Ceramic tile over hardwoods?

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Old 10-23-08, 05:17 AM
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Ceramic tile over hardwoods?

My bathroom floor had vinyl tiles which I removed. Underneath I found oak hardwood flooring. The hardwoods are surprisingly in excellent condition. Can I install ceramic tile over this hardwood floor? If not, what do I have to do to install the tile? Thanx.
 
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Old 10-23-08, 06:43 AM
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You will need to overlay the solid wood flooring, with plywood no less then 3/8", then you will need an uncoupling membrane, or a cement panel. Membranes are thin and add an 1/8 or less to the installation height, like Schluter Ditra, compared to the 1/4" or greater height by using CBU, like Hardie backer board or Durock.
 
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Old 10-23-08, 02:32 PM
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You may be ok with covering the hardwood with plywood, but there is no guarantee. It really would be best to remove the hardwood. Hardwood floors have a lot of movement depending on seasons and moisture conditions. If theres anything tile doesnt like its movement. Removing the hardwood will also assure that you dont wind up bumping your head on the ceiling after you add the plywood, cement board and tile. Alright just kidding about that.

Remove the hardwood and let us know what you have underneath.
 
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Old 10-23-08, 03:26 PM
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I'll agree with Johnny on this. Johnny knows his stuff.
 
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Old 11-18-08, 03:23 PM
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If I may hijack kpg's thread here to ask if the uncoupling membrane is really necessary if 1/2 or 3/4" plywood is used to replace the old flooring we have?

I'm just trying to save some effort and expense in an old house where we already have a good deal on the ceramic tile and getting it done with the least trouble is the order of the day.

Is plywood stable enough for, say, 10 years?
 
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Old 11-18-08, 06:05 PM
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You are playing roulette when tiling over plywood. Plywood expands and contracts and that could cause tile/grout to crack. It could last a month or it could last years. Do you want to gamble with it?
 
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Old 11-24-08, 08:44 AM
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ken

Setting tile directly to a single layer of plywood is not an acceptable method, and will fail shortly. If you already have plywood underlayment of 5/8" or thicker, you may be ok to add cement board or an isolation membrane over the existing plywood. If you are wanting to set tile to plywood, the requirement is 2 layers totalling 1 1/4" in thickness. There are other requirements as well. For a diyer, setting tile directly to plywood tends to have a higher failure rate as there are other requirements that diyers tend not to be aware of.
 
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