Plywood For Bathroom Floor: A Complete Guide And Tips

The use of plywood for bathroom floors has been around as it is still the top choice of homeowners. This gives your bathroom floor long-lasting properties. Also, allow the tile floor to stick very tightly. Although made of wood material, plywood comes with some waterproof features.

Plywood primarily serves as a subfloor for bathroom floors. In this case, you should not think of anything other than plywood. So, choosing a good one for the bathroom is an essential fact. Not all plywoods are indeed suitable for bathroom use. Therefore, you have to be smart to choose the right one.

This article is arranged with some factors that will give you a clear idea about plywood for the bathroom floor. The types, the method of installation, and much more, including ways to avoid potential mistakes in choosing it. Hopefully, you will know everything about plywood for the bathroom floor.

5 Best Plywood For Bathroom Floor That Lasts Longer:

Since not all types of plywood can be used for the bathroom floor, you need to research a few styles to choose the best one. All are pretty waterproof but not suitable for use on bathroom floors as they have high humidity. Find out the right one: 

1. AC Plywood

If you think about ceramic tiling on your bathroom floor, AC plywood would be best for subflooring. This allows the tiles to sit evenly and firmly without any damage. Also, this plywood does not bend easily, so the bond of your tile is always intact.

It is recommended to use a 3/4 inch thick layer of AC plywood for ceramic tiles. It gives you a perfect bathroom floor gift by adjusting the floor.

2. Tongue And Groove Plywood

This plywood type is widely used for various woodwork, including bathroom floors. It also works well for stone flooring. However, tongue and groove plywood has to be used with a much thicker layer than others. It has a waterproof finish.

Since stone floor tiles are heavier than other floors, you can choose tongue and groove as strong plywood to carry it. A 15/32-inch thick layer is usually recommended for use in subfloors.

3. Marine Plywood

Marine plywood is well known in the market as the most expensive option. Not only on the bathroom floor, but you can also use it on the outdoor floor as it adapts easily to any weather. This is why marine plywood is one of the best choices used for bathroom floors.

Plywood that is moisture and waterproof should be chosen for the bathroom floor. Marine plywood undoubtedly comes with these features. So this may be your best choice for the bathroom floor.

4. Exterior Plywood

One of the best choices for bathroom floors is exterior plywood because it never comes in contact with moisture. It is especially effective as a hardwood surface for the bathroom subfloor. You can use this not only for the bathroom floors but also for floors exposed to frequent moisture.

No matter what tile you use on the bathroom floor, this plywood can ensure any tile’s firm and stable position. It has a water-resistant coating that will never allow it to be damaged by water.

5. Boiling Water Proof Plywood

This plywood can withstand prolonged exposure to moisture, although it is a bit more expensive. BWP is one of the best quality and waterproof alternatives. Therefore, it is a good option for the bathroom floor. Not only for the bathroom floor, but it is also used a lot in making different furniture.

Experts recommend BWP plywood for use in bathrooms because it is highly waterproof. Water and moisture-resistant plywood stay on the bathroom floor for a long time. So choose the best without considering the price.

How To Install Plywood On Bathroom Floor: 7 Steps To Go

There is a tricky method to install plywood on the bathroom floor. So

You have to go through a precision procedure to do this with the utmost efficiency. The seven practical steps will allow you to complete the method smoothly.

Step 1: Gather Essential Equipment

To begin installing plywood, you need to assemble some essential tools. Some of these tools can be a bit expensive. The equipment will help you to complete the whole process quickly and efficiently. Keep the following tools in your collection:

  • Miter saw
  • Nailer
  • Spacers
  • Tape measure
  • Underlay
  • Sandpaper

Step 2: Make A Calculation

To complete the first step of installing plywood, you need to make an accurate calculation. If your bathroom is small, you can choose full-length plywood. In the case of large bathrooms, some parts need to be added. Decide at the outset how much plywood you need.

The idea is to use a few pieces of plywood for the bathroom, as modern-day bathrooms are pretty significant. It will also determine the number of your expenses. Cut the plywood to the same size with a miter saw.

Step 3: Prepare Your Bathroom Floor

Remove everything from the bathroom floor so that the space is empty entirely. You need to make sure that the floor is perfectly level. If you want to replace the subfloor, ensure that the previous floor has been adequately removed.

If the plywood surface is not level, the tile floor will remain uneven. After preparing the place where the plywood will be placed, put these symbolically and see how it fits. Separate the parts that fit.

Step 4: Lay And Attach Plywood

Now place the plywoods one on top of the other and lay them on the floor to make them evenly spaced. Start the work from one end of the wall. Once all the parts have been installed, they need to be attached. There must be an equal distance between each one.

You can use a thinner object as the distance will not be too much. If you have an old credit card in your home, keep it as long as you can keep the distance. Place it between two plywoods and measure the exact distance among all.

Step 5: Use Sandpaper

If you’ve ever used plywood before, you probably know it’s not always smooth. So, when you think of using it in the bathroom, you must smooth it out because you will probably do tiling on it. By rubbing with sandpaper, you try to make the surface as smooth as possible.

Plywood should not have any rough and uneven places, so you will not feel comfortable tiling. Use sandpaper on all its unstable parts to make it flawless and smooth.

Step 6: Add A Floor Vent

A floor vent is essential on any bathroom floor that helps flush the bathroom shower water. Therefore, do not cover the bathroom subfloor at all. When you cut the plywood into equal sizes to install it, cut a portion to fit the floor vent size instead of the drainage system.

Since the floor is slightly sloping, it needs to be installed at the slope’s edge. For now, leave the space blank as a plywood preparation. When installing a tile or stone floor, finally install the vent on the floor.

Step 7: Attach Cement Backerboard When Necessary

When you use plywood on a bathroom floor as a subfloor, you need to use a cement backer board as part of the preparation so that the tile sits nicely on top of it. Placing the cement backer board on the plywood will make the tiling easier.

Use several nails to hold it tightly to the cement board regularly. The purpose of placing a cement board is to prevent the plywood from moving under the floor, so your main floor is always intact.

5 Mistakes You Should Avoid While Choosing Plywood For The Bathroom Floor:

There are some common mistakes that you usually make when choosing plywood for the bathroom floor. These mistakes should be avoided as much as possible if you expect perfect bathroom flooring. 

1. Not Doing The Market Research

Purchasing plywood with proper research is another extreme mistake. To choose a quality one, you must have a decent idea about the market. One should not make emotional choices based solely on the advice of others.

Don’t take any shopkeeper’s advice as final. Enough for you. Enough for you. Research on different plywoods and their prices. To get a good one, you also consider the brand.

2. Choosing A Wrong Plywood

There are many types of plywood on the market, but you may be wrong in choosing the right one for the bathroom. Many common plywoods are not suitable for bathroom use, such as hardwood plywood.

Although lots of wood is used for work, it is not enough for the bathroom subwoofer. In this case, you need to use plywood that can fight moisture and last a long time in high humidity areas. There are several plywood conventions for use on wet floors that you need to pick.

3. Not Considering The Quality

Plywood comes at different prices depending on the quality. Choosing a less expensive option is a big mistake if you do not consider the cost. Cheap plywood never gives stability to the floor. It also often releases toxic chemicals that are harmful to health.

You should not compromise on price when choosing plywood for the bathroom floor. Strong Robust Waterproof plywood doesn’t usually come at a low cost, but it does allow your flooring to survive year after year.

4. Not Calculating Properly

Plywood is undoubtedly an expensive material. Therefore, it is foolish to waste money buying extra from the needy. It happens due to a lack of proper calculation. Before buying plywood, you need to make a faultless calculation of how much you need.

Excessive plywood will be left unused in your home if purchased without proper calculation. It is a waste of money. It’s not that there will be more. Failure to purchase the prescribed amount may result in less than the required amount. It may interfere with the work.

5. Not Looking For A Reputed Brand

Many people make mistakes like buying non-branded plywood, which is not desirable. People think that famous brands are always expensive. The choice of plywood for the bathroom floor should consider the quality and the brand and considerations.

Think about why a brand survives year after year with a reputation. Moreover, the top brands have an idea about the budget and demand of the users, so you can expect to get quality plywood within your budget.

5 Tips To Choose The Perfect Plywood For The Bathroom Floor:

Here are some tips to help you choose the suitable plywood for your bathroom floor. These will also help you to avoid small mistakes.

Tip 1: Get From A Reputed Brand

Be sure to pick well-known brands for plywood. To get a better one for the bathroom floor, you need to survive one of the top brands. Most of the local plywood is not of good quality.

Tip 2: Water-Resistant Coating

Plywood is an extensive choice when it comes to making your floor waterproof. The plywood used for the bathroom floor must be highly waterproof. Exterior and marine plywoods are the best options in this case.

Tip 3: Do Not Allow Plywood Compression-expansion 

You should not choose plywood that may shrink or expand. Such things weaken the foundation of your upper floor. Also, the subfloor can be destroyed very quickly. Use the plywood recommended in the article.

Tip 4: Check Customer Testimonials

Customers must always be satisfied with using a good brand of plywood. The right way to pick quality plywood is to check the customers’ testimonials. Choose the one for which you get the most positive feedback.

Tip 5: Check For The Core Gaps

It is essential to examine the core gaps. Perfect plywood will have no visible cracks or overlapping layers. Plywood with core gaps must be discarded to ensure flawless bathroom flooring.

Related Questions About Using Plywood For Bathroom Floor:

Can You Use Plywood As A Subfloor In A Bathroom?

One of the best options for bathroom subfloor is plywood, also called enhanced plywood. It holds firmly in places full of high humidity, so it is a good choice when choosing a perfect one for the bathroom floor. Some special plywoods as subfloors are expensive; they perform much better than OSB.

Plywoods are more likely to be damaged if exposed directly to water, but they also retain moisture because they have a waterproof coating. Since these will be used as the subfloors, only moisture can reach it that it can quickly suppress.

How Do You Waterproof A Bathroom Floor Plywood?

Plywoods usually used in bathroom floors are often treated with a waterproof coating. You can also make it more waterproof by yourself for extra security. First, make the surface as flat as possible by sanding and removing the dirt. Apply to the surface of a high-strength waterproof sealant. 

Just one layer will not be very effective; you need to apply a 2/3 layer coat and wait till it dries completely. Paint after making sure it is dry. Hopefully, it will be waterproof enough. In addition, after installing the cement backer board, some potential leak points are created by nailing. You can seal them.

How Thick Should The Plywood Be For A Bathroom Floor?

Plywood demands a specific thickness for use in the bathroom. In the case of exterior grade, the use of at least ⅝” inches thick is recommended. Plywood is used as wide enough because it has to retain moisture for a long time. Homeowners usually want to use a bathroom flooring for years if it is not damaged.

Its thickness also depends on which plywood you are using. If you use less than the required thickness, it will retain moisture for only a short time. Added to the plywood floor is a cement backboard of about ½” inches. It strengthens the position of the tile.

Is Plywood Good For The Bathroom Floor?

Plywood is a fantastic choice for bathroom flooring. You can use it as the primary flooring of the bathroom if water is not used constantly there. Waterproof plywood usually retains moisture but can be damaged by direct contact with water. So, you can choose plywood for the bathroom floor.

Although water is used directly on the bathroom floor, water does not usually reach the subfloor. Water is not commonly used on the main foundations of some public bathrooms. So, the plywood can be used on these floors.

What Is Waterproof Plywood For The Bathroom Floor?

Marine plywood, exterior plywood, AC plywood, and Tongue and Groove plywood are all suitable for use on the bathroom floor as they are waterproof. Waterproof plywood refers to the one that is moisture resistant.

Plywood is usually not 100% waterproof. No matter how hard it is processed, it will be damaged by water. The bathroom floor has high humidity but does not allow direct water to enter, so waterproof plywood is suitable for the bathroom ground. Several unsightly plywoods are used for bathroom floors with high moisture-resistant properties. 

Is Plywood Or OSB Better For A Bathroom Subfloor?

Compared to plywood and OSB, plywood is considered suitable for floors. According to most construction workers, it is easy to install. Also, it guarantees a more robust and secure subfloor than OSB. Although OSB is cheaper than plywood, it should not be your choice for the bathroom subfloor.

It is sufficient to use 5/6 “thick plywood in the subfloor. If you choose OSB, you should use at least 15/32” thick. Moreover, its nail holding capacity is less than that of plywood. Therefore, plywood is better in terms of convenience.

Final Verdict:

Plywood outperforms other components in terms of convenience for the bathroom floor. You can use waterproof plywood for the bathroom floor, just not as a subfloor but also on the kitchen floor. It can withstand long-term moisture that other flooring materials are not capable of.

Before using plywood in the bathroom, you should have ideas about the different options. There are some high moisture-resistant plywoods on the market. They are perfect to use on the bathroom floor. Although these are expensive, you should never go for cheap alternatives.

You can also read:

Old Bathroom Floor Tiles: A Guide To Revive Bathroom Floor

Why Is My Spray Mop Leaking?

Bathroom Floor Drain: [All You Need To Know]

Jahidul Alam

Hello dear! This is Jahidul Alam. I am the admin of this Tidy Floor. I have been in the floor cleaning business for the last 20 years. My business is all about ensuring affordable flooring cleaning services for Americans.

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