06:44AM | 01/25/03
Member Since: 01/24/03
2 lifetime posts
I recently purchased a house in Philadelphia. The previous owners installed plywood and carpet over the original pine(?) floors.

How can I find out the type of wood that is underneath it all? I pulled up some carpet and a piece of plywood. It looks as though the flooring underneath was once painted.

Is this type of floor worth refinishing or should I just lay new hardwood over the plywood?

Any help is appreciated. I could email pictures if it helps answer my questions.



02:55PM | 01/27/03
Member Since: 01/26/03
542 lifetime posts
how old is the house ? is the pine floor tounge and grove, or laid side by side? why install plywood just to put carpet over it? was the floor uneven? is it possible the pine is the subfloor,and the plywood the underlayment? try having a flooring contractor in your area look at it.,post this additional info ,maybe i can help.


05:19PM | 01/27/03
Member Since: 01/24/03
2 lifetime posts
The house was built in the 20's. Each board is side by side with a groove that in the side that fits into the next board. I can tell by looking at the edges in the basement.

I guess it would be considered subfloor since it is the last layer of flooring underneath the plywood. The floor seems very solid and I sanded a piece of it for testing. It looks quite nice.

Thanks for the help.


07:01AM | 01/28/03
Member Since: 01/14/03
264 lifetime posts
If you have a loose piece, or very clear pictures, you might try taking either to a local lumber supplier and asking them. Trying to identify a wood species over the web might be a little difficult. But you can always try posting a picture.


12:33PM | 01/28/03
Member Since: 01/26/03
542 lifetime posts
the floor is a sub floor and while it is possible to finish it ,it would be very soft and a lot of maintainace, if you want a hard wood floor check out a good do it yourself type floor, a great one is made by bruce hardwood its called coastal woodlands ,its very easy to install,as it is a floating floor (not glued down,but glued in the t/g and installed over pad.***** and home depot can order it for you.


07:55PM | 02/01/03
Member Since: 11/06/02
1280 lifetime posts
If it is new white pine you are right that it will be soft, but in that time period, it was common to use heart pine for flooring. It is extremely hard and strong. It was often used directly over the joists. It took wear well enough to be chosen for installation in public buildings such as schools and courthouses. It is similar in appearance to clear vertical grain doug fir flooring you can buy now. rubbing, sanding, or cutting it can release a turpentine smell.

If it is heart pine in decent shape, it is a rare and valuable find. It will gum up sanding pads easily though from the pitch in the wood.

It comes from the long leafed Lobblolly pine and is not commercially available anymore. There are only about 100,000 acres in plantation growth in the country. Old growth virgin trees are long gone and so is their heart wood, except for salvage operations.

Click to reply button
Inspiration banner


Post a reply as Anonymous

Photo must be in JPG, GIF or PNG format and less than 5MB.

Reply choose button


Post new button or Login button

To test the boundaries of small-footprint living, interior designer Jessica Helgerson moved her family to a 540-square-foo... Filling an underutilized area beneath the stairs is a smart way to save space. Doing so with a stash of wood, however, is ... The Audubon Society inspired wallpaper in this Adirondack-styled mudroom will get you in the outdoor mood. Grab your coat ... Chalkboard paint opens up endless possibilities for customizing your dresser time and time again. Use chalk to label the c... A fireplace in the bathroom creates the ultimate setting for relaxation. Homeowners often choose electric or gas over wood... This roomy boot tray made from punched metal stands up to all the elements. Station it in your mudroom or at your back doo... There’s nothing like a new set of cabinet hardware to refresh a room. The possibilities are endless: Go modern, rustic, or... FLOR tiles are an affordable way to customize a carpeted floor covering for any space. Make anything from runners to wall-... Chalkboard paint features prominently in this elegant yet unpretentious headboard design. Add a new message daily to reflec... Salvaged boards in varying widths and colors make up the dramatic accent wall in this attic space. The high-gloss white of... The indecisive homeowner need not fret over choosing one (or even two) cabinet colors. The kitchen cabinets in this artist... Incorporate nature into your lighting scheme by securing a dead tree in a concrete mold and draping your pendant lamp from... Simple and striking, a couple of pieces of "lovingly used" furniture creates a special kind of charm. A weathered chair fo... First dress up your metal shelves with a coat of paint in an accent color that complements your kitchen decor. Then arrang... Dark wood shelving and a matching upholstered bench keep this closet sleek and refined. The large window brightens the sub...
Follow banner a
Newsletter icon Flipboard glossy Facebook Twitter Pinterest Youtube Rss icon