floors at different heights

kruegesmJuly 24, 2013

HI Again,

I am in the process of redoing my kitchen and am almost done. We do not have a very big budget for the remodel and already have new cabinets, counters and a new stove, I still want to replace the floor, but was told under the two layers of vinyl there is abestos tile over wood. I cannot afford to have it removed so have to go over the top. This will make the kitchen a bit higher than the floor in the adjacent dining room.

Is that unusual to have the two different heights?

Thanks so much!

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Before I "settled" on different heights, I'd see if I could remove just the vinyl, it may make the floor low enough to be workable.
It may be just attached around the edges.
Actually, removing tile with asbestos is not a big deal as long as you can remove it without breaking it up in pieces. You just don't want the particles to be airborne.
Search and you will find good information without the panic of "OMG-it's ASBESTOS!"

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 7:46PM
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Thanks so much!

When I had someone in for an estimate the guy acted like we were going to have to spend thousands to get it removed from under the vinyl in a 10 x 15 ft kitchen!

I just started reading some of the threads and it does not sound nearly as bad as he made it out to be. However, my husband just had his second hip replacement and with my work schedule I do not think I can do it alone. It appears to be glued down everywhere!

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 7:56PM
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I had 2 layers of vinyl glued to the floor and each other and got it off with elbow grease. I linked my thread below showing how I steamed it off.

I didn't have asbestos tiles, but like the others said, if you avoid pulverizing them, it's safe to DIY remove them.

If you choose not to go that route, how much of a height difference are we talking between the rooms? And what material do you plan to put down in the kitchen?

Here is a link that might be useful: steaming off vinyl

    Bookmark   July 25, 2013 at 3:30PM
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There is a small step up now, so I would guess another 3/4 inch? We are going with hardwood or engineered wood.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2013 at 10:09PM
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Asbestos was not just in floor tiles--up to 70% by weight in some cases--but in the mastic used to adhere it and also in vinyl floor tiles and flooring, something that many homeowners are not aware of.

Your vinyl flooring is 1/8" thick, the tile probably 1/4" max. including a thin layer of mastic. Safely removing the existing flooring will reduce the eventual height difference by 1/2".

I'd probably do it as long as proper precautions are taken.

But even in new homes different floor heights are not uncommon. That's what transition thresholds are for.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2013 at 11:16PM
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When we redid our kitchen, we added subfloor radiant heat, which made the kitchen floor about 1/2" higher than the other floors in the house. No big deal. No one notices.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2013 at 3:05PM
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I have floors as much as 3 inches difference in height ... it looks like a convalescent home with all the ramped thresholds.

I'm going to minimize the changes in 2 doorways, but the rest have to stay for now.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2013 at 3:56PM
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