What are the good materials for bathroom subflooring? A subfloor is a lower level of flooring installed over wooden joists. In most cases, you’ll find one installed directly over the joists. This creates a flat solid surface for finished flooring to sit on. There are several types of subfloors including plywood, concrete backer board, and cement board. Plywood is the cheapest option, while cement board is the most expensive.
A subfloor’s main purpose is to create a flat solid base for the flooring to rest upon without warping or bucking. If you install tile, laminate, vinyl plank, or hardwood floors, there needs to be a strong base underneath. Plywoods typically refer to wood veneers, but when used for bathroom installations they include an underlayer of concrete backerboard.
Concrete backer board protect the plywood from moisture and prevent bending that leads to cracks in tile and uneven floors, but they do increase costs.
Depending on where you live, you might even need to call a professional installer to do the job correctly.
Choosing Material for Bathroom Subflooring
There are many different materials of subfloors for the bathroom. These include concrete, wood, ceramic tile, vinyl tiles, linoleum, marble, granite, porcelain tile, glass tile, laminate flooring, cork, bamboo and rubber flooring. Each type of subfloor offers certain benefits and drawbacks. For example, some types of subfloors are easier to clean while others require special care. Some offer better sound insulation while others don’t. And each type of subfloor requires specific installation techniques.
Concrete subfloors are one of the most popular choices because they’re easy to install and maintain. Concrete subfloors usually come in either poured or precast form. Poured subfloors are typically installed over a plywood base. Precast concrete floors are usually installed directly over a finished subgrade. Both options provide excellent moisture protection, making them great choices for bathrooms where water damage is common. However, both options can be difficult to repair once damaged.
Wood subfloors are another popular choice. Wood subfloors are generally less expensive than concrete subfloors. They’re also relatively easy to install and maintain, making them ideal for smaller spaces. Wood subfloors can be installed over a variety of bases including concrete, plywood, cement backer board, or even drywall. Like concrete subfloors, wood subfloors can be repaired easily. But like concrete subfloors, they can also become warped over time.
Ceramic tile is another popular option for bathroom subfloors. Ceramic tile is durable, long lasting and easy to install. Because it’s porous, however, it needs to be sealed regularly. Ceramic tile also tends to crack over time. This makes it an ideal choice for areas prone to high humidity.
Vinyl tile is another popular choice for bathroom subfloors because it’s affordable, easy to install and easy to repair. Vinyl tile is also resistant to scratches, stains and wear. Unfortunately, it doesn’t hold up well against moisture. If exposed to excessive amounts of moisture, it can warp and peel away.
Laminate flooring is another popular choice for bathrooms. Laminate flooring is inexpensive and easy to install. It’s also very durable and scratch resistant. However, laminates tend to expand and contract over time. As a result, they must be glued down firmly to prevent warping.
Marble is another popular choice for bathtubs and showers. Marble is extremely hard and dense, making it ideal for areas where heavy foot traffic is expected. It’s also highly resistant to staining and scratching. Unfortunately, marble is also quite costly.
Bathroom flooring is a big decision. There are many options available, from vinyl tile to hardwood floors. But before you go shopping, take a look at the pros and cons of each type of flooring to find the best subfloor for bathroom. Then, once you’ve made your choice, consider installing a waterproof membrane underlayment first. This will protect your new flooring from moisture damage and extend its lifespan.