A new wood floor in 1880 house

Imhappy&Iknowit IOWA zone 6bOctober 18, 2013

I'm sort of thinking I might rip up the carpet in two rooms of an 1880 house and put in wood. This is a farm house, not fancy in any way. There is nothing special about it, strictly a roof over my head. I think I remember correctly that the floor the carpet was laid on was probably wide pine boards painted milk chocolate brown. Since I live in the winter belt, I think I would need radiant heat under any floor that didn't have carpet and pad. I would probably get an area rug at some point but it won't be as warm as wall to wall. Thinking of what I might do, what wood should I be thinking about? Would 1x6 pine boards be appropriate? I wouldn't paint them this time around but I would lay them over the existing. Will it look odd to have them run the opposite direction from the original. I think it would but I didn't want to take up the old floor. Maybe 1x4 would be better? Or should I take up the old boards and run them through a thickness plainer to either use the back side or take a bit off the front side? I suspect stripping would not take the paint off. I might end up with goo. And if I did that, I'd need a different method of installing radiant heat. And this is why I'm still thinking instead of doing!

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Radiant heat would not work with 1x6 pine boards. They will warp.

You need some species of wood, or a flooring specifically designed to use radiant heat.

The carpet is probably laid over the original floor, which is 6" tongue and groove boards nailed right over the joists. You might need to add some sheet underlayment for rigidity, but 3/4" oak strip T&G floors run perpendicular the joists are quite sturdy.

Before you go all excited-like on the flooring, investigate what is under the carpet. It might be possible to insulate under the floor for more comfort and fewer drafts without going to the hassle and expense of radiant sub-floor heating.

First, check the rest of the house for weather-stripping, caullking and appropriate insulation.

Here is a link that might be useful: My new floor

    Bookmark   October 19, 2013 at 4:33PM
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Imhappy&Iknowit IOWA zone 6b

I remember that thread!
I haven't checked what it would cost to spray foam under that floor. My basement isn't winter cold but floors are cold no matter what. It's not possible to have a draft free floor where I live. I've never been in a house where I'd want to lay on the floor in the winter. They're wonderful barefoot in July, though! I didn't think the radiant through under a real wood floor. I should have thought of that. Maybe as a first step, check out the price to spray foam under it from the basement. I know it would help to insulate the sill and it's been on my list for 4 years. Unless something else more important goes wrong, the floors are getting closer to the top of the list, maybe in 2 years.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2013 at 5:33PM
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