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Tiles over timber floor ? Any concern?

Discussion in 'Renovation & Home Improvement' started by LucyCat, 25th Mar, 2016.

  1. LucyCat

    LucyCat Active Member

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    Hi, all...

    Will there be any expensive problems if tiles are laid over the timber floor ?

    I went to see a house with (old style pinkish ) tiles over the timber floor. I could feel the timber movement when walking around the house, but surprisingly I didn't see any cracks.

    Should I avoid this kind of houses? What should I do if I want to change the tiles?

    Many thanks.
     
  2. DaveM

    DaveM Adelaide Buyers Agent & KFC Strategist Business Member

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    Tiles will be laid on concrete sheeting over the timbers and not directly on. This prevents cracking.
     
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  3. Xenia

    Xenia Adelaide Property Manager Business Member

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    There are problems when tiles are put over timber floors. I would suggest fixing or staining the current floor boards or floating timber floors over the top.
     
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  4. Tim86

    Tim86 Well-Known Member

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    If theyve tiled straight onto the timber floorboards then the boards will be rooted if they used decent glue and you try to knock them up. As timber expands and contracts the tiles wont feel solid and can crack and lift etc... pretty rubbish.
     
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  5. LucyCat

    LucyCat Active Member

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    Thank you very much, everyone.

    Will take all the points mentioned here into consideration when doing my own reno or future house inspection.
     
  6. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    The coefficient of expansion in seasoned timber is much lower than other materials eg ceramic tiles, metal or brick. Unless you're intending to submerse your timber flooring in water for weeks the timber will be stable (15% moisture content).

    Fixings may become loose and boards may squeak..
     
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  7. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    The coefficient of expansion in seasoned timber is much lower than other materials eg ceramic tiles, metal or brick. Unless you're intending to submerse your timber flooring in water for weeks the timber will be stable (15% moisture content).

    Fixings may become loose and boards may squeak..
     
  8. pinkboy

    pinkboy Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    There are a few things you might consider:

    If the tiles are sound (which you suggest there is no cracking), you might consider tiling straight over the top of the tiles with new tiles, and perhaps a larger format tile (600 x 600 or larger) so the 'load' is spread out further than the current format tiles. You will need to be confident that the current timber bearers can handle the load. You will want to use very flexible rubberized tile adhesive.

    As @Tim86 suggested, you will probably damage the floor anyway lifting the tiles. If my above suggestion is not an option, and you need to remove the tiles to retile with a 6mm fibre cement tile underlay with nails @ 100mm intervals as @DaveM suggests.

    I would definitely suggest you *not* rip up the tiles and polish the floors. If this is an old, old house, and the tiling is old, then there is a fair chance the tiles were laid with a direct cement product. What happens when you remove this, and then polish the floors, the lime then leeches out of the timber and then makes the varnish 'cloudy'. You then have to rethink another option which will be costly to you having already paid to polish.

    As @Scott No Mates suggests, there might only be slight movement with the timber, and the tiles were laid using a good quality rubber glue (if it was a recent tile job, even though the pattern/colour may be old). You may feel a slight 'sponginess' to the floor as per your OP, but not see any cracking, however, Id say there is minute cracking everywhere within the adhesive to give this effect. Im wondering if there are sika expansion joints in the current floor, or perhaps cutouts in the timber floor underneath (another old school tiling practice, where the timber was 'notched'?

    pinkboy
     
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  9. Tim86

    Tim86 Well-Known Member

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    Im guessing then that its probably more a case of there being issues due to dodgy workmanship causing the tiles to lift and crack etc... if they did a dodgy job putting the tiles down then they probably also did a dodgy job putting the floorboards down. Loose nails. No adhesive. Not enough nails etc... then you wind up with all this t and g curling on the edges and kicking tiles up etc... Im also wondering if they use norman cement tile glue when putting the tiles down. I dont think that sticks well to wooden floors.
     
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  10. LucyCat

    LucyCat Active Member

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    Thanks a lot, guys.

    That house is around 50 years old. Won't consider it after reading all the replies here.

    Just for curiosity, I contacted the agent to find out how & when the tiles were put, but was told that the house was under contract , no further information would be given.

    Sorry that I cannot provide more detail about the tiles.
    And Thanks a again for all the informative replies & possible solutions.