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dawnn 06-21-2007 10:06 AM

Hardwood floor install above plaster ceiling

I am new to the forum and have a question about installing a hardwood floor in what was formerly an attic space. Has anyone installed oak floor with a pneumatic nail gun over plaster ceiling, and have there been any problems with the plaster ceiling cracking/breaking? Our house is a 90 year old bungalow. First floor has plaster walls and ceilings - which would be below a hardwood floor we'd be installing in the former attic space. We are hoping for oak flooring over 3/4" plywood subfloor (also over original attic boards, not in good condition but want to leave). Would love to hear other experience similar to this, good or bad.


Dawn Nanfito

glennjanie 06-21-2007 11:07 AM

Welcome to the Community Dawn:
We are happy to have you.
I don't think anyone could gruantee no cracking of the plaster but I think the pneumatic driver would be more safe than the manual nail gun which uses the large mallet to drive the nails. The air gun doesn't seem to shake everything because the pressure is all on the nail; while the mallet gun has to be hit hard enough to drive the nail the first time and that takes quite a whallop.
In a 90 year old house the lath that holds the plaster is the small wood strips with the plaster bulging through the cracks and having a large anchor on the back side. Whereas, the newer lath is 2' x 4' pieces of sheetrock. So, I would think the older method has a better chance of holding than the modern method; but still there is no gurantee. Wow, doesn't that sound like a politician's answer?
The best I can recommend is to use glue and screws on the plywood, being careful not to drop any pieces of the plywood during installation, which would serve to stiffen the ceiling/floor and then give the pneumatic gun a try. Make sure there are no bundles of flooring dropped and no large stacks of it in a concentrated area (which would flex the ceiling/floor).

Rustedbird 06-24-2007 11:17 AM

Are the joists adequate to the task? That's an additional inch and a half of a layer of wood going up there.

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