Linoleum Woes

I am peeling up linoleum in my house that was stuck to the concrete foundation. Its coming up pretty easy for the most part, except for a lot of the spots its actually splitting into two layers, the top part that you walk on is coming off and the bottom part that is glued… remains glued. This stuff is stuck on there hard. What is a good way of taking this crap off and prepping the floor for ceramic tile?

Two conflicting strategies depending upon the type of glue.

Dry ice and a hammer - leave the ice on for about two minutes and the glue should become very brittle. Hit it with a hammer and then sweep it up with wet paper towles. Avoid the temptation to use your vacuum cleaner, as the heat of the engine can cause it to become gummy again inside the machine.

A hot air gun. Find them in the craft store, usually near the stamping supplies. It’s like a hair dryer only it would shrivel your hair down to nothing. It will melt the glue, which can then be mopped up with wet paper towels.

A third option,*** if the ventilation int he room is good enough,*** is finding the right solvent for it. Since you’re on concrete, it’s not likely to hurt anything. T’were it me, I’d start with straight acetone. A smart person would probably go ask at the hardware store if they have a recommendation.

Any way you slice it, you’re going to need a lot of paper towels.

Thanks for the advice, TruCelt. It seems to be two layers of vinyl though.

Try a scraper. We use ice scrapers, more leverage, less bending, very heavy duty.

They also have floor scrapers, but not sure how well they work.

Have you thought about covering the concrete with 1.5 or 2 inch thick extruded polystyrene foam board and plywood with tapcons? You’ll get a thermal break from the concrete and any linoleum that doesn’t come up won’t matter. Use a good tile underlayment like Ditra.

Good advice! I also recommend DITRA for any floor tile installation.
OP, whether to insulate the floor depends on whether the slab is in the basement or on grade.

Thanks for the links, now I know what to look for!

I don’t think I could effectively get two inches in this type of situation. I am going through a kitchen, into a bathroom, and a walkway between carpeted areas that already exist. I don’t know really about insulating from the concrete, its just a slab on the ground. It usually doesn’t get very cold in my part of Texas except for This week…

I am going to post some pictures up this evening when I get home to show you guys what I am taking about. My neighbor told me to pour boiling water on it, but I don’t really know what to think about that.

Moisture and temperature swings shouldn’t be a problem for you. You can lay your tile on the slab.
You should be able to cover the area with DITRA and get right to tiling without having to remove all the old linoleum.

Good Luck!

Well I am working off of a lip around my carpet (I will post a pic of the seam this evening so you can see what I am taking about.) You don’t think that it will build up to be way above my carpet? The lip of the carpet is about 5/8 of an inch, if that. Does that make sense?

Yes, you want your transitions to be flush. A lot of times it’s a good idea to add sleepers on concrete; I have them in my basement, but I live in MN. I don’t think it would really help in your case.

You should be able to get the old linoleum off.

How old is the old linoleum? There may be asbestos in the glue.

The house was built in 2001 so I don’t think I have to worry about the asbestos… right? I thought that stuff ended in the 70s?

I wouldn’t worry about asbestos.

fisha-contractor, and non-worrier extraordinaire.

Good deal. I will post up pictures of what I am looking at when I get off of work here in a little bit. Besides, its my first house and I am very eager to show it off :slight_smile: