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Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 10th 09, 01:21 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 12
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?

HI group,

I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it. There is no subfloor, however. My question is: could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?

This is for two rooms on the ground floor that is over a basement.
Currently we hear the boiler and see through cracks, so I'd like
something very sound and as sealed as possible. Not married to any
particular type of wood so if one type is better I'd love to hear
about that too.

Thanks in advance to this very generous group!
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  #2  
Old February 10th 09, 01:39 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 3,479
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do Ineed one?

On 2/9/2009 5:21 PM Dairy Godmother spake thus:

I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it.


What do you mean, "as many timea as it can take"? Are the floorboards
too thin? Sounds as if you just don't want that old floor anymore.
Floorboards can "take" an arbitrary number of refinishings. They don't
wear out.

There is no subfloor, however.


Are you sure? You say you can see through cracks in the floor, so this
may be the case, but it sounds weird. Houses have been built with
subfloors since forever.

My question is: could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?


If the existing floor is structurally sound and reasonably flat, then
you can use it as a subfloor.

Or just a new floor without a subfloor?


Nope.


--
Personally, I like Vista, but I probably won't use it. I like it
because it generates considerable business for me in consulting and
upgrades. As long as there is hardware and software out there that
doesn't work, I stay in business. Incidentally, my company motto is
"If this stuff worked, you wouldn't need me".

- lifted from sci.electronics.repair
  #3  
Old February 10th 09, 03:16 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 11,580
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I need one?

Dairy Godmother wrote:
HI group,

I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it. There is no subfloor, however. My question is: could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?

This is for two rooms on the ground floor that is over a basement.
Currently we hear the boiler and see through cracks, so I'd like
something very sound and as sealed as possible. Not married to any
particular type of wood so if one type is better I'd love to hear
about that too.

Thanks in advance to this very generous group!


Consider laminate flooring with a sound dampening underlayment. It can be
easily installed over your existing floor. Squeaks and "mushiness" should,
of course, be dealt with while you can access both sides of the floor.


  #4  
Old February 10th 09, 04:31 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 11
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I need one?


"David Nebenzahl" wrote in message
.com...
What do you mean, "as many timea as it can take"? Are the floorboards too
thin? Sounds as if you just don't want that old floor anymore. Floorboards
can "take" an arbitrary number of refinishings. They don't wear out.

There is no subfloor, however.


Are you sure? You say you can see through cracks in the floor, so this may
be the case, but it sounds weird. Houses have been built with subfloors
since forever.


My house was built in 1916 and there is no subfloors.

We got to the point where we thought another sanding and we'd be in the
basement. Probably wouldn't happen, but that floor had way too many bad
spots. I would never be able to run and skate across in my socks.

We just put a new wood floor on top of it and all's been well so far.

BR


  #5  
Old February 10th 09, 04:37 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 5,158
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do Ineed one?

HeyBub wrote:
Dairy Godmother wrote:
HI group,

I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it. There is no subfloor, however. My question is: could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?

This is for two rooms on the ground floor that is over a basement.
Currently we hear the boiler and see through cracks, so I'd like
something very sound and as sealed as possible. Not married to any
particular type of wood so if one type is better I'd love to hear
about that too.

Thanks in advance to this very generous group!


Consider laminate flooring with a sound dampening underlayment. It can be
easily installed over your existing floor. Squeaks and "mushiness" should,
of course, be dealt with while you can access both sides of the floor.


Laminate is UGLY, doubly so in an older house- it just looks WRONG.
Can't say for sure without seeing it, but old floor would probably work
fine as a subfloor. Fix the squeaks and any mushy spots, and shop around
for a deal on real hardwood, preferably something narrow to fit with the
age of the house. I find it hard to believe there is NO subfloor, unless
the place had an abandoned remodel. House of that vintage would usually
have 1x4 or 1x6 plank, nailed at 45 degrees to the joists. OP, where are
you? There were different practices in different areas.

--
aem sends...
  #6  
Old February 10th 09, 08:37 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 930
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?

On Feb 9, 8:37*pm, aemeijers wrote:
HeyBub wrote:
Dairy Godmother wrote:
HI group,


I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. *They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). *Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it. *There is no subfloor, however. *My question is: *could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?


This is for two rooms on the ground floor that is over a basement.
Currently we hear the boiler and see through cracks, so I'd like
something very sound and as sealed as possible. *Not married to any
particular type of wood so if one type is better I'd love to hear
about that too.


Thanks in advance to this very generous group!


Consider laminate flooring with a sound dampening underlayment. It can be
easily installed over your existing floor. Squeaks and "mushiness" should,
of course, be dealt with while you can access both sides of the floor.


Laminate is UGLY, doubly so in an older house- it just looks WRONG.
Can't say for sure without seeing it, but old floor would probably work
fine as a subfloor. Fix the squeaks and any mushy spots, and shop around
for a deal on real hardwood, preferably something narrow to fit with the
age of the house. I find it hard to believe there is NO subfloor, unless
the place had an abandoned remodel. House of that vintage would usually
have 1x4 or 1x6 plank, nailed at 45 degrees to the joists. OP, where are
you? There were different practices in different areas.

--
aem sends...


Most old houses with oak floors have subfloors; usually 1x4 at 45
deg.........

but all vintages of houses were built w/o subfloors.

My house (1930) has oak flooring & 1x4 subfloor but my next door
neighbor's house (1952) has oak flooring and NO subfloor.
It is currently owned by the son of the original owner...so no
remodel.

One issue with using the old floor as the subfloor.....not at 45 to
the joists (which is a minor nit)

OP- depends on your budget.....

either use the old floor as a subfloor or

remove old floor, add new subfloor (plywood not OSB) and install a
real wood floor.....laminate sucks.

A thicker (3/4") solid wood floor would most likely be way cheaper
than the second option of adding a subfloor.

You bought a period, "charm" home, don't put in laminate and ruin the
look.

A new floor w/o a subfloor would be a bad idea, why tear up the old
would floor & not replace it...either use it as a subfloor or tear up
and install a proper subfloor.

I wonder how the floor installer handled the wall / floor interface
condition? Wood floor goes under wall sills?


cheers
Bob

  #7  
Old February 10th 09, 08:51 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 333
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?

On Feb 9, 8:21�pm, Dairy Godmother wrote:
HI group,

I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. �They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). �Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it. �There is no subfloor, however. �My question is: �could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?

This is for two rooms on the ground floor that is over a basement.
Currently we hear the boiler and see through cracks, so I'd like
something very sound and as sealed as possible. �Not married to any
particular type of wood so if one type is better I'd love to hear
about that too.

Thanks in advance to this very generous group!


You have a miriad of choices if your floor joists are sturdy. if they
aren't, you MUST shore them up to the point they ARE sturdy by either
adding more joists nest to them, or a beam under them.

Assuming your floor joists are sturdy, you can replace the boards that
are weak and mushy if you can get the proper height (thickness). Then
you can decide what floor covering you want.

Once you decide whether it is going to be carpet, laminate, tile or
whatever, then you can decide what is best for a sub-floor. When
deciding, take in consideration of the height of the thresholds and
the transitions you'll need to make.

Hank

  #8  
Old February 10th 09, 01:39 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 4,938
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?

On Feb 9, 7:21*pm, Dairy Godmother wrote:
HI group,

I bought a house built in 1925 which has oak floors. *They are not in
the best shape, with cracks and weak spots (funny the home inspection
didnt really call it out as a problem). *Additionally, it has been
refinished as many times as it can take so we are going to replace
it. *There is no subfloor, however. *My question is: *could you have
the new floor installed right on top of the old floor (making it
become the subfloor) or would you just have both installed brand new?
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?

This is for two rooms on the ground floor that is over a basement.
Currently we hear the boiler and see through cracks, so I'd like
something very sound and as sealed as possible. *Not married to any
particular type of wood so if one type is better I'd love to hear
about that too.

Thanks in advance to this very generous group!


Get a pro out to tell you if it has been resanded to many times a bid
a fix of issues. But it probably hasnt been sanded to thin. If joists
are weak, sister on another one, if a few planks are week I braced
mine underneath with plywood. Old floors were thick, mine are 3/4 oak
with no subfloor and can take many sandings. You can go over the old
one but you will save thousands by keeping what you have. A weak plank
may have a hidden knot underneath, so support it from underneath. A
good sanding and 3-6 coats, a few repairs, and it will be great.
  #9  
Old February 10th 09, 01:55 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 627
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?

On Feb 9, 8:21*pm, Dairy Godmother wrote:
Or just a new floor without a subfloor?


That'd work... Just stretch the carpet across the open joists. It'll
be fine.
  #10  
Old February 10th 09, 02:02 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 627
Default Want to replace wood floors but don't have a subfloor. Do I needone?

On Feb 10, 3:37*am, BobK207 wrote:
I wonder how the floor installer handled the wall / *floor interface
condition? * Wood floor goes under wall sills?


The builder laid down the floor boards over the open joists, then
built the walls on top just like any other construction of the time.
 




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