The Old Fashioned Way.
Years ago the only method of
installing traditional 3/4" hardwood on concrete was the sleeper
method. Rarely used in residential today, this method created
problems with overall finished floor height. Notice illustration
#1 to the right.
By using the sleeper method,
which are 2' x 4's placed on their side, plus 3/4"
hardwood, your final floor height reaches a whopping two and one
quarter inches! Planned properly from the pre construction phase
it could work, but we find this method outdated. Adding to
disadvantages was the feel underfoot as they would often sound
clunky for lack of a better description.
3/4" Plywood Fastened on
Shown in illustration #2 is
the norm for solid hardwood on concrete in our region. Gone are
the bulky sleepers replaced by 3/4" CDX plywood attached to the
concrete with special concrete fasteners (tapcons). Not
shown is #15 asphalt felt paper and 6 mil visqueen (poly film)
placed on top of the concrete prior to fastening the plywood.
Considerations To Think
When considering solid 3/4"
hardwoods on concrete in Florida planning well ahead of time
should be considered. As mentioned on previous pages this type
of application can cause problems with existing construction. In
review they are:
|• Existing doors/swings may be
|• Appliances could be locked in
|• Transition to other floor
|• Baseboard should be removed and
Exceptions That May Work
For installations with stone
or marble flooring, the plywood method may actually be
beneficial. Reasons being, stone and marble work require
absolute level installations. Often the floor height is
increased substantially when these types of floor coverings are
used. In some cases adding plywood and hardwood allows for a
smooth transition from one floor to another; they becomes flush
with one another.
Hardwoods Are The Answer
I know what some are
thinking. "Yuck, engineered, you mean that laminate looking
hardwoods have come a long way over the last decade. Today
there are many
choices to consider.