Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists? - Flooring - Contractor Talk

Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?

 
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:14 PM   #1
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Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


I'm installing Teragren Synergy Solid Strip 3 3/4 wide, and a full 1/2 Inch thick.

This flooring is baked in an autoclave, and is rated at a hardness of 3271; over twice as hard as red oak (1290) and North American maple (1450).

The manufacturer recommends the floor be nailed or glued down in their installation specifications. I am laying it on top of the original subfloor. The house was built in 1960

I understand that conventional wisdom dictates hardwood be laid perpendicular to the floor joists. Apparently this is a historical fragment from when hardwood floors were laid directly on top of the floor joists, before subfloors.

My customer has her heart set on laying the flooring in the galley kitchen perpendicular to the length of interior cabinets, and exterior wall, this would be parallel to the joists. The galley kitchen is 50 Inches wide.

Honestly, since subfloors, I don't think I've got better than a 50 / 50 chance of striking a nail directly into the top of the joists runing the flooring perpendicular over an existing subfloor in a remodel?

I know there's some validity about about distributing weight by running flooring perpendicular, and I certainly don't want to set myself up for failure, The original kitchen floor and new bamboo hardwood floor I'm installing will be supporting a refrigerator.

Can I get away with these 50" spans of bamboo flooring on top of the existing subfloor laying them parallel to the floor joists in the galley kitchen? If so is nailing or stapling preferable?

The flooring will extend beyond the end of the galley kitchen, and into the adjacent dining room, essentially forming an L

Can I get away with laying the new hardwood parallel to the joists in the dining room as well?

I could change the orientation of the flooring at the transition between the end of the galley kitchen threshold and into the Dining room if necessary, though I would prefer not to.

If it's just not feasible to lay the kitchen parallel to the joists, I'll revert to traditional installation perpendicular to the joists.

Thx in advance for your experience, and thoughts on the subject. I'd rather investigate first than be called back later.
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:33 PM   #2
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


The only way I would allow hardwood to be put down parallel with joists, is if blocking was installed in the bays every 2'

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Old 12-05-2012, 05:30 AM   #3
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


What is the ''existing'' sub floor/material ?

I must be missing something.
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:02 AM   #4
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Looks like 1X4 laid on the horizanlte, house is late 50"s
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:58 AM   #5
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Put 1/4" ply down....
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:50 AM   #6
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


You can lay wood any direction you want if you have the proper subfloor. You've never seen a kitchen with sheet vinyl? How much do you think that adds to the structure?
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Old 12-05-2012, 04:30 PM   #7
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


I'll second the blocking.
Just be aware that it may look wavy. A secondary subfloor or underlayment could cure the issue, but would create transition issues somewhere.
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:43 PM   #8
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


I have laid hardwood parallel with joists, but I had the joists double sheeted with 3/4" t&g advantech. Just throw a straight edge on the floor and look for low spots, if its flat then I say run with it.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:25 PM   #9
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


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I have laid hardwood parallel with joists, but I had the joists double sheeted with 3/4" t&g advantech. Just throw a straight edge on the floor and look for low spots, if its flat then I say run with it.
So this was new construction or did you remove the existing plywood and then install two sheets? Seems like a lot of work..
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:33 PM   #10
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


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I have laid hardwood parallel with joists, but I had the joists double sheeted with 3/4" t&g advantech. Just throw a straight edge on the floor and look for low spots, if its flat then I say run with it.
Just because it's flat doesn't mean it will not deflect when stepped on. That's why I would block it if the plywood can not be built up.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:34 PM   #11
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


New construction for that one.

I will be putting hardwood in my own house parallel to the joists in my dining room. Im installing in the kitchen, dining and hallway, and I want a 27' straight run instead of only going 12' wide.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:38 PM   #12
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


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Just because it's flat doesn't mean it will not deflect when stepped on. That's why I would block it if the plywood can not be built up.
It all depends on framing members, spacing and deflection calculations, I should have been clearer.
What is underneath for floor joists, spacing etc.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:45 PM   #13
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Quote:
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It all depends on framing members, spacing and deflection calculations, I should have been clearer.
What is underneath for floor joists, spacing etc.
True. The most common I see would be 16" OC joists with 3/4 subfloor over it. With that in mind, I wouldn't run hardwood parallel to it. Two layers of 3/4" subfloor I would be fine with. Even with 12" OC I would still want some sort of additional subfloor or blocking.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:58 PM   #14
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


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Just because it's flat doesn't mean it will not deflect when stepped on. That's why I would block it if the plywood can not be built up.
I'll do a thorough inspection of the subfloor to determine the material capabilities, then give her my conclusions...

I posted because I thought the material characteristics of this flooring might give me some wiggle room, but it's not sounding like it!

I don't lowball estimates, and I already factored in double the number of cuts laying the flooring perpendicular to the cabinets in this galley kitchen / parallel to the floor joists.

I don't see this customer paying me enough to worm through her 18" of crawlspace to block those floor joists. The estimate for that kind of labor would shock her into next Sunday.

I think I'll just provide a cautionary warning to beware of any installer who agrees to install it parallel to the joists.

Then the choice is her's...
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:49 PM   #15
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


We just did this in a kitchen where the floor joist run in two different directions. We blocked the joists ever two feet where the hardwood (2 1/4 x 3/4 white oak) ran parallel to them.

I don't think I would do it any other way. My floor guy mentioned to me one time that one of the reasons you run hardwood perpendicular to joists is for the sanding. Sanders are heavy and he said on weak floor where the hardwood is parallel you can feel the sander dipping in and out of the joists bays.

You also need to keep in mind that hardness of the wood doesn't directly result in strength of the wood for spanning joist. Especially if it only a 1/2" thick. I would do as others have suggested and put blocking in.
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:51 PM   #16
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Glue it....... Full bed of urethane adhesive... Then its 1 floor 11/4" thick.....
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:21 PM   #17
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Quote:
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You can lay wood any direction you want if you have the proper subfloor. You've never seen a kitchen with sheet vinyl? How much do you think that adds to the structure?
The reason you don't lay Harwood parallel to the joists is because the slightest deflection between the joists causes seperation in the joints and after a few years you will have gaps. You don't have this issue with vinyl.

It also has nothing directly to do with the weight/span factors. Assuming it was properly built, the subfloor alone will carry the weight with some deflection between joists.

To the OP:
Use blocking, and/or double the subfloor as others have suggested, and you won't have any issues. Sometimes doubling the subfloor will be an issue with doors and transitions to other floors, so usually blocking is the best answer.

Last edited by ryanshull; 12-05-2012 at 10:34 PM.
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Old 12-06-2012, 10:44 PM   #18
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Yes, you can do it. It will be gone, only thing I'm concerned with is the staples. Don't staple the bamboo. It will make little bumps all over the floor. It swells up when you staple it. I recommend nailing with cleats. There is a gun that shoots small cleats, a lot thinner than standard cleats. I was just using it today. If its strand, forget it! Over lay with 3/8 plywood and glue the floor down. Nail the 3/8 ply in about a six inch square pattern with one on the middle of each square. In other words, nail it well!!
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Old 12-07-2012, 02:42 AM   #19
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Quote:
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Yes, you can do it. It will be gone, only thing I'm concerned with is the staples. Don't staple the bamboo. It will make little bumps all over the floor. It swells up when you staple it. I recommend nailing with cleats. There is a gun that shoots small cleats, a lot thinner than standard cleats. I was just using it today. If its strand, forget it! Over lay with 3/8 plywood and glue the floor down. Nail the 3/8 ply in about a six inch square pattern with one on the middle of each square. In other words, nail it well!!
Customer has Spec'd Teragren MPL - a high grade Strand Bamboo Solid-Strip 12mm Flooring.

Manufacturer recommends the use of an 18 gauge cleat nailer and 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 cleat nails.

Can you clarify "If its strand, forget it!"
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Old 12-07-2012, 09:01 AM   #20
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Re: Hardwood Flooring In A Galley Kitchen Laid Parallel To The Floor Joists?


Strand bamboo is as hard as a rock! I doubt if that cleat nailer will work. We couldn't even get our trim gun to shoot through it. If you do get it to go through it makes a big nasty hole. Oh, and I got a tip for you, stand it up on your mitre saw. Put it to back of fence just like a piece of base board. It will not cut laying down.

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