Purchase, Preparation, and Help

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  #1  
Old 10-09-00, 06:59 AM
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I'm looking for help in converting a family room (10x14) that has carpet in it currently, to hardwood flooring.

Some details about the room. It has one exterior wall with sliding glass doors to the backyard. It has a gas log fireplace that provides limited heat. It is a main room for family gatherings, tv, etc (it gets used a lot).

Preparation...Do i need to lay a subfloor over the old sub floor, do i need a vapour barrier, etc.
Purchasing... What types of flooring are available in my area. (southern ontario, canada). What are the pros and cons of the different types.
What costs should I expect.
What pitfalls should I watch out for.
Would I be better off hiring a contractor to do the job if the flooring is really expesive?
Is there a web site i can go to to find answers to these questions.

I realize these are a lot of questions, but this is my first time.

Thanks in advance for your help.
steve
 
  #2  
Old 10-09-00, 08:39 AM
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Please provide two more pieces of information: (1) What is the existing subfloor made of? (2) What's under the floor (e.g., crawl space, slab, finished basement, unfinished basement)?
 
  #3  
Old 10-09-00, 01:02 PM
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Aside from what John has mentioned there are several websites that can help. nofma.org, woodfloorsonline.com, floorboards.com, and hometime.com can give you a great headstart.
 
  #4  
Old 10-10-00, 04:04 PM
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John & Ken: Thanks for your quick responses.

John: Underneath the carpeting i'm insure but i suspect it has a sub floor maybe 1/4" or 3/8" thick looks like some type of rough finish that doesn't seem very good quality (sorry thats the best i can describe it). That's judging from what was in the kitchen floor when it was redone about a year ago by contractors.

Underneath the room is an unfinished basement.

Ken: I haven't looked at the web sites that you mentioned but will later on today (10-10)

Steve
 
  #5  
Old 10-10-00, 06:00 PM
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If you have a 3/4" subfloor made of plywood or OSB (looks like a bunch of wood scraps glued together), then you can nail down a hardwood floor. If you have less, you may need to add something to get it up to at least 3/4" (but I'd guess you already have 3/4" -- drill a hole in it if you have to to measure it).

The normal recommendation would be to use 15# roofing felt under the hardwood.

Educate yourself about what's available: Major categories are laminate (Pergo, et al.), engineered wood, and solid hardwood. These are listed in order of increasing thickness, if that's a consideration. If you're doing it yourself, you can spend anywhere from about $3 per square foot (although I wouldn't personally), to $15 per square foot (I wouldn't do that either). You have choices of nail-down, glue-down, or floating (pieces edge-glued to each other).

Hardwood is not trivial to install, but it's not rocket science either. You'll have to judge your own skill at this type of thing. And study the installation a lot before starting.

If you have it professionally installed, plan to spend at least as much for the installation as the material.

I've seen Ken's posts in other forums, and I know he knows his stuff. The forums he gave you are good, but you can also try hoskinghardwood.com, floorsearch.com, and several others I can't remember. Spend a few hours or days at these sites, and you'll know everything you need.

Good luck. Try to separate the wheat from the chaff. You're about to enter a world with a wide diversity of opinion, and to make a choice many people find very hard.
 
  #6  
Old 10-11-00, 05:12 AM
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John:

Floorboards.com is also hoskinghardwood.com...just easier to remember for most.
 
 

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