Particle board nailed and glued over hardwood

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Old 08-17-14, 09:35 AM
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Particle board nailed and glued over hardwood

Hello all,

I'm new to the forum, so please correct me if I'm not doing this right.

I recently bought a 1903 house and am having the central air installed, electrical upgraded from knob and tube, and plumbing issues resolved professionally. However, I'm trying to do as much as I can myself. I've started pulling up carpet, and thankfully there's hardwood in the dining room. However, in the living room there is particle board nailed (flat-head nails sunk into the particle board and spaced about a foot apart along periphery of particle board sections) and glued to hardwood. I'm a little wary of using my various pry bars and hammer because I don't want to gouge the wood underneath, but I'm terrified of using the various saws I've read about online. Is it possible to wet the particle board and soften it up and deal with it that way?

Also, there is particle board over I-don't-know-what on a walled-off area of an enclosed back porch that I plan to use as a laundry/plant room. I had hoped I could just lay ceramic or vinyl tile or even linoleum over the particle board, but after reading various articles on-line that doesn't seem like a good idea. Is it possible if I put a lacquer or something on the particle board? I am not equipped to put down a plywood subfloor myself. Or should I try to take up that floor too and see what's under there?

Thank you so much for any help you can provide,

Krisanne
 
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Old 08-17-14, 09:49 AM
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Welcome to the forums Krisanne!

I don't know how feasible it is to remove the PB and not expect to damage the hardwood below it. The adhesive is the biggest issue. I'd set the depth on a skil saw to about a 1/4" less than the thickness of the PB and make all kinds of cuts on the PB. That should make it easier to remove the PB

The amount of water it would take to destroy the PB would likely also damage the hardwood. I doubt any solvent would help much either.
 
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Old 08-17-14, 04:29 PM
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Most likely the particle board is over a hardwood, but not a finish grade hardwood. The particle board needs to be removed prior to any other flooring install other than carpet. We are still trying to track down the person that invented particle board for use in flooring, I have a vat of tar and some feathers waiting on him.

The particle board also should have a layer of tar paper or roofing felt between it and the hardwood planks for noise reduction. If you use a skill saw as Marksr suggests and leave a small bit of the particleboard, you can use a prybar to finish and snap the remaining wood. Experiment to find which depth works best. I like to cut right next to the row of nails and then pry up the section without nails. It works as a lever against the nails on the opposite side as you tilt it up and makes short order of the tear out.
 
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Old 08-18-14, 05:35 AM
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There's just no way that flooring below the particle board is going to be able to be refinished, not worth even trying to save it.
It's going to be full of rusted nail holes and blow outs from removing the nails.
 
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Old 08-23-14, 09:24 AM
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Particle board nailed and glued over hardwood

Thank you, all, for your replies.

I'm sorry I haven't responded sooner -- for some reason I was expecting to be notified automatically in my e-mail if anyone answered my post and so I haven't checked back here until just now.

Fortunately, I was wrong about the particle board being glued -- it was nailed only. I must have misunderstood the seller of the house.

I did get up the particle board! Tedious but doable. As you pointed out, I damaged the hardwood below in getting started, but also as you pointed out, it did not appear to be a finish-grade hardwood. I should mention that I started in a room that originally was part of the enclosed back porch and will be the laundry room. The PB there apparently had suffered some water damage at some point so was relatively easy to lift with my wonder bar and break up. There was no layer of roofing paper or anything else between the particle board and the weathered hardwood, but I'm not surprised. The things "they" did to this old house are appalling, and I'm learning that everything was done in the worst and cheapest way possible.

So now my plan for the laundry room is to put down some cement backerboard, and then tile. It sounds so easy!

As for the PB in the living room and office, I may leave it and carpet over it (after I get up all the sculptured shag -- is such a thing possible?). I can't imagine why they would have put down PB over hardwood unless the wood was damaged, as were a couple boards in the laundry room. Anyway, I'm still trying to make up my mind on that one.

Again, thank you all for your replies, and I apologize for my tardiness. I truly appreciate the wealth of knowledge this forum represents!
 
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Old 08-23-14, 09:29 AM
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Glad it worked out for you

If you 'subscribe' to a thread, you'll get an e-mail notifying you whenever there is a reply made to that thread.
 
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Old 09-01-14, 10:46 AM
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Thanks, marksr. I found the "subscriptions" info on the FAQs list, so will do that next time! And I'm sure there will be a next time...

Best,
Krisanne
 
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