Author Topic: Flooring advice....  (Read 2042 times)

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hitekredneck13

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Flooring advice....
« on: March 14, 2013, 06:34:05 PM »
The wife and I wanted to put laminate flooring down throughout the main floor of our home. We're currently removing ceramic tile and around 3/8" of thin-set mortar...yeah you read that right. We're having a hell of a time.

We've rented a power scraper which has done nothing. Hammer and floor chisel is taking some tiles away but it's a very very painstakingly slow process. I'm talking 8 hours and 20 tiles later, kinda slow. The subfloor is wood. Does anyone have any sort of suggestions for this? Maybe some fellas have some experience with this one.

Once all this tile is up, I don't see this being a huge problem, but I have to get there first.  :hairpull:

Thanks in advance.

Offline Keith

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2013, 08:15:05 PM »
I have never done what I'm going to suggest, but what do you think about a hammer.  Is it possible to just break the tiles and mortar and then scrape them up?

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hitekredneck13

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2013, 08:32:13 PM »
I did forget to mention that none of the rental places around here had a hammer drill with or without the scraper attachment available.

Good idea Keith but it's not an option for me.

We're still pounding away with the hammer and chisels. I'm quickly running out of pain meds lol...  :blackeye:

Offline Frobozz

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2013, 10:55:39 AM »


 

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2013, 12:17:47 PM »
I've used the hammer drill with scraper blade.  Just have to be careful with that because it will take chunks out of the floor under it if you go in the wrong angle.  Depending on your budget and skill you could take a circular saw with a blade that can cut through the grout and cut the tiles in like 3'x3' sections then cut the sub floor and pull it out in sections.  Of course then you have to replace the subfloor



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Offline keetedw

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2013, 08:03:29 PM »
I did flooring (as a job) for two years and I feel your pain.

Unfortunately, there's nothing but more physical labor, blisters, and medication/alcohol in your future.

A hammer is a good start, cracking or breaking the tiles as much as you can.  From there, I'd use a big ass pry bar (36" wrecking bar - about $20 at home depot).  It'll slide along the wood and into the ceramic to chisel it up.  I like it because the narrower end will help chip up the tile and the end, while tapered, won't easily dig into the wood floor.

You're going to deal with a few issues no matter what, though, because you're on wood

1 - it's going to take a long time.  I had to tear up a second layer of sub floor (chip board) on my own kitchen when I wanted to lay down laminate.  I had to resort to the wrecking bar because nothing else would get under the screwed-down, glued-down sub floor without completely tearing up the pressboard subfloor under it.  It sucks, especially the more tired and sore you get.

2 - It won't be perfect.  Once you have the tile up, you're going to have piles of grout/glue to clean up.  Your best bet is a floor scraper.  4" to start (available at home depot for about $15, additional for extra blades) and 8" if you're lucky (also available at home depot for about $30, plus blades).  Again, it uses razor blades, so you're going to ruin your subfloor here and there.  Don't fret it.  It's a relatively simple fix for gouges.

3 - No matter what, your subfloor is going to be pooched.  Either in massive gouges or broken entirely.  Replace what you need to in large sections, but the rest can be filled in with a floor leveler.  It too is available at home depot either pre-mixed or as a powder.  Whichever direction you go (if you need it), get it with a latex additive instead of water.  The latex will flex once it's set, which means it won't bust apart once it is set.  Do as good a job as you can with the initial coat of leveler, but don't get carried away.  If it needs two coats, it needs two coats (deeper holes).  The less material you put on at once, the less you'll have to do for the final prep for the flooring.

- Break off any loose pieces of wood that are sticking up and sweep/vacuum the floor before you begin.  You're using a cement, so it doesn't have to be perfect, but loose debris will effect the contact and could cause issues later...which you don't want.

4 - A clean/smooth floor is going to be necessary, even for laminate.  The pad used is very thin, so even a little piece of debris can cause you issues during install.  Once your subfloor is replaced and your leveler applied, use the 4" scraper and go over the whole floor, knocking down the high points of leveler and checking for any loose screws that stick up above the subfloor (obviously, tighten those down, or replace any that aren't gripping properly.  Loose screws lead to squeaks later...and WILL piss you off).  Once this is done, twice (seriously, the second time, lightly scrape the scraper across the floor looking for any high points or screws that stick up), sweep it a couple times and vacauum if you can (shop vac).

From there, I'm not sure if you've installed laminate before, but here are some additional tips/tricks.

1 - Remove all the baseboard and, if you're lucky, ensure the sheetrock has enough clearance that the laminate can extend under the edge of the sheetrock.

- Why?  Laminate expands and contracts with temperature and a large enough room can move 1/2" - 3/4", even as much as 1" end to end.  Putting the edge of the laminate right up to the edge of the sheetrock allows it to expand under the sheetrock and, when it does contract, it will still be covered by the baseboard

2 - Door frames/jambs - Use a jamb saw for these.  They're also available at home depot pretty cheap ($10-$15) and make quick, clean, work.  Even if it's for just one project and 4-6 cuts, they're worth it.

- Getting the right height - take a scrap piece of laminate (or flip a good piece face down) and butt it up against the door jam (you can use this same method to create clearance with sheetrock).  Place the saw flat against the laminate and cut smoothly and evenly through the base of the jamb.  This will ensure your laminate will fit flush under the jamb and may not need sealant/caulk when you're done.

Otherwise, measure twice, cut once, allow an additional 15% of product for cutaway pieces and such (buy extra boxes, you can always take back what you don't use, but if you're short, they may run out of your exact pattern and color...also, each batch the manufacturer produces will have very slight color variations.  Buy them from the same pallet and there's a much better chance they'll all match). 

Also, if possible, run the wood so its length lines up with how the light comes into the room.  This way, the natural light is highlighting the length of the wood, and not the many, many seams.  This may not be possible, so defaulting to running the length of the wood to the length of the room will work better in those situations.

DM me if you have any other questions or if any of this is confusing.  Lots of info and I'm somewhat distracted with work.
 

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2013, 08:43:21 PM »
Another thing you can do if you muck up the subfloor is put another on top.  I did this in my kitchen.  They sell 1/8" Luann sheets.  Like plywood.  Put it down on top of the messed up floor and screw it down.  This is also the time to eliminate any squeaks in the floor.  Rescrew the subfloor tight to the joists. You should be able to see the nail or screw heads when you get the tile up.  This will give you a nice clean surface for the new tiles.  You could also level it off with shims if you have any dips.



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hitekredneck13

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2013, 02:58:23 PM »
Gentlemen, Gentlemen Thank you all for your time and advise. Sorry I haven't replied sooner but we we're on the job. The floor is finished, and I'm tired, sore and could use a cold one but the damn thing is done. I can't even type more, because I'm using what time I have left to this weekend to sleep soak in the bath.

Thank again. If I can get to it - before and after pictures to follow.

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2013, 07:50:15 PM »
Gentlemen, Gentlemen Thank you all for your time and advise. Sorry I haven't replied sooner but we we're on the job. The floor is finished, and I'm tired, sore and could use a cold one but the damn thing is done. I can't even type more, because I'm using what time I have left to this weekend to sleep soak in the bath.

Thank again. If I can get to it - before and after pictures to follow.

That is great!  I would love to see some pics of it.  I'm sure you did a great job.

Just out of curiosity, what did you use to complete the job m

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hitekredneck13

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2013, 01:43:46 PM »
Late, yes I know. Here they are regardless.

I still have 2 rooms I want to get done within the next few weeks but here's what we did last weekend. No more tile in the other 2 rooms, just carpet.







Offline z_randy

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2013, 02:32:12 PM »
Nice job!



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hitekredneck13

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2013, 02:37:04 PM »
Thanks

ThatDarnedDad

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Re: Flooring advice....
« Reply #12 on: December 01, 2013, 04:48:19 PM »
Looks Great! Very inspiring!

 



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