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Concrete Slab Under Stove

Question: Today I ripped out all the tiles in my apartment's kitchen in preparation for installing my laminate floor. They came out easily, but under the stove I discovered I don't have a floor. Instead, I have a thick slab of concrete or cement board, apparently resting directly on the joists and sticking up about 3/4 inch above the planks of the floor around it.

Maybe stoves in 1901 (when this building was built) sent so much heat toward the floor that this was thought desirable, but it certainly isn't needed today, and I'm not sure what to do now. The goal was to add another electrical circuit, lay down a laminate floor in a few hours, buy a new stove, and finally be done with this unending renovation. With a crowbar or come-along I could probably get this thing up, but then I'd have bare joists and have to install a wood floor just to cover it up with the laminate floor, (plus I'd have a slab of concrete a yard square to carry down four flights of stairs). Or I could put the laminate floor on top of the slab and slice off the top layer of laminate to trim the "riser" part of the slab. This would leave the stove up in the air an inch or so, as it was before, and it would look OK, but it would limit a future owner's ability to move the stove. Any ideas?

Answer: Consider, that the slab might be asbestos! It was common to use asbestos to insulate against potential fire hazards, so you have to be careful about breaking it up.

I would lay the laminate on top of the slab and use a laminate stair nose molding, if the size is right or another molding to hide the edge.

 

 

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