Carol's Bath: from one popped tile to major makeover :D

Discussion in 'Remodel Forum & Blog' started by SuperSewist, Mar 3, 2006.

  1. SuperSewist

    SuperSewist New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Location:
    Wyoming
    It all started when a tile popped off from the wetwall of the tub enclosure - - -
    I hope this is the right forum in which to start this thread.

    Some background on me:
    love to tear things apart. putting them back together is a close second.
    not afraid to tear one more thing out, may as well, y'know, after you're this far
    I'd rather have a saw than a dishwasher.

    Some background on the bath:
    current: castiron tub, not level, some deglazing on bottom.
    tile surround on 3 sides.
    wall hung sink.
    standard stool.
    c. 1950's construction

    ---
    Since the bathtub wasn't level, the plywood in front was pretty bad off - came off in individula ply-sheets. The lower half of the tub's wet wall pretty much fell off into my lap. Sheetrock under tile, evidence of black fuzzy patches - small and light but frequent. Toilet in excellent shape. Sink in good shape.
    ---
    plan A: replace tub with a mid-range soaker with jets, not too fancy, not freestanding. Keep toilet & sink, new vinyl floor, remove & re-tile the entire surround. Re-do whatever walls need it (probably just a bit around the tub) and probably re-do the ceiling. Maybe move the 15" linen closet from the right side of the tub to the left (ext wall) so I can have two shower heads. Planning about 2-3 months so I can change my mind at least 3 times.

    QUESTION 1. LEVEL THE FLOOR.
    The tub isn't level, and the floor isn't level under it either. A lot! about 1/4" per foot from the door (inside/hall) to the back wall (exterior). But more of the slope is it the back half, not so much closer to the door. The 3/4" plywood did not go under the tub; the tub sits on the diagonal flooring. It has all been removed except for the bit around the toilet flange. (my plumber will drill it out later) The floor joists are 10", so that makes the 2x12's, right? They're on 16" centers. Bath is 8' x 9', with the joists running the 9' way. The diagonal flooring is 1x6's.

    What method do I use to level the floor? Should the plywood go under the tub? I've read all your posts on what kind of plywood to use, etc. Since I'm using vinyl, not tile, is black roofing underlayment still the product to use between the diagonal floor and the plywood floor? (that's the way it was before)? (been all over jb's tile forums, too)

    What other pichers would you like?

    -~Carol~-

    Attached Files:

  2. brownizs

    brownizs In the Trades

    Messages:
    196
    Location:
    Springfield, IL
    Do you have a six-foot level? Try and find out the slope of the floor and that will help you in knowing if it is 1" or such from the low to the high. After you have determined the slope of the floor, then you can go forward in knowing where you need to level the floor, if you want to go the easy route. The best solution is to level the house from underneath, due to it will settle more if not stopped, and just leveling the floor is not enough in the long-term.
  3. sulconst2

    sulconst2 New Member

    Messages:
    205
    Location:
    old bridge nj
    here you go. real quick now.
    pull the tub and the flange. extend the 3" waste pipe up around 6 inches above the floor. pull the patch 3/4 plywood up. fix and fill 1 x 6 around waste. lay new 3/4 to entire room, perpendicular to joists, seams on joists. leave cut-out for tub drain and an extra inch around waste pipe. install tub level with setting compound.
    if it was mine i would install cbu then a self leveling mix then tile. for vinyl use 1/2" pts plywood. when done cut the waste, with an inside cutter, and install the flange.
    get to it! :cool:
  4. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,183
    Location:
    New England
  5. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    Here is something additional to do or not to do :
    Installing radiant floor heating in just one afternoon in 10 steps:

    [​IMG]

    Plywood was covered by tarpaper first to prevent the subfloor plywood to suck the moisture from the mortar. Metal lath was nailed on top. Both of these steps have nothing to do with floor heating. They are to make the tile job better, to last longer.

    1. The floor area was measured first.
    It was approx. 50+ sq. ft.

    Electric radiant floor heating should be installed only under 'walkable' floor surface. This surface should be an area not covered by anything solid like shower stalls, vanities, toilets, etc.

    Although a 49 sq.ft. mat was available, it was much easier to install somewhat smaller mat like the 44 sq. ft. mat into the 50+ sq.ft. area.

    2. Next, the electrical panel was evaluated for the available space needed to add one 15 Amps GFCI breaker to power the 640Watt mat. 640 Watts @ 120V = 5.4 Amps. This is the job for a qualified person like a licensed electrician.

    3. The location for the thermostat single gang box was chosen and the box was installed. We went for the electronic manual version of the thermostas (ON/OFF + floor temperature setting). The programmable model would have been GFCI equipped.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  6. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    Warm tiles

    4. Then, the floor sensor was installed.

    [​IMG]

    5. The mat was next.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  7. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    Warm tiles

    6. The mesh of the mat (not the heating wire!) is stapled to the subfloor. Again, take caution to never, ever drive a staple through the heating wire!

    For the slab subfloor, a hot glue gun will be more appropriate as the staples obviously would not work.

    Please note the location of the conduit for the thermostat floor temperature sensor.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    7. Test the resistance of the mat.
    [​IMG]
  8. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    Warm floor

    8. 'Cold' power supply leads are run up to the thermostat (sometimes called a 'floorstat')...

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    ...and the whole contraption was turned on for few minutes to see how the bare mat heating element will heat up. The test was OK, the insulation of the heating element was warm to the touch as it should be.

    [​IMG]
  9. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    The rest is almost identical to installing cold tiled floor.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  10. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    9. Two flex conduits were used: one for the power cold leads, the second for the floor temperature sensor. The sensor conduit was installed on the subfloor some 1" away from the heating element of the mat.

    [​IMG]
    10. When cured the floor will be ready for the tiles.
    [​IMG]
  11. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    Caution: don't use the floor heating to speed-up mortar cure time!
    MAINTAIN THE DISTANCE BETWEEN HEATING COILS!
    NOT OK:[​IMG] 1" IS THE ABSOLUTE MININUM. 2"-3" IS BEST.[​IMG]
  12. Mirko

    Mirko New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Westfield, NJ
    WHEN INSTALLING THE MAT(S):
    NEVER CUT THE HEATING WIRE!
    ONLY THE FIBERGLASS MESH CAN BE CUT, NEVER THE HEATING COIL!
    [​IMG]
    Because of this the mat should be ordered to size or smaller than the available floor area.

    If the floor area to be heated is more than 140 sq.ft. more mats can be connected. At this point 230-240V mats are better (50% less Amperes than 120V models.
    [​IMG]

    More how to cover large rooms @
    http://www.ideal-heating.com/article.php?a=58
    http://www.ideal-heating.com/article.php?a=54
  13. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,183
    Location:
    New England
    Before you get any further, you probably will want to go over to www.johnbridge.com and describe what you have and get some help.

    While the method you used is not uncommon, it does not meet the Tile Council of America's requirements. This agency is often code for various locals. The method you used is affectionately called a Jersey Mud job and is known to fail in many cases.

    When you go over there, suggest you post the details of the subflooring and joist structure - the maximum unsupported length of the joists, their depth, width, and spacing. That will allow you or the moderators/helpers to calculate your floor deflection statistics. The floor needs to be a minimum of L/360 for ceramic and L/720 for stone. That is determined by the joist structure. Then, the subfloor needs to be thick enough to handle the deflection between the joists. Also note, a double layer of plywood is specified if doing stone to decouple the movement from one sheet to the other. Lath and a scratch coat of mortar will not guarantee a tile job that won't crack. If you continue the way you are, you might need to do a full mud floor (minimum depth of 1-1/4" of deck mud) or a layer of slc. I'm not sure, but the structural engineers and tile pros will.
  14. sulconst2

    sulconst2 New Member

    Messages:
    205
    Location:
    old bridge nj
    WOOF WOOF

    get em jad
  15. SuperSewist

    SuperSewist New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Location:
    Wyoming
    wow. thanks, all!

    I don't have a 6' level, but I do have a straight 8' 2x4 I put on end, and put the 4' level on that. Doing it that way it is only about 1/2" down from door to wall. The first 3' from door is about level, the 2nd 3' is about 1/2" off, and the 3rd 3' is another 1/2 off. So it looks like there's some up-n-down going on. The tub sits on the back 2/3ds, so it has a pretty healthy 7/8" down slope to the back and also 1/2" down to the outside. No wonder the 3/4" ply came up in shreads :) Knowing the rest of this house, there's no guarantee it was installed or built level in the first place. That's why I thought it better to remove it and get a new tub now rather than just repair the tile work. May as well, y'know.

    No tile on the floor, just for the tub surround. Been all over johnbridge.com and decided to start here, then post there when I'm ready for the tile work. But I will if you say so! I didn't want to be stoned :eek: for asking how to level a floor when I'm not going to put tile on it. I'm getting pretty good at regular plaster over wood lathe so I think I'll be OK on the tile, just need the the current state of the art fine points. I have John's first book on order. Thought about the in-floor heat, but probably not on this job.

    to recap:
    3/4 ply over the entire floor, even under the new tub. perpendicular to joists.
    install tub level with setting compound (I've seen the pics)
    for vinyl flooring: an additional CBU or 1/4" ply on the rest of the floor (not under tub) with a self-leveling compound ?between the two layers? or ?over the 1/4"? or ?only if there will be tile? and why the extra layer of CBU or ply here. :confused:
    Should I use the black roofing felt and for which layer?



    -~Carol~-

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Mar 5, 2006
  16. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,183
    Location:
    New England
    Self-leveling cement would do it for you. Fairly pricy, but it is quick and works well. You'd need to raise your toilet flange. Depending on the floor joists, you might need to reinforce the floor first, though. If you can stand the height, a full mudbed would be much less expensive, and work well. It needs to be a minimum of 1-1/4" at the minimum, though. There are ways to minimize that buildup, but it is a lot of work. Basically, you'd need to tear off the current subfloor, attach cleats to the sides of your joists, then install plywood on those cleats so that the end result has the plywood even with the top of the joist. Then put down your mudbed or leveling. The structural engineers overon John's website can help with the details on that as well. Regular thinset is good to about 1/4" and can be used to level things. Medium set is used for granite and marble can handle thicker applications.
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