Need advice on best way to repair/replace/cover single layer T&G floor

Discussion in 'Flooring Potpourri' started by rkent_home, Dec 2, 2017.

  1. rkent_home

    rkent_home New Member

    I have an older home (1908) in south Texas (Freeport) near the coast. (Trivia tidbit: the house was built by Stephen F. Austin's nephew for his mother). The original floor is 3 inch wide T&G with no subfloor. The house is a pier and beam balloon structure where the walls sit on top of the floor and each single floor board runs the length of the house (50ft). Prior to my ownership, the house had settled to the ground and instead of paying a bit more to dig underneath, the previous owner had the levelers cut holes (2'x2') in the floor to access the piers and these holes were patched with 3/4 plywood. I cannot simply replace the T&G boards because I can not find them at the length I need (and/or at the right cost/quality) to span several joists so that, over time, they do not bow. So... what is the best route to a new/refinished floor? I though about covering with 1/2" plywood and then reflooring with engineered planking, but is that the best way to go? Should I seal the "subfloor" before laying plywood over? Tar paper? How to adhere the plywood... glue and screw? I am not concerned about air penetration as it's an old house... it's supposed to be drafty! I am open to any and all recommendations. I have rebuilt this house substantially over the past decade and refinished all of the upstairs floors beautifully, but am procrastinating on the bottom floor... Thanks for any ideas!
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  2. Chris 45

    Chris 45 Director of P.R. on some deserted island. I Support TFP

    So I had the exact same issue in my last house. Some clown cut through the original pine floor and just patched it with a sheet of OSB. I was lucky enough to find an equivalent of the same flooring to patch things up with. Was it as long as the original boards? No. Was it long enough to hit a few joists? Yes. Stagger the boards and lace things in as best you can and make the joints land on joists. A patch is a patch but I was able to maintain the look of the original floor and then I refinished the whole thing. It’s a 100 year old floor. Patches, done acceptably, are part of the charm and character. I guarantee you can find some matching flooring somewhere to do a patch that will be cheaper than laying an entirely new floor.

    Here is a 1908 floor I did that had some boards patched in. A little creativity during the finishing process is all it takes sometimes.

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    Last edited: Dec 2, 2017
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  3. Dan Schultz

    Dan Schultz Certified Wood Floor Inspector Charter Member

    I agree with Chris, wholeheartedly!

    You already have a historic home. Don't lose the value of your floor. It's very likely more valuable than you imagined. Psst... don't tell your assessor.

    Even if it's true heart pine, you should be able to find some reclaimed product that will match seamlessly, except for the lengths. Yes, it will be a patch. Even reclaimed patches have history about where the material came from. Again, don't tell your assessor.

    You wouldn't believe how many people wouldn't even recognize it as a patch.
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