MDF & Plywood Subfloor

I am considering the purchase of a home and need some advice. The subfloor appears to be MDF over plywood. I don't know the thickness of either - short of drilling a hole I don't now how to determine this anyway (I can say that the floors feel very solid). Can I install a (3/4" real wood) hardwood floor over this type of subfloor? Is there any advantage or disadvantage to this type of subfloor? Is the installation a typical nail down? Any advice or consideration given is greatly appreciated.
Also, is MDF over plywood typical? The home was built in 1978.
Leo
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After a trip to the Home Depot I believe the underlayment is Particleboard and not MDF (medium density fiberboard)... they look pretty similar except the Particleboard appears to be made from larger particles.
Leo

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disadvantage
This method of construction was quite common in the 70's in many parts of the USA. Usually 1/2-3/4" plywood and 3/4" particle board. Makes a real strong floor until it gets wet. Then the particle board swells and never returns to normal. Better builders usually provided a layer of plastic between the two layers.
The particle board does not have the nail holding ability of plywood but I can not answer your question about whether or not it would be safe for a nail down HW floor.
--
Colbyt
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<< Can I install a (3/4" real wood) hardwood floor over this type of subfloor?

Probably. But the real wood needs to be well anchored, and plywood IMO has better nail holding ability. Considering your investment in the hardwood plus labor, wouildn't it be just good practice to get rid of the sawdust board? It might even be advantageous to not have to do as much door trimming and such for added height buildup. Just 2 worth...
Joe
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No. Hardwood should not be installed over particle board. Less nail holding power and if it gets wet, you will be installing a new floor.
M Hamlin

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<>typical PB (MDF) underlayment is 5/8">Can I install a (3/4" real wood) hardwood

floor joists. <>if you do not remove the PB you will have height issues in the adjoining rooms and/or stairs.

advice
hardwood. <>this will remove the (future) squeaks. (2" coarse thread screws are another option).
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