Replace Bathroom Subfloor?

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Topic by FMG posted 07-22-2012 07:06 PM 11235 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 3699 days

07-22-2012 07:06 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

We just started to gut our all original 1973 bathroom. The floor was well done for what technologies were available at that time. 3/4 plywood subfloor, tar paper, steel mesh, than 3/4” of light weight concrete followed by ceramic tile… After I removed all of that the sub floor has a lot of water stains and smells musty. So my question is…should I replace the sub floor or seal it and put a substrate on top? Pics are out of order sorry
Thank You,

View Enoelf's profile


9 posts in 3210 days

07-23-2012 08:34 PM

If it were me, I would replace it. That will also give you a chance to look for any damage to the underlying structure and correct any possible issues.

-- No, finishing touches are what you do at the END of the project!

View Sailor's profile


19 posts in 3926 days

07-23-2012 11:56 PM

If since 73 that is as bad as it has gotten then I don’t see a problem with it. Unless it has soft spots or other areas of concern I would leave it be. If it holds nails and screws your good.

If you want you could put a layer of luan or 3/8” ply, but be aware of how much it could raise your new floor above your old floor adjacent to the bathroom.

View GaryL's profile


206 posts in 3707 days

07-24-2012 12:19 AM

I’d agree with sailor. If it’s still sound and solid, leave it be. If there is an offensive odor than seal it with Zinsser BIN shellac sealer. It will seal anything and everything but wear a respirator when applying and plan on going somewhere else ( like taking your hard working, tile chipping wife out to dinner..or is that you..??...no profile ) for awhile after the application.

-- The difference between a pro and an amateur, an amateur points out his mistakes

View FMG's profile


2 posts in 3699 days

07-24-2012 12:55 AM

Gary that is actually my wife. Thanks for the advice. I am taking it. I thought my profile would carry over from LJ’s but I guess not. Thank you too Sailor appreciate it.

View Anna25's profile


5 posts in 3027 days

10-13-2012 11:39 AM

i was there i change it cause its not good more. its very old and dirty. i will go mad it you make look on my bath….

-- http://www.besureservices.com/building-and-maintenance/

View IsabelCre's profile


7 posts in 3003 days

11-07-2012 04:32 AM

I agree with that….If I would be there then I should replace it …

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3 posts in 2876 days

03-12-2013 01:15 PM

Me too i would suggest to use some tiles for it.In my home at Finland country i use tile for my bathroom renovation and i also choose sliding door that i bought at http://www.mattiovi.fi and i also seen the good appearances of it in my bathroom.

View needshave's profile


11 posts in 2887 days

03-12-2013 09:29 PM


Man you must be living right, for you to be able to get the wife to do all the Demo work and even busting up the concrete…Yep, you’re doing it right.

I agree with Gary. If the sub-floor is solid and will take screws I would use it. Here is what I have done in the past. I glued and screwed 3/4” plywood to the sub-floor,which you’re wife has exposed. I use long enough screws to hit the floor joists and structural construction adhesive. I try to turn the plywood 90 degrees to the existing sub-floor. This assembly will give you an extremely solid base to work with and will bring you’re new floor up to the level you should be without the ceramic tile. (IF I Understand the old floor correctly)

I then use Versabond type 2 thin-set, Available at hd, and bond the new ceramic tile to the plywood with it. The Versabond is made for bonding to plywood/concrete and works extremely well and provides a moisture tight seal to the plywood. Then just grout.

I’m actually doing that exact thing to our 1850 Gothic revival currently. Good Luck with it.

I have several different properties and this has worked well for me. The floors have been down for about six years now and no problems.

View dineshobroy's profile


10 posts in 2712 days

08-24-2013 11:35 AM

Hi replace the bad floor stones with tiles or marbles stone.For bathroom i think tiles is better.

-- Home Design / Home Services

View heather488's profile


1 post in 2357 days

08-14-2014 10:07 AM

it would take me a day or less to rip everything down to the sub floor. If the plywood is good, I leave it alone or install new over the old providing the old isn’t moldy or damage. There is a web site that give you step by step installation tips to install tile flooring.

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