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How to Remove Vinyl Flooring From Concrete

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Though it may seem daunting to tackle this project on your own but remove vinyl flooring from concrete is not actually that difficult, just time consuming. Before you start this project, It is important that you have the right tools before you begin.

How to Remove Vinyl Flooring From Concrete

How to Remove Vinyl Flooring From Concrete?

To remove vinyl flooring from concrete, you should start by making a slit in the vinyl tiles or sheets, then work your way out by prying the vinyl away from the concrete. To finish the project, you will need to remove the adhesive from the concrete flooring, so you are left with a clean slate!

We will walk you through steps you need to take before, during, and after removing your vinyl flooring from concrete, as well as important things to keep in mind, safety precautions, and shortcuts.

Be sure to read my extensive vinyl flooring buying guide and find all answers needed

Before You Start

Before you start to remove flooring from concrete, you should be sure that the vinyl is definitely unstable or too old to use, at all.

If the vinyl is in decent condition, there is a possibility that you can simply cover it up, rather than rip the whole thing up and replace it.

Regardless of the condition, you may want to rip it up for your home renovation, to leave your space clean and available for a fresh start. Though this is a time consuming project, the outcome will be better than you expected. 

Before beginning, you should also be prepared with the appropriate safety gear. Have a pair of safety goggles available and gloves if you anticipate using your hands to clear out the debris and materials.  

Tools Needed

Removing vinyl flooring from concrete cannot be done with your hands — you need some powerful tools to assist you.

Tools Needed  to remove Vinyl Flooring

There are many different tools that are possible to use on this project, here are a few that we really recommend: 

  • Utility Knife: The utility knife, like this on Amazon, is great at cutting many different materials. It has a lock system and interchangeable blades that will really come in handy for this job. 
  • Putty Knife: with Putty Knife you will scrape the tiles away from the adhesive and the concrete much easily. 
  • Heat Gun: A heat gun is a great tool for many renovation projects, but it is especially great for floor removal jobs. I love Seekone heat gun, you can find in most big retailer stores
  • Prybar: Prybar is used to pull off baseboards and trim. 
  • Glue Stripper: The stripper like Blue bear on Amazon made out of Soybeans removes vinyl glue from the floor at the final stage. This makes overall job much, much easier.

How to Remove Vinyl Tiles from concrete?

A great part about vinyl flooring is that it is easier to remove than other floorings. This being said, it is still not a simple task. Here are the steps you need to take to remove vinyl tiles from concrete: 

  1. The first thing you need to clean vinyl flooring – remove all furniture and debris from your work site. This will make it easier to lift the tiles so you won’t have to worry about it later. 
  2. Make a cut in a tile with your utility knife. 
  3. Insert your putty knife between the vinyl tile and the concrete. Pry under the tile and lift it as much as you can 
  4. If you are not able to lift the tiles easily, use your heat gun to loosen the adhesive then try again. 
  5. Repeat these steps until all of the tiles are removed! 

How to Remove Vinyl Rolls from concrete?

Here are the steps you need to take to remove your vinyl rolls or sheets from concrete. 

  1. The first thing you have to do is remove all furniture and carpets from your workplace. It helps if you use your prybar to remove the baseboards and trim of your flooring. Be cautious when you pull the trim away because you do not want to damage it — it is much easier to pull away trim as a whole rather than when it is broken.
  2. The second step is to cut out the center of the floor. Using your utility knife, cut strips through the vinyl about 6 inches apart. Do this from one wall to the opposite wall. 
  3. Then, like how you removed the vinyl tiles, use your heat gun to soften the adhesive and then use the putty knife to pry it away from the floor. Do this with each strip of cuts you make until all the strips are removed from the concrete. 

How to Remove Remaining Adhesive from Concrete

Once you remove the vinyl flooring from the concrete, there will definitely be some glue adhesives remaining . You will want to remove this not only for appearance, but for functionality. Follow this steps:

  1. Start by scraping off as much glue as will come off.
  2. Pour boiling water onto the concrete where adhesive is stubbornly sticking. This will loosen the glue, so when you scrape again it’ll come up.
  3. If this does not work, try getting a commercial glue remover like before mentioned Blue Bear from Amazon. After application, your glue should come right up.
  4. Finish the project by sweeping the debris away, and you have a clean concrete floor! 

Tips for Making your Vinyl Removal Easier

Here are some tips not included in the step-by-step that might make a huge difference in removing your vinyl flooring from concrete. 

Use Petroleum Jelly to help dissolve the glue on the floor

Spread a thin layer of petroleum jelly on the surface of the concrete after you remove the vinyl. This will help you dissolve the floor adhesive. 

Using the Stripper Machine

Pulling back the sheets of vinyl that you cut will be much easier if you have access to a stripper machine. Very carefully lift the vinyl at the groove which you made a cut, and then insert the metal stripper in between the vinyl and the concrete, and move the blade around the ground to quickly remove the flooring.