Vinyl Floor Tiles: DIY Directions on How to Remove and Replace Them

Whether you are just tired of looking at them or they have been damaged by years of use, vinyl floor tiles can be quickly and easily removed and replaced by following these steps. There are various methods to remove vinyl tiles from an entire floor. One method is to simply not remove them, only clean them well and lay the new floor over them. If this is not acceptable then it is time to roll up your sleeves and get to work.

To remove only a couple vinyl floor tiles (or to remove an entire floor slowly) is to lay a cloth over the tile that you need to remove and iron the cloth. Run the iron slowly while applying pressure to the iron over the cloth for a few minutes. This is done to loosen the adhesive on the back of the tile. After you have ran the iron over the vinyl tile for a few minutes carefully begin peeling back the tile with a metal putty knife (or similar tool). The tile should come out fairly easily. Clean any remaining residue from under the tile and place the new tile into the spot following the manufacturer’s recommendations on the product packaging.

When removing an entire floor using an iron or even a heat gun can be a long, trying, and painful process. Fortunately as you are removing the entire floor damaging surrounding tiles is not an issue. One method is to use an iron or heat gun to remove a few tiles in the center of the floor and gently (you don’t want to seriously damage the subfloor) use a square point shovel or other similar tool to remove the other tiles. To loosen the tiles from the floor you can try laying an electric blanket on the floor for a few hours to loosen the adhesive. Also electric heaters blowing onto the floor for a few hours is also sometimes useful. While there are different methods to remove tiles from an entire floor, often elbow grease is the quickest and most time and cost effective way of removing them.

A related tip is to place the new tiles in a sunny window or other warm spot to soften the adhesive so that they will stick well when put into place. And don’t forget to have a few spare tiles on hand for the ones that don’t stick well or become damaged in the future.

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