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Unread 08-24-2021, 06:44 PM   #1
Midnight
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Tiled wall & hardwood floor - how to transition without quarter round and baseboard?

I'm remodeling my fireplace surround. This is an elevated gas fireplace, so it doesn't require a hearth extension (per the manufacturer). I have engineered hardwood floor that goes right up to the fireplace wall.

I plan to use porcelain tile over hardiebacker for the fireplace surround. For a more modern finish, I want to avoid any baseboard or molding at the bottom, i.e. the finished look should appear like the tile goes all the way down to the floor. (There used to be quarter round before the remodel.)

But I'm uncertain about two details:

1. Should the wall finish (hardiebacker & tile) end above the hardwood flooring, so that there's a vertical gap? Or should the wall finish go down to the subfloor, with a horizontal gap to the flooring?

2. Either way, I'm thinking of leaving just a 1/4" gap between the tile and flooring, and filling it with caulk. Any problems with this approach?

Anything else I should consider? I'm a complete novice, so I'd appreciate any tips or advice. Thanks!
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Unread 08-25-2021, 10:34 AM   #2
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Welcome, Kevin,

Am having a little trouble visualizing what you've got going on there. Some photos would be really helpful. Use the little paper clip icon located just above this dialog box to attach photos from your device.
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Unread 08-25-2021, 04:35 PM   #3
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Welcome back, Kevin.

I would run the wood floor under the wall tile and stop the wall tile and CBU above the floor. I would leave a gap of no more than 1/8th" or one grout joint width (whichever is greater) and treat that gap with a flexible sealant.

If you, instead, stop the wood floor short of the tile wall, I'd want a slightly larger gap, perhaps the 1/4" that you proposed.

With the tile stopped above the floor, you can probably get by with using caulk as you proposed. With the floor stopped short of the wall, I'd recommend a flexible sealant for sure. Wood floors tend to wander about a good bit.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-27-2021, 10:40 AM   #4
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Huge thanks CX! I will run the wood floor under the wall tile and leave a 1/8" gap, as you suggest.

To achieve this, I'll probably need to extend out my wall finish another 1/2" or so. I'll probably double up my Hardiebacker on the wall. Fortunately the protrusion won't be obvious since there'll be a wood mantel frame surrounding the tiled wall area anyway.

Will post again if I have any other questions. Thanks!
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Unread 08-27-2021, 11:07 AM   #5
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Rather than doubling the CBU, I'd recommend you use some rips of plywood of adequate thickness to fur out the wall studs for your CBU installation. Attach the strips with construction or wood glue and adequate mechanical fasteners to act as gluing clamps.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 08-27-2021, 03:15 PM   #6
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I agree that plywood or wood shims would normally be better. But this is for a gas fireplace surround, including a substantial area that overlaps the metal fireplace face (no combustible materials allowed). Hence my preference for a double layer of CBU here. Or am I not thinking about it right?

Thanks again!
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Unread 08-27-2021, 03:33 PM   #7
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Can't say, Kevin, can't see it from here.

Some photos would certainly help.

To what are you fastening your first layer of CBU?
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Unread 08-27-2021, 05:15 PM   #8
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I have also have an elevated gas fireplace that doesn’t require a hearth per the manufacturer- so the wood floor runs into the fireplace tile. Hard to take a photo - I’m in the middle of renovating basically my entire house. My master bedroom is pretty dusty due to everything going on in there + in master bathroom. Plus, the new freestanding tub is sitting basically right in front of the fireplace at the moment.

The caulk (I think it’s caulk - might be something else) line was done quickly by the floor guy awhile ago. I am having new tile installed on my bedroom fireplace in a couple weeks - my GC said that the line where the wood floor and fireplace tile meet will look better when the tile setter is finished replacing the old tile with the new marble mosaic tile.

Is this what you are referring to?
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