Best approach for installing 3/4 x 3" pine flooring?

Discussion in 'Beginners Forum' started by Zengirl, Jun 9, 2013.

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  1. Jun 9, 2013 #1

    Zengirl

    Zengirl

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    Hello! I have read about 20 documents and posts about installing underlayment and pine flooring over my existing subfloor and want to make sure I've got all the right steps and materials planned out. Any expert feedback or corrections would be greatly appreciated!

    Assumption is the existing subfloor is 30+ years old (house is 60 years old, but this room was an addition at some point). I have moderate DIY skills and am petite - so relying on muscle strength to get the job done isn't an option!

    1. I will add more vapor barrier over the exposed crawl space dirt, where I have access and visibility.
    2. Existing subfloor on the joists is 3/4 wood (old shiplap style, maybe pine - I can't find exact replacement). Some of it is in bad shape has split and cracked at knots and is very squeaky in places. I am replacing the bad boards with closest match - a 3/4 spruce, but straight boards, not shiplap. Should I use 2" coarse-threaded screws or nails to make sure remaining old subfloor boards are solid and won't start squeaking?
    3. If subfloor has significant high/low spots, I've read that sanding, asphalt shingles, or compound filling (not sure what type) should be used. Any suggestions or preferred method?
    4. Should there be a tar paper, 15 lb felt or other material between the 3/4 subfloor and new underlayment?
    5. Then I'll install new underlayment at 1/4" from wall. Planning on 1/2" T&G plywood. Should I use 3/4" ply? Or would gypsum fiber board be better for this application? With plywood, I've read I should use ring shanked nails or screws to secure it to the subfloor.
    6. Then I'll lay down either rosin paper or the asphalt saturated felt paper. Any professional preferences for the paper between underlayment and finished flooring?
    7. Then the 3/4 x 3" unfinished pine flooring gets installed with 3/4" spacing from wall. Will be top nailed on wall pieces only and blind nailed on top of tongue at appropriate spacing with 1 1/2" finish nails on all boards. I've read that when installing by hand it is advisable to predrill a hole before hammering in the nails (and use a punch so as not to damage tongue). Should I rent a nail gun or is it a better bet to do this by hand (predrilling and nailing)?
    8. Finally I'll sand the installed pine flooring with an orbital sander (?) and then apply desired stain and poly.

    I think that does it! Did I miss any steps? I sure appreciate any advice here so I don't mess this up. It is for about 140 square foot office space.


    Thank you!
    Vick
     
  2. Jun 11, 2013 #2

    Ken

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    Ok. Let me see if I can knock a few of these out. Your vapor barrier should run up the sides of the crawlspace. The entire space should be covered, seams overlapped and taped, and fastened to the footplates of the foundation.

    I use screws for plywood squeaks, never fails.
     
  3. Jun 11, 2013 #3

    Ken

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    You cant use levelor under hardwood as you have to nail through it. You can use up to six layers of tar paper, sheet vinyl, luan, or plywood.

    I like to use a white silicone paper under all my hardwood installs however if that's not available use 15# tar paper. I like the white because it's much cleaner.
     
  4. Jun 11, 2013 #4

    Ken

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    You're planning on sanding an entire floor with an orbital sander!? Rent a big one, you're going to be sanding that everyday straight for the next three years! Lol. Also use a finish nailer for the last few rows, no pre drilling required.
     
  5. Jun 11, 2013 #5

    rugaddict

    rugaddict

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    you cant nail down the plank with finish nails ---they have not nearlly enough holding power---buy or rent a flooring nailer it will save you at least a week of work and dozens of drill bits
     
  6. Jun 11, 2013 #6

    Ernesto

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    Number 2, always use screws for subfloor, counter sunk of course. Kiln dried lumber, check moisture content,
    Number 3, I use an electric hand planer for high spots and either 30,15 lb felt or shingles ahould do any low spots. If you need more nail down some quarter inch ply and plane it down. Felt and everything else goes on top of the underlayment.
    No 1/2 inch ply, only 3/4.
    Check moisture content of underlayment, should be within 2% of flooring.

    You can use glue and finish nails for the last rows, I use finish nails where the base goes so it hides the nail.
    Best wasy is to top nail with 8d finish nails. You can actually screw them in most of the way with a drill driver then punch them in and fill hole.
    Depending on how wide your plank is, if it is plank or strip, 5 inch and over gets glued with a bead of urethane adhesive.
    Theres some people who have written books about this. Some actually full spread and predrill/nail all planks. Pretty labor intensive and you need really straight planks. A nailer pulls planks that are slightly bowed together which otherwise would have gaps. Not using a nailer might require a puller.
     
  7. Jun 11, 2013 #7

    Ken

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  8. Jun 11, 2013 #8

    rugaddict

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    i could be reading her post incorrectly ken---but how could you damage the tounge facenailing the started rows?
     
  9. Jun 11, 2013 #9

    Zengirl

    Zengirl

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    Thank you Ken, Ernesto and rugaddict!

    You've set me straight on several points.

    I like the vapor barrier suggestions (although not possible in this add-on unless I entirely removed the existing subfloor, since it doesn't have actual crawlspace beneath joists).

    I'll add screws to the old and new subfloor and will be using screws only on the new underlayment (3/4 plywood layer).

    Regarding point #3, I only have slight high and low spots in the old subfloor. It sounds like I could plane any noticeable high spots and fill the low spots with 15# felt (I don't know if I can locate the other product options Ken mentioned).

    If I'm reading correctly, I do NOT cover the entire subfloor with paper before laying down the plywood.

    Regarding point #7, I meant to say I would be facenailing just the first three rows by hand. Then I would switch over and use a flooring nailer for the rest of the planks (is there a particular size nail I will need to use with the nail gun for pine floors?).

    Regarding point #8, sounds like I'll be renting one of those monstrous sanders! Maybe I can sweet talk my guy into doing that part for me :)


    Thanks again for your time and advice.
    Warmly,
    Vick
     
  10. Jun 12, 2013 #10

    Ken

    Ken

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    I dont believe that you would. I think we may have been talking about two different things. My apologies.
     
  11. Jun 12, 2013 #11

    Ken

    Ken

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    Vic,
    you can face nail those starter rows with a finish nailer in less than half the time as doing it by hand.
     
  12. Jun 14, 2013 #12

    happyhours

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    I believe a 2" nail is the preferred lenght
     

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