Ask the Remodeler: Can you add laminate tiles over marble ones?

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Q. We have pink 12-by-12 marble tiles in both of our bathrooms. We’d like to put in laminate vinyl flooring, like Coretec. If the marble tile is in good shape, can we install the laminate vinyl over it? I’m assuming it’s pretty costly to have the marble removed first.


A. If the tiles are sound and solid, yes you can put Coretec or any other vinyl laminate flooring over your marble tiles. The vinyl ones are rated for baths. Be aware that you will need to pull the toilet up in order to place the vinyl tile under it. Be sure your cuts are as precise as possible and all of the edges are sealed from water. These vinyl laminates are rated for water on top of them, but you don’t want it getting in on the edges.


Q. Other than wood, what can we use for a ceiling material? The room we are wondering about is enclosed with sliding glass doors on three sides, with full insulation in the walls and between the glass doors and the ceiling. We used to have a suspended ceiling of 2-by-4 feet, but it sagged and needed to be removed. We are thinking about doing a tray ceiling (obviously not with drywall) that can be plastered and painted. Not looking to go crazy here, but wood is overdone, and since the walls are paneled (which we are going to scuff and paint), a wood ceiling would be overkill.


A. This is kind of a question of personal taste, but I would agree with you: You probably don’t want a wood ceiling with paneled walls. For a sunroom, my recommendation would be a board-and-plaster ceiling with a nice crown molding and recessed lights to show off the space. Although somewhat formal, a coffered ceiling might also work. If that’s your choice, you will place strapping under a wallboard and plaster ceiling and then install a coffered ceiling over that. Coffered ceilings are very simple and look quite nice. It may be a little formal for what sounds like a sunroom. I would not consider a tin ceiling in a sunroom, however, because that would look even more formal.


Q. On two separate occasions in the past month, we have heard scratching noises that seem to come from inside the wall in the back of our house on the second floor. This happens at night. We have no idea where to start to address this concern and would appreciate your guidance.


A. It sounds as if you have a critter problem, Racoons or squirrels would be my guess. I would suggest calling a qualified pest control company to evaluate and possibly set traps.

Mark Philben is the project development manager at Charlie Allen Renovations in Cambridge. Send your questions to [email protected]. Questions are subject to editing. Subscribe to our free real estate newsletter at Follow us on FacebookLinkedInInstagram, and Twitter @globehomes.