Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep

 
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Old 03-16-2006, 07:32 PM   #1
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Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


I've been doing smaller jobs until recently, and just got a whole house job to put in ~2000 sq ft of prefinished 3/4" oak, and ~600 sq ft of tile. Owner wants no transitions or tees, just the tile and wood to butt up nicely.

I pulled the carpets (nastiest carpets ever, short of Katrina soaked) and started on the vinyl. I need to finish that, and pull the little bit of wood as well. The subfloor appears to be 3/4" OSB (I've heard it called "chip board", but maybe I'm confusing things) throughout. In the baths and kitchen, there is 1/4" plywood overlay (where the vinyl was, I suppose to better bring the level to match the carpet.

Of course, after reading many of the posts here, I am rethinking my strategy, so I wanted to lay it out and see what you all think:

i) Lay wood over felt (or AquaBar, if I can find it again) on present subfloor

ii) Thinset and screw 1/4" CB over the current 1/4" ply over subfloor.

This *should* put the wood and tile and nearly the same height.

Thanks for reading.

-Jimi

P.S. First thread started... been lurking for a few months, and finally joined. I recently relocated, so it's a bit like starting over (finding dealers, distributors, etc).
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Old 03-16-2006, 08:21 PM   #2
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Sorry, I don't install hardwood, so can't be of much help there, someone else will chime in I'm sure.

As for the tile, NEVER install it over 1/4" wood, doesn't matter where it is, it can't be in the mix, so remove that first, 3/4" OSB or Plywood is minimum for a subfloor before a CBU or membrane, I like more wood, say 1/2" plywood.

What is your joist size, spacing and length of them unsupported?, this would also help in determining if that floor meets specs for tile, are you planning on Ceramic or Stone?

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Old 03-16-2006, 08:26 PM   #3
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


They will still need some sort of transition to tile.
wood expands and contracts, so if it is butted up to tile, are they o.k. with gaps?
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Old 03-16-2006, 08:32 PM   #4
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


I have always just put a roundover edge on the last peice of hardwood before tile then stained and finished the edge to match. If you lay your tile on 1/4 inch hardibacker the tile will be just short of the same height but have never had any complaints. Leave a gap between tile and hardwood to match your gap between tile then fill that gap only with color match caulk to match your grout. This also helps with expansion and will not crack out like grout. Hope this helps.

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Old 03-16-2006, 09:52 PM   #5
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Hey Floorcraft , I have had succsess with a soft loint of tech caulking that matches the grout up to wood
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Old 03-16-2006, 10:30 PM   #6
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


As far as the tile I always tear out everything down to the subfloor and then use 1/2" cement board. Usually puts the tile within 1/8" of hardwood and gives a very solid floor. If the subfloor under the tile is pieced and soft it will crack at the grout lines. Makes for a very unhappy customer.
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Old 03-17-2006, 12:14 AM   #7
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


In regards to the transition, I would run one strip of hardwood the long way against the tile transition and install a Schluter strip at the edge of the tile, you will end up with a 1/16 reveal, all my clients love this method, they all comment how finished it looks. There will be no cracking of grout and no expansion issues since the long piece of hardwood will expand and contract evenly and consistantly allong the transition strip.



It will look something like the picture except you will have wood in place of the carpet.
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Old 03-17-2006, 12:29 AM   #8
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


just leave you a grout line width between the tile and wood and where you get your grout you can buy some caulk that matches the grout, sanded too, that way it will expand and contract without cracking your tile. It will look jsut like the tile grout.
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Old 03-17-2006, 07:31 AM   #9
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Quote:
Originally Posted by adams,b
just leave you a grout line width between the tile and wood and where you get your grout you can buy some caulk that matches the grout, sanded too, that way it will expand and contract without cracking your tile. It will look jsut like the tile grout.
Ain't that what I said.

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Old 03-17-2006, 07:39 AM   #10
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Ditto fellas, good answers even with the echo.

Don't forget to make sure the sub layment is equal or no less than 1 1/4" before tile.

Also I agree with R&G, better check joist size and spacing.

Bob
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Old 03-17-2006, 10:43 AM   #11
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


I would caution everybody who recommends color matched caulk for this problem. The expansion characteristics of tile caulk are rather limited. Within a year you are going to see a very distinct pull back separation line everywhere the caulk touches the hard wood, sure it's going to look really nice the day you finish the job, but it won't look that way forever. But to each their own.
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Old 03-17-2006, 11:44 AM   #12
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


I have not used this product but saw it on a job this week. I talked to the tile guy who says its better and easeir then ply underlayments. You can call the manufacture and give them your floor conditions and they will give you specific install instructions for your floor. http://www.tileprotection.com
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Old 03-17-2006, 04:05 PM   #13
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Finley
I would caution everybody who recommends color matched caulk for this problem. The expansion characteristics of tile caulk are rather limited. Within a year you are going to see a very distinct pull back separation line everywhere the caulk touches the hard wood, sure it's going to look really nice the day you finish the job, but it won't look that way forever. But to each their own.


That may be true, but it is caulking, it can be touched up.
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Old 03-17-2006, 06:33 PM   #14
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Quote:
Originally Posted by magnum
I have not used this product but saw it on a job this week. I talked to the tile guy who says its better and easeir then ply underlayments. You can call the manufacture and give them your floor conditions and they will give you specific install instructions for your floor. http://www.tileprotection.com
It's called Ditra and isn't easier than plywood, it's used instead of a CBU, you still need the plywood and the floor to meet specs for tile or stone.

It's an isolation membrane, and a very good one.
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Old 03-17-2006, 10:20 PM   #15
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


You can get siloconized sanded caulk to match the grout. When you order the grout, just order the caulk in the same color. As far as prefinished hardwood up to tile, keep the tile just a 1/16th higher than the floor, caulk the joint and your good.
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Old 03-18-2006, 10:57 AM   #16
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Costello
That may be true, but it is caulking, it can be touched up.
That's true, but your reputation can't be, and I shoot for 0 call backs. Especially since most people will never call you back over something like this, but they end up having to live with it. That's not for me.
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Old 03-19-2006, 05:43 PM   #17
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


I think all us good guys shoot for that.

And to be totally honest with you I dont install ceramic. But I do install wood and I have gone through great lenths for a customer to get a floor at the right level so the wood and tile are flush. They like the no transition and are willing to do the maintenence needed for a soft joint.

Just to be clear, it wouldnt be my first choice but I will give my customers what they want if at all possible.
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Old 03-19-2006, 07:28 PM   #18
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Costello
They like the no transition
I don't think you are clear on what is being discussed. A caulk line or a grout line between the tile and the hardwood is a transition. A Schluter strip between them is a transition also, but it's a permanent one with no maintenance ever. Not sure if we were both on the same page so just wanted to clarify and make sure you didn't think we were talking about something for bridging two different levels of flooring.
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Old 03-20-2006, 06:04 AM   #19
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


I was clear. Like I said I dont do ceramic so I would never have an occasion to use Schluter. That being said I think it should be used on every tile job but alot of guys dont use it.


My point was having a flush transition between the wood and the tile and using a soft joint between the two.


Is it the best option? IMHO no, but sometmes you just cannot talk a customer out of it . In those specific cases a soft joint is the best option.
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Old 03-20-2006, 08:29 AM   #20
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Re: Wood-to-tile -- Sub And Prep


Mike F. & Mike C.

I think your both on the right track, just talking about two different situations.

If the hardwood is in already (or not) a Schulter strip is the way I go. Permanent, w/ no issues, never had a call back.

If the tile is already down and the wood has to go in, then a soft joint is appropriate IMHO, if bridging the transition is not called for. I have had call backs on the soft joint outside of a year later. Quick fix, and the client expected this to occur because I already planted the seed during the build.

I never grout the transition for reasons already presented.

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