Pulling up old flooring


Old 04-05-05, 09:38 AM
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Pulling up old flooring

I'm looking to replace a bad ceramic tiling job in the second floor bathroom of a 6 years old frame home. I'm unclear what I should expect to see under the floor tiles.

"Should" the tiles have been laid on cement board on top of plywood?

If so, should I plan on replacing this cement board after the tiles are removed? I've read that the cement board should be drilled to the pilewood every 8", so this sounds like a heck of a job to remove it. Can the cement board be reused, or is that unlikely given the need for a clean, flat surface?

I'm trying to get some idea what to look for before I get started and retile. Thanks!
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Old 04-06-05, 04:58 PM
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If the cement board was set with unmodified thinset and nailed down it will ultimately come up cleanly, in small pieces, but it will come up. A demolition hammer with a 2 " spade will help a lot. You can rent one for the day for about $50.
Some tile are set directly to plywood which is risky at best unless you really know what you are doing (like Tilebri or me ) Take up the tile and let us know what is under it and what condition the subfloor is in. We can help you along better once that part is figured out.
Old 04-07-05, 08:56 AM
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Thanks for the reply. I wasn't sure if this thread would get revisited so I PM'd this as well...

It looks like the tile is laid directly on a single sheet of plywood. Is it better to replace the plywood? Or can I get away with sanding or scraping away enough of the old adhesive to tile overtop whatever bit remains? This would seem like a pretty common issue and I'm surprised I can't find a thread on it.

thanks again.
Old 04-07-05, 09:50 AM
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Common problem only with half a**ed tract home builders, and now you can understand why there is a problem. Use the suggestions Bob recomended and then grind the floor, ou can rent one with a dust shield that hooks to a shop vac. Make sure the shop vac has a hepa filter to get the really small stuff (silica). At a minimum, you will need backer set in thinset over the old floor. First layer will not need to be perfectly clean, but you don't want any spots that can break up when you screw the backer into it causing bumps under your backer. Best if you get it nice and smooth, though and add a second layer of 3/8 to 1/2" bcx ply first then backer set into unmodifed thinset. FLange height issues can be solved with falnge extenders and/or double wax rings.
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