My Old House Online

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My first project is the bathrooms. Only one full bath and one half bath are functional. One of the full baths on the second floor needs a drain pipe replaced, the pipe that runs from the second floor to the basement. It looks like we will be opening part of the kitchen wall for this repair.

The full bath on the third floor hasn’t been used for 45 years. I turned on the water to that bathroom but I barely got a trickle. And the drains are completely clogged. That tub was replaced in 1960. But I'm told the sink and toilet are original from 1897. I think the wise thing to do is to take up the floor and replace all the plumbing in that bathroom.


That bathroom floor may be a problem. Originally I thought it was a linoleum sheet. But after closer inspection, it turns out to be some sort of poured floor. It’s about ¾” thick. If anyone has experience in removing such a floor, I would sure like to hear about it.

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Comment by John Rodgers on August 27, 2009 at 4:35pm
seems fairly common in my area (though only on first floors) that a self-leveling cement was poured to either 'modernize' the look of the interior space, or otherwise level wooden floors that had began to buckle or were damaged in other manners. Not that it's impossible, but I haven't seen anyone around here that has managed to salvage the original flooring after removal.

If you're not concerned about knicks and'or gouges to the wood floor beneath, the quickest removal method I can think of would be the large demolition bits that can be attached to a hammer drill. Essentially it's a large chisel that you don't have to hammer endlessly. It looks like you have it already opened up in one section, so you can lay the bit at a slight angle to the wood flooring and start chipping away.

On another note, the bare trickle of water could be as simple of a fix as a clogged connection line running to the faucet. I thought my washer was starting to go because I barely had a trickle in and took forever to fill--turns out after years of not being used (the home was vacant for 10-15 years), there had been some sediment buildup in the filter screens both in the washer as well as in the connection lines.
Comment by James Kabler on August 27, 2009 at 5:57pm
This isn't cement. It's some sort of hard rubber. The baseboards are of the same material and molded right in with the floor.

The hole you see in the picture is where the sink pedistal was. Seems the floor was poured after the sink was installed, but before the toilet. I had to chisel around it to get it out.

I figured chiseling would be the best way. But I thought it might be a good idea to hear the voice of experience first.
Comment by John Rodgers on August 28, 2009 at 8:33am
How difficult was it to remove with a chisel...does it break apart fairly easily? You may be able to manually remove the majority of it, and sand any residual pieces down to salvage the wood floor without damaging them.. What you have is definitely a new one for me...

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