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fab807

02:33PM | 11/07/09
Member Since: 11/06/09
4 lifetime posts
Bvflooring
Need assistance! Several contractors have informed me that when I am replacing ceramic tile on a wooden subflooring (second story) in 2 bathrooms, I will need cement board before the applying the adhesive.

However, one contractor informed me that there is a "new" product out, he called it a "plastic," (could it be polyurethane or is it something totally different??)that is now the rage over cement board. I am clueless as to which is the better choice going into 2 wet (bathroom) areas on a wood subfloor 2nd floor areas. Your thoughts???

Tileguybob

05:27PM | 11/09/09
Member Since: 07/03/05
283 lifetime posts
The "plastic" he is referring to is a sheet membrane called DITRA made by a company called Schluter.. It is good stuff and for most applications works as well as any cement board. It may price out a little more expensive but well worth the extra few dollars. With either Ditra or cement boards, a stable subfloor is needed. Neither will add any structural strength. Optional products also made by Schluter can be added to the Ditrato make it waterproof and offer protection to the wood subfloor that cement boards cannot. Cement boards are water resistant, they wont break down or decompose if left sitting in water for extended periods, but they are not waterproof, they will allow water to pass through the body of the board. A paint on waterproofing membrane applied over the boards will make them waterproof, however.

fab807

05:50PM | 11/12/09
Member Since: 11/06/09
4 lifetime posts
This information you provided was (or will be) extremely helpful! What I forgot to say in my first question, that we are going to "replace" pre-existing carpet from two (2)second floor bathrooms. Obviously, the subfloor in each bathroom is wood. Once the old carpet has been removed, then am I correct in assuming your answer was BOTH the cement board AND the "plastic" barrier need to be applied since the shifting of the house over the years may cause the tile to crack if not properly floated.

Thanks again for your response!

Tileguybob

03:40PM | 11/13/09
Member Since: 07/03/05
283 lifetime posts
No, you only need one or the other. Tile cracks because of subfloor movement, called deflection. Vinyl, carpet and hardwood flooring all can move with the subfloor and will not split, ceramic is a hard body and has no give. The Ditra eats up some of that movement. Cement board will not and will transfer the movement up to the tile which will be shown as a loose or cracked tile, and/or grout. Cement board can only be used over an already stable subfloor, it offers NO stuctural strength to the floor, like plywood does, but it is a great surface for the tile to bond to. In general terms, a stable subfloor would be 3/4" tongue and groove plywood or OSB, not particle board, set over appropriate sized floor joists 16" OC. But that is a minimum, its like saying you passed the test with a 70. Ideally I like to see 1 & 1/8" of plywood, then the cement board set in a bed of thinset and anchored to the floor with nails or screws.

fab807

04:00PM | 11/20/09
Member Since: 11/06/09
4 lifetime posts
Tileguybob! Again, thank you for your kind and much honest responses. I only wish I could hire somone like you to do my small to medium job! (You don't happen to live in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area????? Or know someone who does with your expertise, who might want to this????) Again, much thanks!! Look forward to your response.

Tileguybob

04:43PM | 11/20/09
Member Since: 07/03/05
283 lifetime posts
Sorry, I'm up in New Jersey. And to boot I'm an Eagles fan so i doubt I would fit in well down in Dallas.

I dont know of anybody down there but you might be able to get a reference from the National Tile Contractors Association of which I am a member. Go to www.tile-assn.com and use the member locator

fab807

05:39AM | 11/22/09
Member Since: 11/06/09
4 lifetime posts
Tileguybob! When it comes to business, I wear NO NFL-AFL jerseys, with the only exception of I do MATCH the tile installers jersey for that day, or until the work is completed/finished! :-)

I WILL check that link out. Again, many thanks! And when you can -- get away from that "cold" weather stuff in Jersey!! :-)

Frank
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