Flooring and Carpeting/wood flooring


one of my customers has half in. nail down hardwood they were going to go with ceramic so they installed half in. backer board. Ive been doing this bout 20 yrs. and have never came across this situation. do you think I would still be able to use a floor nailer? or should I glue it with boshstic urathain base or could I glue the tounge and groove and let it be floating? Please help me out on this

Sorry I am tardy with my reply Douglas...work lately has been brutal.

  Ok...I am trying to sort out what you have said here with your question. With an existing layer of 1/2" hardwood the homeowners "also" installed a layer of some kind of backer board to flush out the overall floor finish and now they are wanting you to install Ceramic Tile over the top of everything...both the hardwood and the backer board. Is that about right? Now "you" have mentioned using a floor nailer or some glue on the "tongue and groove" and let it be floating. This is where I get lost. What exactly are you trying to glue/nail and leave floating. My first impression is that you are only wanting to install Ceramic tile over the now adjusted and same level sub-floor. Are you wanting to make more secure the existing hardwood prior to installing the tile? This might explain to me what you are referring to with the floor nailer. So rather than try to be a mind reader here, I would rather you consider at the least pulling up the old hardwood and putting down additional backerboard rather than take the chance at installing overtop of the hardwood. With a uniform material to work from you are going to be less likely to have what may start as a partial failure leading to a larger failure, neither option is good for future business and longevity of the install. I always have a concern when going over things like this but for different reasons, it's true the bonding survival is critical to everything but also there is the potential for ending up with an unsatisfactory finish condition that ends up being either a trip hazard at some doorway or point of egress or a uncomfortable visual outcome that wasn't anticipated by either you or the home owner...follow me? If the original hardwood is the standard 2 1/4" then that is a lot of area to attempt to secure top nailing everything, every board. You don't mention how old of an install the hardwood portion is but if it is older than 5 years then this floor has moved quite a lot going through many Seasonal changes. This can begin to loosen the flooring from the sub-floor. This is why hardwood floors begin to creak/squeak over time as things loosen up. You definitely don't want that to happen beneath your new Ceramic Tile install. You know after 20 years in the business where that can lead you. So I guess what I am leaning towards Douglas is "not" to try to cover the hardwood portion of the flooring. Let remove it and put down matching backerboard giving not only a more uniform material to work from but the best possible chance at a great and long lasting outcome. I hope this helps you Douglas, again forgive me for being late. If I didn't answer what you were really looking for please return and we will work on it further with you to get you what you need....

Perry V.

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Perry Vellenga


Ceramic Tile/Marble. I can answer questions about floor preparation, tile selection, layout questions, performance of products, expectations of finish, compatabilities, questions about grout and epoxies, evaluating an installer, asking the right questions to check competence...more? 33 years this August 2012/ many years in commercial application from exterior finishes to Mall store fronts/ interior finishes like floor packages in stores inside Malls examples: The Limited, Lerner/NY, Lane Bryants, Bombay Co., Now involved in Residential new construction covering all types of interior finishes and designs.


I worked in an exclusive field of floorcovering called "Tenant Development" which is by invitational bid only, by way of a National bid list. These are large floor packages usually over 3500 sq. ft. of 18" x 18" Marble and Granite and many other types of Marble and sizes. They are specialty stores where the floor package can cost upwards of $50,000 for one store. I have also done "Structure" stores and J. Riggins stores, Lane Bryant,Express and Body Shop stores where wood flooring is used. Presently work for a National Flooring Company in the Residential new construction arena that covers most interior design elements..Granite Slab tops/wood flooring both job finished and prefinished ect..

My response's are published all across the Internet and picked up by multiple Interior Design sites and Industry related web sites where people have questions...

too many most of which don't count...

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