Author Topic: brainstorming enclosed patio flooring  (Read 2136 times)

nereo

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brainstorming enclosed patio flooring
« on: March 09, 2014, 03:14:03 PM »
Hello fellow mustachians
The (relatively) warmer weather has me planning my next renovation plan - putting down flooring on our unfinished enclosed patio.  My original plan was to put stone tile down (slate) but many on the John Bridge forum recommended against it because of breakage issues and possible flex in my subfloor. Now I'm "rebooting" and tossing out all preconceived notions and looking for ideas.

The space:
~180 ft2 rectangular enclosed porch area.  It is uninsulated an enclosed room (NO rain or snow gets inside unless it's tracked in on boots).  Subfloor is 3/4" plywood on top of  1x3 wood decking, all of which sits on top of 2x10" joists.  It's "mostly" flat.
One important aspect: even though it is protected from all weather, it's uninsulated, and the space may go from 0F on a cold winter night to 90F on a hot summer day.  That's caused a bit of concern with expansion/contraction.

The vision:
I want this to be a 3-season patio (it's in Canada) that provides some passive-solar heating in the fall/winter.  The porch has a wall of south-facing windows and even with just plywood floors it's frequently 20-30F+ warmer in there than just outside.  During the winter we leave our skis and skates out there - in the summer we want to have a table and chairs to eat out there. We also plan on selling (or renting) in 3-5 years so something that has mass-appeal is important.

The original plan:
Started out with slate tile (because we love the look and because it would provide the dark 'thermal mass' for a little bit of passive-solar.  Upon recommendations we started considering ceramic tile with a slate look (less prone to breaking).  Because of the subfloor, many recommended using Ditra, but I went into a bit of stickershock (~$500 for the underlayment alone).  Now I'm 'rebooting' to see what other mustachians might suggest.  I could do wood decking (but that wouldn't help much with the solar-heating if I understand it right).  Pergo/Laminate often feels & sounds cheap to me. Vinyl would be cheap and easy but I think it might hurt the resale/rental value later.

budget:
under $1,000 for the flooring, all for materials and tools.  I'll be doing this install myself on the weekends.  I have a table saw, chop saw and tile saw already.

so: any options I'm not thinking of? What would you do?
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Re: brainstorming enclosed patio flooring
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2014, 08:12:42 AM »
If the space under the floor is not heated or enclosed with regards to air movement I'd look at something that has some insulation value instead of a hard surface.  Tile or slate that conducts cold down through the floor is going to make the whole room cold.  DIY cork floors might be an option.

nereo

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Re: brainstorming enclosed patio flooring
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2014, 08:43:31 AM »
If the space under the floor is not heated or enclosed with regards to air movement I'd look at something that has some insulation value instead of a hard surface.  Tile or slate that conducts cold down through the floor is going to make the whole room cold.  DIY cork floors might be an option.
Interesting: Maybe I've been looking at this backwards. 
The space below is an uninsulated storage space (I'm already considering insulating the floor under my porch).  It is enclosed from air movement. My thinking and understanding of passive-solar was that during the winter months the sun would shine on dark flooring and heat that up.  That heat would then radiate up (being trapped in my enclosed porch because it has nowhere else to go).
The cork floors I've seen are all very light, and so I figured those wouldn't do much this project. Everything I've read suggests you need something dark with a lot of thermal mass (e.g. stone, concrete, tile, etc).  Doesn't thermodynamics dictate that heat will go up (into my room) while cold will go down?

Or do I have this wrong?
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