If you want your flooring to last, you need the right subfloor. It’s commonly understood that the foundation of your home needs to be solid for your home to remain in good repair. We like to think of subflooring as the foundation of your floor, and it works the same way!
What Exactly IS Subflooring?
We don’t want to bore you with too many technicalities, but of course you can always get in touch with us if you want more details! Subflooring is the layer of your floor that sits directly on the joists. The common and preferred material used for subflooring are ½ – ¾ inch thick plywood, but OSB (oriented strand board – an engineered type of wood) is very common as well. Additonally, there are other options (particularly: HardieBacker is common for tile floors). These are nailed, or even better screwed, directed into the joists to create a uniform platform for your flooring to be build onto.
If you have an older home that has never had a major renovation your subfloor might be a bit different. It is common to see subflooring that consists of plank between 6-10 inches wide that are installed diagonally. These are typically replaced with a modern subfloor at the same time a new floor is put in.
We rarely see it in Texas due to our warm climate, but radiant heat subflooring does exist. About two weeks out of every year this seems like a great idea to us! If we had long & cold winters this would be an amazing upgrade to a new floor install!
Is There Always a Subfloor?
Not always. It is possible to install some types of flooring directly to a concrete slab. There are some advantages to this such as not having to worry about adjusting door clearance heights. However, it is not suitable for all flooring types.
Sometimes more than one type of subfloor is combined. What type or types are used is determined by the specific home & type of foundation, the climate, the type of floor to be installed. For example, non-ceramic tile floors require the most rigid subflooring to protect them from cracking under the pressure of normal use.
At Flohr our team is experienced with a wide range of flooring and the best practice for installation of each one. We take our local climate into consideration as well because Austin is unique in every way! Give us a call, we can help you choose the best flooring for your home.