Hardwood Flooring

The wood flooring in my parents kitchen was refinished one to many times and they now have to replace the floor.
They have hired a contractor and he has suggested that they install the new tongue & groove hardwood flooring directly over the old hardwood flooring. My parents have told me that the contractor will be installing the new floor perpendicular to the old floor. The contractor has told them that this is perfectly fine. I think that this is a classic cross grain situation and when the floor tries to move they will end up with a horrible mess.
What does the contractor know that I don't?
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His business.
dave
Gren wrote:
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cross-grain is probably ok from an installation standpoint, but I think the issue could be the final direction of grain relative to the room. As I understand it, the grain (and thus the boards) should run parallel to the long wall in the room. If the kitchen is square, then it may not be an issue. I have also heard that the boards ought to be run perpendicular to a wall that has a window.
Putting down new flooring perpendicular to the existing hardwood may violate these esthetically pleasing rules of thumb.
mjbrna
Gren wrote:

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You've made a good point. To satisfy aesthetics AND proper construction technique, might require either the ripping up of the first hardwood floor, or the laying down of plywood, which would cause that new floor to ride pretty darn high!
EmbErna wrote:

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I would want the old stuff ripped out. Will the increased height of the floor bother them? Or the loss of ceililng height? One thing that will certainly bug them is the counter tops will suddenly be 3/4 inch lower. And so will the sink. This is the situation in my kitchen right now. There is little substitute for the joys of doing something the hard way.
John
Gren wrote:

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I agree, tear the old stuff out. If it isn't removed their will be substantial problems. The base underneath will move seasonally. Seasonal movement will affect how well the nails hold down the new floor, think of how small of an area the nails are getting their purchase on in the new floor, probably a little less than a 1/4 inch on the bottom portion of the groove. The other problem is the greater height, you now have an additional 3/4 inch on top and the transition mouldings from the adjascent flooring will be substantial. If the flooring guy suggested that your parents put this down over the old floor, I would wonder why he was not inclined to remove the old floor. Is he telling them what he thinks they want to hear? Is he too lazy to remove the old stuff? Either way, I would be looking for a second opinion and possibly a different floor guy.
Blair

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