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rookiepb 10-22-2008 09:52 AM

Vinyl or Tile over OSB subfloor

I have installed 3/8" OSB as a subfloor. Now I want to use vinyl, laminate, or ceramic tile. Do i need some type of under layment before useing any of these products?

As I have read from others the seams need to be filled with wood putty and sanded for a smooth vinyl flooring.

Can one install laminate floors on slightly unlevel pier and beam floors

I have a concreate porch that is unlevel. Can I level it with thin set and them put down ceramic tile??

Thanks for your help and advice

kevinschung 10-22-2008 06:37 PM

3/8" OSB is too thin for sub floor. Min 3/4" is required.
It becomes uneven due to thin subfloor
You need to add 3/8 or 1/2" plywood to prevent more sagging first.
and then you can install particle board & vinyl with glue on top

spaz2965 10-22-2008 08:36 PM

3/8" osb is not good enough for ceramic tile but you may lay 1/4" lauwn over that for your vinyl, and yes do your seems as that is a wear point and the vinyl will wear quicker there. As for you laminate floor, you are talking like free floating pergo flooring yes you can lay that on a not so level floor. For you concrete yes you may use thinset with super flexable additive then your ceramic tile. When you lay your tile also use the additive and always coat the back of you tile along with a thin coat on floor, you can tell if the back has not been covered you will have loose tiles and hollow spots under tile. When I walk on some tile I can hear the hollow spots and sooner than later the tiles pop up.

rookiepb 10-23-2008 08:07 AM

Thanks for the reply guys. I should have said I laid the 3/8" OSB over already existing hardwood floors to try and improve the level of the floor. I was successful with doing some leveling from underneath, and where there is no floor at all I will go back with 3/4" like in the bathroom area. Thanks

Yes it will be free floating if I go the laminate way. Do you recommend vinyl over tile, or laminate if the house shifts a little over time. The floor is pretty solid but wasn't sure if one would need to seal the OSB to keep it from absorbing the water out of the thin set and swelling making the floor worse.
Is this lauwn like cement backer board? I hadn't heard of it. Thanks again for the support.

spaz2965 10-23-2008 09:05 AM

I would not put vinyl over tile as I do not think it will adhere properly, so I would use laminate in that area, note: do not use new blade for cutting laminate flooring. You don't have to use any Luann as you floor is thick enough, and is only used for vinyl, no it is not like backer board. Also you do not have to use backer board, or cement board as long as your flooring now is at least 3/4" think but you will use a flexible additive, when using on plywood/osb, to your thin set and make sure you also thin set back of tile, no you don't have to seal your osb as it will not soak up that much water. Hope this helps more, I will help as much as I can.


rookiepb 10-24-2008 06:32 AM

Hey Joe/others

Thanks for the reply. On the flexible additive to the thin set, I guess this is something I can get at Lowes or Home Depot. I agree about covering both. I have actually heard some hallow spots in some friends tile. So with do both there on the floor and on the tile. If one uses the flexible additive this will assist in the tile not cracking down the grout joint, is that its purpose.

In your opinion which would work best ceramic tile or laminate on a slightly uneven floor? This would be used down a hall way, bath rooms and a kitchen. I could split up what I use where, was just trying to minimize the number of different floorings. Thanks again for ur help

Glad to hear the OSB won't soak up much mositure.

spaz2965 10-24-2008 04:28 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Myself I like tile, and to split up the floors do something creative, like put on 45 angle or put borders in it. If you don't use the flexible additive your tiles will end up popping the thin set doesn't rally stick to the plywood and that is why cement board goes down but isn't necessary as long as you use the additive, what it really is is glue that gets mixed in part water 50% water 50% additive.

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rookiepb 10-25-2008 01:06 PM

thanks for the pic's and the info, still haven't decided if i want to go with vinyl or tile. No doubt the tile would look better just don't want anything popping up as this will be a rental property. Thanks for all the answers, your tile work looks great!!

spaz2965 10-25-2008 02:48 PM

Thanks, since this is a rental property I would not even think of anything else but tile as it it much harder for renters to screw up all your hard work, vinyl they will tear sliding something across it and the same with laminate. You can get super flexible additive at Lowe's and if you coat floor and back of tile I promise you that you will have no problem. Use a darker color grout, not black, as they will have no respect for the hard work that you put into it. Hope this helps, Good Luck


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