I live in a British late 1900s semi detached house that I assume would have had floorboards originally. However it seems that these have been replaced by Chipboard. This doesnt seem very sturdy and I was going to replace. What would be the best type of wood to use to replace the old chipboard?

  • You're talking sub floor here right?
    – Tester101
    Dec 21, 2011 at 13:18
  • What do you mean by Sub Floor? Basically underneath is the bare earth and brickwork. This floor is screwed to joists.
    – Keef10
    Dec 21, 2011 at 13:26
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    Are you installing directly to the floor joists? Do you intend to put a second 1/4" subfloor for the flooring such as sheet goods or tile? or are you going to install something like hardwood? Need to know what you intend to do as a finish floor in order to correctly advise. Dec 21, 2011 at 13:31
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    A sub floor is the floor, beneath the floor. Basically if you're looking at joists, you need to install a sub floor. You'll install your tile, carpet, hardwood, etc over the sub floor.
    – Tester101
    Dec 21, 2011 at 13:35
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    @Tester101: Sorry to disagree, but depending on what is going down, an underlayment is often necessary. For example, ceramic tile should be installed over Hardy Backer or concrete board. Vinyl or fiberglass sheet goods should be installed over a 1/4" A or B grade plywood or Lauan. Carpet and hardwoods can be installed over a single 3/4" subfloor. Dec 21, 2011 at 13:42

1 Answer 1


Sub Floor

Sub floor material can depend on what type of floor is going to be installed on top of it, and the joist spacing.

Typically if the joists are 16" on center (OC) or less, you can use 5/8" tongue and groove plywood glued and screwed to the joists. larger joist spacing calls for 3/4" tongue and groove plywood, again glued and screwed to the joists.

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If the flooring material of choice is a heavy tile, you'll want to use 3/4" tongue and groove plywood even with 16" OC joists.


Depending on what type of floor covering you've chosen, an underlayment may also be necessary.

If you are planning on installing carpet, no extra materials are required.

If you plan to install hardwood flooring, you can use felt or rosin paper as an underlayment (though not all installers use it).

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If you are installing laminate flooring, you should use a foam underlayment.

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If you are going to install tile, you'll want to use a concrete board or similar material on top of the sub floor.

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If you want to install vinyl or fiberglass sheeting, you should use 1/4" Lauan as an underlayment.

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  • 2
    Yes it is the sub floor. An i intend putting either carpet or similar over the top. The problem with the Chipboard is that it has been chipped. I suspect somebody used a cheap alternative that didn't work correctly. Thanks for your time.
    – Keef10
    Dec 21, 2011 at 13:37
  • great edit. nice pics Dec 21, 2011 at 14:39

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