Help! Removing glued down laminate from wood floor?!


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Old 08-04-15, 04:11 AM
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Help! Removing glued down laminate from wood floor?!

We want to remove worn out 'click together' laminate wood flooring from our living room hoping to sand the real floorboards underneath but the seller has glued it together and straight on to the floorboards, no underlay just straight on! Has anyone ever come across this before? I've found Youtube clips showing people removing it with some sort of hydrolic chisel but that is where the floor underneath is concrete and you don't care about damaging it... is there any way to save my floor?

We have really really stretched ourselves to buy our flat and have no budget for decorating - this was the last thing we needed!
 
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Old 08-04-15, 04:32 AM
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Welcome to the forums! Gluing laminate directly to a substrate can only cause problems. I can see this especially in GB due to your humidity levels. Laminate must expand and contract, and gluing it solidly prevents that. Now, to your problem. It is going to be difficult and time consuming, but the floor may pop up using a slammer type tool at a low angle so as not to damage your flooring. You want to get just under the laminate. The problem with laminate is that it is only MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) and can come apart rather easily, leaving you with an even bigger mess. I don't know of a way to do it without potentially damaging what is underneath.

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Old 08-04-15, 04:45 AM
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Thanks Chandler, that tool does look like it might work if the blade part is tough enough. It is actually click-together hardwood flooring (20mm) and would've been very expensive at the time it was put in. Would you recommend trying to cut it into smaller bits with maybe a circular saw before trying to prise it off?
 
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Old 08-04-15, 05:07 AM
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No, you will possibly scar the flooring beneath. In addition once the blade (tough carbon steel) gets under the flooring, having it in full pieces may help pop the remainder up. I am hoping they used an inferior glue to hold it down. You can always post pictures to let us see what you are seeing. It helps sometimes. http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...your-post.html
 
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Old 08-04-15, 05:22 AM
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Great idea - thanks Chandler, I'll take a picture tonight.
 
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Old 08-04-15, 05:51 AM
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My concern is not getting the laminate out, it is what is salvageable to the floor underneath. My gut tells me that the floor underneath was in less than perfect shape or the decision to go over it with another floor would not have been made. You also will have to deal with a ton of residual glue left on he floor after you pull the top layer. That glue will give you fits and fight tooth and nail to stay put and resist removal. Plans most likely should include replacing the over floor, not just removing to refinish. Just my opinion having done enough flooring to be able to play devils advocate.
 
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Old 08-04-15, 07:55 AM
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Hi Louise and another welcome to the forum. Having struggled removing some old vinyl flooring that was glued down to stay I have a couple of suggestions. Basically, here is where I would start.

I would use a hair dryer and warm up a putty knife to see if heat would allow me to push it under the floor, at a point where it is glued. I was able to lift some of my vinyl this way, all-be-it extremely slow. Where my vinyl would fold out of the way, your flooring will lift a little at best.

Now, to get innovative and some of the wood floor pros here can correct or suggest at will. When I remove many glues, I contaminate the surfaces with an oil to prevent them from reattaching. My thinking is that a good wood oil might serve this purpose and pose no harm to the wood floor below, speculation.

But, if you can get the putty knife to push under and perhaps coat it with some wood oil, you might make some gradual progress at removing that laminate. Some wood wedges could help as you progress. More innovation would be needed as the floor lifts but I'll leave that to you. The key is getting a way to separate the two and heat might help.

Bud
 
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Old 08-04-15, 08:42 AM
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Wink

Thanks for all your helpful suggestions, the hairdryer and knife in particular is something I can do immediately without a trip to the tool-hire store so will definitely be my first stop!

@czizzi, this was my dad's first instinct as well. I totally see your point of view and accept you are probably right but I am a born optimist! I know nothing about the previous owners but their decision to rip out all the other orginal features (the house is around 100 years old) makes me think they weren't too worried about retaining them and just wanted the whole house to match. Certainly the bits of board I can see are in very good condition and the downstairs flat (it is part of a house divided in two) has already done it and it looks great. Yes it will be very frustrating to spend hours painstakingly removing boards only to find they are unsalvageable but I feel the flat deserves it!
 
 

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