How to Remove Laminate Flooring [Answered]
Laminate flooring is a beautiful, long-lasting option that is also simple to install.
This type of flooring is a low-cost option that is also quite useful and long-lasting.
In recent years, laminate flooring has gained in popularity as the quality, practicality, and price of these floors have all increased.
Sales of laminate flooring are expected to continue to grow steadily over the next five years, owing to its increasing appeal in new construction and refurbishment applications.
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A Brief Overview of the Past
Laminate flooring originally appeared on the market in 1977 as a cost-effective alternative to hardwood floors.
Perstorp, a Swedish business, recovered waste wood through the use of high pressure and heat to create a floor covering that is both durable and simple to install.
Shaw, Armstrong, Mohawk, and Dupont are some of the most well-known laminate flooring manufacturers in the world today.
Laminate flooring panels are made out of a particleboard wood foundation with a design overlayer and a final transparent seal layer on top of it.
Although they have the appearance of real wood, they are a fraction of the price of real hardwood flooring.
They are water-resistant and durable, and they are available in a variety of finishes and thicknesses, all of which have an impact on the cost and longevity of the floor.
They have gained popularity as an affordable and long-lasting alternative to natural wood floors because of their aesthetic appeal.
Because each plank has the appearance of real wood, they provide the appearance of wood flooring without the expense or installation requirements associated with hardwood flooring, for example.
There are several disadvantages to laminate flooring, even if it is sturdy enough to be used in everyday situations.
These disadvantages include the inability to refinish the surface and the susceptibility to water damage.
The replacement of laminate that is peeling up, has mounding in certain spots, has extensive scratches, or has water damage is recommended.
It is reasonable to expect laminate flooring to last between 15 and 25 years on average before it needs to be replaced with new flooring.
Learning how to remove laminate flooring is a reasonably simple process that only presents a minor challenge.
When compared to hardwood floors, laminate flooring is noted for its ease of installation, and tearing each plank back out is a simple flooring project when compared to hardwood floors.
This method will assist you in getting those planks pried up in no time and with the least amount of fuss, so saving you time and money.
Continuing reading this tutorial will teach you how to remove laminate flooring and finish your do-it-yourself project.
What are the advantages of removing your own laminate flooring?
The main advantage of doing laminate flooring removal yourself is, of course, the money you will save.
However, there are other advantages as well, such as gaining confidence in learning new skills as well as reaping the rewards of looking at your finished product with pride after completing the task yourself.
Notably, when you purchase the tools for the task, you can use them for future projects because you will still have them.
Furthermore, the cost of the tools may even be less than the quotation you received to have the floor removed by a professional business in the first place.
As for the tools you will need, here is a list of everything you will require.
Is your laminate flooring glued down or does it have a floating appearance?
If your flooring is more than a decade old, it is most likely bonded laminate.
Floors that are more recent in construction are more likely to be floating.
In a glued laminate floor, the planks are adhered to the subfloor (and, in certain cases, to one another) with glue, as you might expect from the name.
Because glue-down laminate flooring cannot be reused, it is a little easier to remove; there is no need to be as careful with the planks as there is with loose-lay laminate flooring.
Floating laminate flooring, on the other hand, is not attached to the subfloor because the laminate boards are floating above it.
Instead, the flooring is supported by a foam cushion that allows it to “float.”
Using a tongue and groove structure, the boards are held together.
There is no use of adhesive.
Instead, a sealing substance is used to keep the boards from coming apart.
Following the application of the sealant to the plank edges, the planks are snapped together.
This sort of laminate flooring is frequently referred to as “snap-together” laminate flooring.
It is possible to repurpose the planks from floating laminate floors; therefore, you will want to remove them with caution.
Using the right tools, you can remove laminate flooring.
- Safety eyewear is required.
- Pry bar Pliers Protective footwear
- Pry bar Pliers
- a scraper for the floor (if glue is used)
- the usage of a heat gun (if glue is used)
Before you begin, consider the following:
Make sure to clear away all of the furniture from the room so that you have easy access to the floor.
To reuse laminate flooring, it is recommended that you first clean it well and carefully lift it up, taking care not to mark the surface of the laminate flooring.
Don’t forget to put your safety first.
Wear protective clothes wherever possible, especially around your eyes and hands, as splinters are prevalent during floor removals, and it is important to keep your hands covered to avoid being cut by the sharp edges of the wooden planks that are being removed.
Cleaning and Preparing to Take Out Laminate Flooring Planks
Make a Clean Break in the Room
There are a couple of things you should accomplish before starting the task.
1. In order to begin your project, you must first remove all of the furniture from the room in order to make room for it. It will make the job a whole lot easier.
Transition Pieces should be removed.
If there are any wood transition strips covering the transition from one type of flooring to another, such as vinyl flooring or carpet, the laminate strips should be removed first, followed by the vinyl or carpet transition strips.
With a powerful putty knife or a little pry bar, you can easily remove the transition strips molding from the wall.
If they are screwed in place, you will need to use an electric screwdriver to remove them.
Additional ornamental molding from the laminate‘s edge should be removed if needed.
Remove any molding tracks from the floor by unscrewing them and lifting them up.
Vents and baseboards should be removed.
Remove any in-floor heating duct covers that may be present.
Then, from the area where the flooring is installed in the room, remove the baseboards.
A utility knife can be used to cut through any paint that is connected to the wall at the top of the baseboard and baseboard trim.
You can also use a chisel to cut the wood.
Placing the pry bar between the wall and the baseboard and pulling the baseboard away from the wall is recommended.
Remove any projecting nails if there are any.
If you plan to reuse the baseboards, make sure to name them on the backside with the region of the room and wall from which they were taken from.
Following the reinstallation of your floor, it will be much simpler to replace them.
Procedure for Removing Laminate Flooring (Step by Step Instructions)
This will not be a lengthy part because, as previously stated, this is a relatively simple task.
You only need to read this brief “how to” from Reference.com if your laminate floor is one of the minority of flooring that are made up of glued-down tiles.
Here’s how to make floating floors disappear if you have them installed.
1. Take out transition pieces that connect laminate floors to other types of flooring by going under them with the flat edge of a pry bar and lifting the piece with one hand as you continue to work your way down the bottom with the bar.
2. Remove the u-tracks that the transition pieces were snapped into and begin removing the flooring at one of the walls that the materials are running parallel to.
Use the 14″ gap at the edge to get your fingers or a tool beneath the first board of the flooring installation.
3. Elevate the first board 30 to 45 degrees above the second piece and pull it away from it.
4. Continue until the first row of laminate is gone, and then move on to the second and subsequent rows of laminate to complete the removal.
5. If the boards were bonded together, they will not come apart easily, so raise a foot or two of flooring and pull it toward you to break it apart as much as possible.
6. Removing residual glue from the subfloor using a floor scraper or an orbital sander is recommended, but you can also heat it with a heat gun to soften it before scraping it is also recommended.
Removal of Glued Laminate Flooring from Concrete
It is possible to get laminate flooring in a variety of shapes and forms, including tiled vinyl floors, linoleum, glue-down strips, and floating wood-like planks that are installed directly on top of the subfloor.
While removing the laminate floor from the concrete floor, the goal is to complete the process as quickly and smoothly as possible in order to move on to the remodeling phase rather than wasting time on the deconstruction.
So, what is the best method for removing glued laminate flooring from concrete?
Start by saturating the laminate floor with a warm water solution.
In order to soften the glue, both heat and water must be applied simultaneously.
The glue is water-soluble until it hardens.
Using a pry bar or a putty knife, peel the laminate planks away from the wall.
As an alternative, an oscillating multitool with a floor scraper attachment might be utilized.
Heat the adhesive underneath the material with a heat gun to remove any glue residue, which will aid in the removal of the tile.
In general, how long does laminate flooring that has been glued to the subfloor last?
In order to create a laminate floor, multiple thin layers of material must be pushed together.
It has a patterned paper layer on top of it, which is protected by a clear coating.
However, despite the fact that high-quality laminate flooring can survive for more than 20 years, it will not outlast a hardwood floor.
Laminate flooring has an average life lifetime of 15 to 25 years, although it can last as short as 10 years or as long as 30 years depending on the manufacturer.
The quality of the flooring (including whether or not it was correctly put) and the amount of use it receives all have an impact on how long it will remain in place.
It’s most noticeable on engineered wood floors in particular.
Poor cleaning, the use of abrasive cleansers, or the failure to remove stains can all shorten the life of a wood floor.
Engineered hardwood flooring, on the other hand, has the potential to endure up to 75 years if properly maintained.
Laminate flooring, on the other hand, does not have the same longevity.
It also cannot be sanded and refinished in the same way that a wood floor can. Once the upper surface has been worn away, it is important to replace it.
Removal of Glued Laminate Flooring from Concrete – Various Methods
The planks of “cemented” laminate flooring are glued together rather than to the floor, which makes for a more stable floor.
There are a variety of methods for removing laminate flooring.
It is feasible to manually pry the laminate planks out of the way.
The glue in the tile, on the other hand, could seep through the planks and connect them to the plywood subfloor beneath them, which could cause problems.
In this case, melting the adhesive or utilizing a motorized floor scraper to remove the laminate flooring are both viable options to consider.
1. A Floating Floor System
Floating laminate flooring is the easiest type of flooring to remove because it is not attached to the ground and is simply snapped together.
Before removing the flooring, remove the baseboard trim around the perimeter of the room to protect it.
Begin in one corner of the room where the laminate vinyl plank runs parallel to the wall and select a plank from each end of the plank to complete the installation.
In the gap between the first plank and the wall, insert a pry bar to help you out.
Afterward, gently pry it up to unlatch it from the surrounding planks with your fingers.
Start at the top of the first row and work your way down, board by board. Continually move forward to the next phase, and so on.
2. Glued Laminate Tiles are a second option.
The most difficult to remove off a floor is laminate tiles that have been adhered to the surface using adhesive.
To begin, apply a warm water solution to the tiles and allow them to dry.
The combination of heat and water loosens the glue, which is water-soluble until it becomes petrified.
Using a pry bar and a hand scraper, carefully pry up and scrape loose a floor tile, layer by layer.
A scraper attachment on an oscillating multitool can also be used as an alternative.
To remove the piece, heat the adhesive beneath the vinyl flooring using a heat gun until it begins to peel away.
3. Glued Laminate Strips (optional).
Vinyl floor tiles and laminate strips are similar in appearance.
The process of soaking them in water helps to weaken the glue that is beneath them.
When comparing laminate strips to vinyl plank flooring, the most significant distinction is that laminate strips are more malleable.
In these instances, the heat gun not only softens the laminate strips but also heats the glue, which is achieved by using a heat gun.
When you push the edge of the pry bar or scraper beneath the layers.
Using it makes it simpler to peel them away from the glue.
Using a multitool or pulling the laminate floor with one hand while pushing and scraping with a pry bar or scraper with the other is another efficient method of removing the laminate floor.
Our Final Thoughts
Floating laminate flooring is as simple to take apart as it is to put up.
It is possible that you will need to remove your laminate flooring in order to replace it with a different type of flooring or to replace any broken boards.
When removing the flooring, keep in mind that the edges of the boards are delicate and should be handled with care so that they can be reused in another space.
Frequently Ask Questions
Is it difficult to remove laminate flooring?
The removal of laminate flooring is a simple procedure that requires no expertise.
More recent laminate flooring is not attached to the subfloor and, if removed with care, can be reinstalled on the same surface.
In certain cases, the surface is referred to as a “floating floor” since it is suspended from the subfloor by a foam cushion.
What is the best way to remove a glued laminate floor?
Placing the point of a putty knife into a crack, seam, or loose corner can allow you to pry the laminate upward.
Squeeze a tiny bit of fingernail polish remover into the crack once it has been sufficiently lifted.
Allow for 30 seconds for the polish remover to loosen the adhesive before beginning to pull up on the laminate with your fingers.
What is the best way to remove laminate flooring without damaging it?
Clean, rubber-faced grouting floats should be placed directly on top of the corner plank and pushed down on, then the board should be pushed lengthwise toward the wall.
Push it sideways to release it from the plank next to it once it has been disengaged from the plank to which it is attached. When it is free of both boards, lift it out of the way.