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Plywood over hardwood in order to achieve carpet?!


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  • Plywood over hardwood in order to achieve carpet?!

    Hey all, new to the forum, so my apologies if im doing this wrong, ill give a little background on the situation as well.

    The wife and I are buying our first house (sick and tired of renting this condo!!) and ill tell you what, we are excited. We have been looking for a year and a half now, and finally found the one. Beautiful little L-Ranch, with a nice lot and pool. Nice finished basement as well (with a kick butt bar in it!) Basically, the house is in pretty good shape (I hope I didn't just jinx myself!) But, there's one major cosmetic problem. A ridiculously ugly aqua green carpet (wall to wall) in the living room. The listing has it as saying hardwood floor underneath all carpets. The 3 bedrooms all have hardwood under it. The kitchen, hallways, and bathroom all have brand new ceramic tile.

    Now heres the problem, during the home inspections, I lifted up a piece of the carpet to see if the floor was underneath it, and what it looked like. Now, it looked like plywood to me (not sub-floor, even though I know they look pretty similar.) They had the carpet held down by small shims with nails going into the carpet, and please forgive me, but I forget if the shims where nailed into the plywood.

    Now, would this be out of the ordinary for someone to do this? Maybe to preserve the hardwood? We decided that after a few weeks of moving in (hopefully end of July) we are ripping up that carpet, and putting the laminate floor down. I was really hoping the hardwood floors would be under there, and if in bad shape, I could sand them down and varnish them like I did at my parents house for them, instead of having to go out and buy and install laminate floors.

    Im not a carpenter or a builder of any sort, but Im not to bad at do it yourself sort of stuff, but this has me perplexed. I couldnt even go in the basement and look to see if I could see nails or not, because its finished, and its not a drop ceiling, but a full regular one (not sure what you would call it haha)

    Hopefully someone here will know what im trying to explain, and maybe be able to give some sort of explanation haha. I cant wait till the end of July to find out for myself, I want to know now haha.

    Thanks in advanced, and I appreciate it. I have a feeling im going to be spending a lot of time on this forum once im officially a homeowner!!

  • #2
    those strips are called nail strips and hold the carpet down in the corners. after the installers stretch the carpet with a kicker they just press the carpet down and the nail strips hold it there. the nail strips can be nailed in the hardwood floor or plywood. would seem a shame to desecrate the hardwood tho. gonna hafta wait and see.


    • #3
      thank you sir!


      • #4
        If there are floor heat registers you can pull one up and look at the floor. If it is hardwood over plywood, you should see the two layers. Each about 3/4" thick. The plywood edge will be obvious, layers of wood. The hardwood should also be obvious as it should be one piece.

        If you don't have floor heat registers, and it was listed as being hardwood floors, I wouldn't worry about it. They can't say it has hardwood if it isn't in this liable world we live in today. Your biggest problem will be the nail holes that are left behind from the tack strips they nailed down into the hardwood floor for the carpet. They usually oxidize and leave a black stain that can't be sanded out completely. Your options are a larger shoe molding (3/4 round) that may cover the nail holes, or you can take the time to drill out each hole with a very small drill bit, and then fill them all prior to refinishing the floor so that they are not obviouse after the fact.

        Good Luck,