Flooring Problem - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 06:07 AM Thread Starter
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Flooring Problem

Hi there,
I am in Japan for a few weeks helping my friend in her house.
One of her problems is her hallway floor. It is a kind of fake parquet flooring approximately 1.5 to 2.5cm thick (0.59" to 0.98")
(see attached Photos)
As you can see from the photos there is a hole in the floor 30cm by 25cm or 11.8" by 9.8"
Many Japanese houses are built of wood as is this one, and the house is built on concrete pillars and there is a 55cm or 21.6" hole under the floor down to the ground.
So we either need to fix that hole or re floor the whole hall. (Probably the best option is to re floor the whole hall for as you can see on 1 of the photos, the flooring is in poor condition and looks terrible!)
Please could you give me any advice on how I might go about doing this. I'm completely new to this sort of thing! Also please could you give different-flooring options / materials. Wood of course, but also other possibilities, I'm struggling to figure out how to fix the hole when there is no floor underneath! (For information: There is no access underneath the house so all the work will have to be done above the hole not below!)
Thank you for any help or input you can give me
kind regards Gin
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post #2 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 06:47 AM
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Fixing a hole in the floor is not a job for an amateur with no woodworking experience. It is a big safety issue.

I suggest you find a local carpenter to at least assist or advise in the job.

George
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post #3 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 07:00 AM
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agree with George. obviously, you must repair the sub-structure to a sound and safe condition. only someone on-site, seeing what the situation is, can give the best recommendations for that.


once that is done, we can help with the woodworking part. but more floor may be ripped up in the process, making the decision for you.
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post #4 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 07:30 AM
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Only you can judge if you have the skill for that job. It's more common sense than anything. As close to the ground as the floor is I would pick up all the debris that has fallen through. It would make a dinner bell to termites.

There appears to not be enough framework in the original construction but you can't rebuild the whole house. I think I would be tempted to remove all the floor and sub-floor in the entire hall and add more framing. If it's available where you are I would use pressure treated wood in all the new wood you add to the structure including the new sub-floor. There is pressure treated plywood but avoid purchasing any that is fresh from the factory. It will be dripping wet and I don't think you want to wait weeks for the sub-floor to dry before you install a finished floor.
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post #5 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 08:30 AM
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Big Job!

It apprears that the photographioc coating on the "fake" flooring is peeling off. It appears that the particleboard subfloor has been subjected to water at somepoint?

It will require removing all the fake stuff regardless, so you could start there. Then determine if the subfloor base is solid by drilling, small holes and probing with an ice pick. Then IF that hasn't been degraded, you can probably install the top flooring of her choice.

If the subfloor is bad, then you should recommend a professional carpenter or flooring installer to fix it. That will insure a warranty repair if future issues develop. If you install the top flooring over a bad subfloor, you may not have any warranty recourse?

JMO. ,:smile3:

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #6 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 09:31 AM Thread Starter
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To George

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC View Post
Fixing a hole in the floor is not a job for an amateur with no woodworking experience. It is a big safety issue.

I suggest you find a local carpenter to at least assist or advise in the job.

George
Hi George,
Unfortunately due to money constraints and it being Japan, getting a local carpenter is a non-starter, sadly, we are going to have to do this ourselves. :frown2:
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post #7 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 09:39 AM Thread Starter
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Tim

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agree with George. obviously, you must repair the sub-structure to a sound and safe condition. only someone on-site, seeing what the situation is, can give the best recommendations for that.


once that is done, we can help with the woodworking part. but more floor may be ripped up in the process, making the decision for you.
Hi Tim,
When you say the "sub-structure" do you mean the subfloor or underlayment?
The thing is there are neither of those, just thin OSB, fake parquet flooring is all there is! and then a big hole.
A nearly 2 foot gap which goes straight onto natural, unprepared earth. The house is built on concrete pillars.
I think the whole floor will have to be ripped up. But how to replace it?
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post #8 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Steve

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Only you can judge if you have the skill for that job. It's more common sense than anything. As close to the ground as the floor is I would pick up all the debris that has fallen through. It would make a dinner bell to termites.

There appears to not be enough framework in the original construction but you can't rebuild the whole house. I think I would be tempted to remove all the floor and sub-floor in the entire hall and add more framing. If it's available where you are I would use pressure treated wood in all the new wood you add to the structure including the new sub-floor. There is pressure treated plywood but avoid purchasing any that is fresh from the factory. It will be dripping wet and I don't think you want to wait weeks for the sub-floor to dry before you install a finished floor.
Hi Steve,
Thing is, there is no subfloor just a 2 foot hole to the earth.
I will rip up all the floor just how to replace?
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post #9 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 09:52 AM
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I thought it looked like a 2 foot gap. With a 3/4" thick OSB sub-floor there shouldn't be more than 14 1/2" between the floor joists. If the joists that are there are adequate you could just put 2x4's between them on 16" centers and put a new sub-floor on. You may have to get a carpenter to determine if the joists that are there now are adequate. The size would depend on the span. As close to the ground as the house is my guess is the joists are sub-standard. They are usually done with 2x10's are 2x12's however I've seen them done with 2x6's with a much shorter span. Not long ago I inspected a house the floor joists were done with 2x4's spanning 10 to 12 feet. For some reason the floor was sagging. :smile3:
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post #10 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 10:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ginlane View Post
Hi George,
Unfortunately due to money constraints and it being Japan, getting a local carpenter is a non-starter, sadly, we are going to have to do this ourselves. :frown2:
I can understand money problems. Being in Japan is no different than being in any other country. I have lived in Japan and know that they have very good carpenters. (You do not have to live there to know that)

A broken leg or other injury will quickly eat up any monetary savings on a do it your self job. Is your friend able to afford the health care that will be needed when the floor collapses under his/her feet?

George
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post #11 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 10:46 AM
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I think you need to hire a carpenter at least to tell you what to do if you are going to do the work yourself. If it isn't possible keep us posted during the process. Illustrated in the picture is typically how a pier and beam floor is done. We would need the size on the lumber used in your house and the length of the spans.
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post #12 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ginlane View Post
Hi Tim,
When you say the "sub-structure" do you mean the subfloor or underlayment?
The thing is there are neither of those, just thin OSB, fake parquet flooring is all there is! and then a big hole.
A nearly 2 foot gap which goes straight onto natural, unprepared earth. The house is built on concrete pillars.
I think the whole floor will have to be ripped up. But how to replace it?
1. rip up the entire floor wall to wall.
2. repair hole - this may require rebar, concrete, masonry drilling with supports etc. then laying on concrete level with existing concrete level.
3. find a flooring mfr that allows their floor to be applied over concrete, and install to mfr recommendations. will likely include a vapor barrier, and may or may not include an underlayment.
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post #13 of 13 Old 04-01-2016, 12:53 PM
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there appears to be a sub floor



In this photo there appears to be a sub floor below the fake flooring, maybe about 1/2" thick? That's not thick enough by USA standards to support any typical floor loads.

If it's thicker, like 3/4" and the supports are 24" apart that's another problem. The supports should be 16" on center..... if there are any?

Better photos and an explanation of what is there would give us more detailed info to work from. The photos of the hole helps, but not enough. A close up of the flooring materials and supports is needed.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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