07:19PM | 02/21/05
Member Since: 12/25/02
18 lifetime posts
Haven't posted in awhile, but got going on a project and need some expert insight....isn K2 still out there? He always had such good ideas!!!!

The entry way and kitchen floor of the house I bought a year ago was covered in indoor/outdoor (aka utility) carpet.

I finally got sick of it and tore it all up.

Underneath I found a combination of circa 1980 sheet vinyl (mostly in decent shape), but with a very large (6' x 10 ') cement patch in the middle . The cement appears to be laid over the vinyl flooring, at least along the edges of the patch. On one edge of the cement patch the vinyl has formed a significant crack where the floor has settled, so the cement is cracking and breaking away there as well.

All this has resulted in a very uneven floor (though I don't have a level floor in this house, so that is not unusual)

(Guess I know why someome put down carpet in the kitchen!!!)

So I am pondering how to fix this mess? Lay down 1/4 plywood over all of it and tile over that? Use some sortof self-leveling product over the vinyl tile and weird conrete patch??

Jack hammer the whole mess up?

Install carpet again?

What to do??

Thanks for your insight!!

Tracy in Dolores, CO

What to do?


04:08AM | 02/25/05
Member Since: 11/07/04
83 lifetime posts
I think you might get away with a 1/4 inch plywood and vinyl on that but that's a crap shoot. Probably the best thing is to tear it all up and start over. If you want ceramic tile remember you need cement backerboard underneath it. Any uneven flooring under ceramic tile is just going to lead to cracked tiles.


06:01AM | 02/25/05
Member Since: 06/06/03
1250 lifetime posts
Hey there Tracy!, long time!

Yes, I'm still around! I find it "usually" a relaxing break. There are times, however! :)

I don't know when was your last post, but good ol' Plumber Tom talked me into becoming moderator. I didn't have any building trade skills, so I got "Misc" forum. Poor Tom is no longer with us, unfortunately; we sure miss him around here. The Plumbing Forum is now dedicated to his memory.

Anyway, I am not real familiar with dealing with heaving+cracking concrete like you describe. I would question whether anything you put on top of it would hold together very well, however. (But of course, as you know, I'll still give you my ideas! :)

I should mention that I'm not a big fan of vinyl tile. I mean, you see displays of it and it's even shifting and falling off those! I guess unless it's a pro install--like at supermarkets--those tiles never seem to budge, even with all the traffic, buffing, etc.

So, with all those caveats, here's an idea. Especially if the concrete is pretty stable. Actually, not all that different from Timbear's. It is possible that plywood might work after all. To attach to concrete, I'd use both a power nailer (one with the charged cartriges--like 22-caliber bullets) and some sort of adhesive (look them over at the big-box store and try to find the best for the application).

As for those nailers, they're not expensive ($30-40) and surprisingly easy to work with.

I'd probably use heavier plywood than 1/4" if you can. Plywood is pretty strong stuff and this idea might just work.

As for cement backerboard and ceramic tile, this might also work but given the nature of what's beneath, I'd be tempted to put plywood down first. This would build up the floor height, maybe too much. And cracking/grout cracks might still happen down the road.

But you know, I think just about anything would beat utility carpet in there! :)

Please post back and let us know if any of this seems practical, or what you think might be pitfalls, etc.


-k2 in CO

Moderator, Miscellaneous Forum


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