|It took a 3/4 inch thick piece of flooring (left) to bring it up to level|
Of itself, this might not be too bad; it could be shimmed and a new floor installed on top. Our challenge, was that this is where floor protection must go for the wood cookstove.
Floor protection guards a combustible floor against the potentially intense heat of a woodstove. Building codes dictate size and thickness, but it can either be installed as part of the floor, or on top of the floor. We built one of cement and brick for our wood heater, though it was more of a hearth, actually. The lady we bought the stove from, gave us everything to go with it. That included a 1 & 1/8 inch thick UL listed, brick pattern cement board to go under the stove.
|Cement board floor protector, |
sitting on top of the old floor
The problem with leaving it on top of the floor, is it's thickness. It sticks out where all the traffic will be, and would be too easy to stub barefoot toes on, or trip over. Because of that, we initially did not plan to use it. Our first idea was to embed ceramic tiles into a new wood plank floor. That was before we realized how serious the dip in the floor was. That dip is probably one of the reasons the old ceramic tiles were in such bad repair, and why Dan wanted nothing to do with ceramic tiles for our new kitchen floor. (The other problem is that the floor joists are on 24 inch centers, which results in a lot of bounce in the floor, though he's taken care of that.)
Tiles under a woodstove would require a cement board base. The cement board available locally, comes in quarter or half inch thicknesses. We questioned whether shimming would be enough to stabilize it, and keep the tiles and mortar secure and intact over time. Because of that, we looked for a way to utilize the brick look floor protector.
Dan finally decided that the thing to do was to tear out that section of the floor, and rebuild it to make it level.
|Tearing out a section of the original floor.|
He also strengthened it by sistering in more joists and adding bridging.
|Sistered, but level joists, bridging, and plywood subfloor|
The new joists were positioned so as to level this section of the floor. He covered the opening with plywood, and put the ready-made floor protector on top of that.
|Floor protector on the rebuilt section of|
floor. The slant is the photographer's fault!
Because the plywood is thinner than the one inch oak flooring there now, the protection pad sits lower than it did before. If all works out according to plan, the plank flooring should be the same height, and the the two floors should be even.
|The stove is in!|
The crowning moment was being able to bring the body of the cookstove in! It's been in Dan's workshop for about a year now.
You may have noticed how far the protector sticks out in front of the stove. I mention this because we looked at a lot of photos where the floor protection only covers the floor directly under the stove. However, it's not uncommon for sparks to come flying out the firebox door when it's opened. I've lived with enough burns on my carpets and floors over the years, that I wanted my floor well protected! The stove manufacturer recommends 18 inches in front of the stove, but we managed 20 & 3/8 inches.
Still to do, is find the box with the plates in it, attach the warming oven and heat shield, and install the stove and chimney pipe. It could also use a good cleaning. Before we lose our mild daytime temps however, I'd like to get the other kitchen window replaced, so finishing the stove will probably wait until after that. At least it's in and it's level!