-2020, 02:38 PM   #4
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Adding plywood to subfloor

I am adding 3/4" plywood to an existing 3/4" T&G OSB subfloor that's installed over engineered open web joists that's 24"" OC. Is it recommended to apply beads of construction glue between the plywood and OSB subfloor?
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Unread 12-22-2020, 02:45 PM   #5
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This is in conjunction with your shower project, Gary?

If this is to be a subfloor for a ceramic or stone tile installation, the short answer is no.

I personally don't recommend trying to glue anything structural to OSB, but I really recommend against trying to glue layers of subflooring using anything produced in beads from a gun tube.

Might I ask why you're using a second layer of nominal 3/4" plywood, rather than something thinner?

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 12-22-2020, 03:24 PM   #6
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Titebond makes a canister spray gun adhesive for layering sub floor. I think it's a poly based adhesive.

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Unread 12-23-2020, 07:44 AM   #7
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@CX: Yes, this is part of my bathroom project. This house was built in 2003 and the builder installed a floor heating element (which never worked) that raised the floor about 5/8" and then tile on top of that. So since we want a curbless shower, we decided to buy the low profile shower pan from Schluter which is 1 1/8". We had to trim it some so it's now about 1".

Also, not all of the joists are 24" OC. Some are further apart and I noticed enough deflection that I wanted to add some strength. This will also help us build up the floor around the shower pan. So with 3/4" ply and a Ditra Heat layer, we're pretty level with the pan. And since the floor was already a bit higher than the adjacent room, we only need to use a 3/4" transition at the door.
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Unread 12-23-2020, 09:46 AM   #8
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Good reasoning.

I've combined your threads for the project here. Please keep all your project questions on this thread so folks can see what you're working on and what's been previously asked and answered. A moderator can give it a more generic title any time you'd like to suggest one.
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Unread 12-24-2020, 10:43 AM   #9
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Floor leveling options

While building out a long (40") niche for the wall that will be to the side of our free standing tub, I discovered how badly the floor is out of level. The area around the shower area is nearly perfect but the rest of the floor is randomly uneven. I think the gaps are between 1/8 to 1/4".

My original plan was to lay down 3/4" plywood and Ditra to bring the floor up to the shower pan for a curbless shower. And I am determined to have a curbless shower. But this bathroom just seems to be fighting me every inch of the way.

I have searched and read through quite a few posts about similar floor leveling issues but I still don't know if my "new" plan will work. My plan now is to install 1/2" plywood, prep for SLC and use enough SLC to bring the entire floor up to the point where I can install Ditra Heat that will be level with our 1" shower pan. Or scrap adding plywood all together and mud the entire floor (minus the showerpan) and build it to the perfect height where the Ditra will meet the height of the shower pan.

Any thoughts or suggestions?
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Unread 12-24-2020, 11:00 AM   #10
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If you have the option of placing an absolute minimum of 3/4" of deck mud over the highest point of your subfloor, Gary, I would always elect that option.

And as you speak of leveling your floor, keep in mind that your tiles care not at all about level, they care only about flat and nothing gives you a better option to make a flat floor at exactly the correct height than deck mud properly placed.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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