1/2" plywood subfloor with 1/2" particle board

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  #1  
Old 03-26-12, 06:22 AM
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1/2" plywood subfloor with 1/2" particle board

Hi!

So yesterday we started taking the flooring out of our bathroom because the shower and toilet had both leaked pretty bad over the years and ruined the wood below those fixtures. When we started ripping up the flooring though, we discovered that we have 1/2" plywood under a 1/2" layer of particle board. What a mess! Under the toilet and shower both layers need replaced, but elsewhere the plywood is in great shape, so what do we go back with? The thickest plywood I've seen locally is 3/4", but that will not meet up to the places that we are leaving so that we can match up at floor joists. Do we go back with particle board (please say it isn't so!) or should we use something beefier? If it matters, we're planning to install vinyl.

Also, I'm kind of excited about replacing this floor since it shouldn't squeak when we get done, so what do I put between the layers? I want to be considerate, so something that will not be too hard to remove should it need to be done by either us or someone else in the future.
 
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Old 03-26-12, 09:24 AM
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If you are only replace some of the particle board, you'll need plywood, osb or particle board that is the same thickness. If particle board is the only option, I think I'd remove the rest of the PB and then install a continuous layer of 5/8" or 3/4" plywood or osb.

If you just replace what's missing, you'd probably need to cover it all with 1/4" ply so the vinyl has a smooth uninterrupted base for the vinyl.
 
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Old 03-26-12, 10:02 AM
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Thanks Mark!

We mostly were planning to leave as much of the plywood as possible because the cabinets are staying anyway (we're cutting right up to them wherever possible) and so we're trying to work with the floor joists so that there aren't pieces just hanging out all willy-nilly.

I was concerned about the strength of the 1/2" plywood. Will it be strong enough with the additional 1/4" to hold up normal bathroom traffic and fixtures? I mean, I guess we just pulled out a cast iron tub that was sitting ONLY on the 1/2" plywood (no particleboard), but.......
 
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Old 03-26-12, 02:52 PM
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1/2" is really too thin for a subfloor and the 1/4" won't add any real strength. I'd add at least a layer of 3/8" plywood. If you stagger the joints maybe you can get by without the 1/4"..... but I don't know enough about installing vinyl to say for sure
 
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Old 03-26-12, 07:09 PM
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You could put 3/4 " sturdifloor sheeting down for a base, attached with nails or screws and put any smooth sided 1/4" smooth sided plywood down to match up to your original floor. As long as you have adequate support where the two meet, you should not have any trouble. If there is a height difference, you can trowel a floor leveler on to make it level, making vinyl installation easier. Also, attach the 1/4" plywood with 1" staples every six to eight inches to avoid squeaks, a little baby powder between sheets also helps, really.
 
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Old 04-14-12, 03:19 PM
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Nice one about the baby powder! Not heard of that before.
 
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