How to Remove Particleboard Flooring

  • 2-10 hours
  • Beginner
  • 125-250
What You'll Need
Circular saw
7 1/2-Inch blade, carbide-tipped
Work gloves
Protective glasses
Small pry bar
Protective mask
Utility knife
Stud finder
Flat shovel

Particleboard is an inexpensive solution to other kinds of flooring material and is most commonly found in trailer homes and older home constructions. It is easily installed, insulated and carpeted or covered with vinyl. Particleboard available for installation in a single piece or in larger sections. When it comes time for you to tackle a renovation project and want to replace the floor you will have to remove the old one first. Unlike other flooring materials, particleboard has to be removed in a different way. Particleboard is easy to remove but it does take more time to remove as well as unique tools to remove it.

Step 1 - Remove the Floor Covering

It's rare that particleboard floors won't be covered with carpet or vinyl. This layer has to be removed prior to removing the particleboard. Carefully cut the carpet on one side of the room. Grab the edge you cut and pull up on the carpet and toward the opposite side. You'll be ripping it away from the carpet tacks, nails or glue. Cut the carpet if it gets stuck. Remove the tack boards with the small pry bar. Vinyl sheets are removed slightly differently. Use the small pry bar to pull up the edges. You can pull on the vinyl to remove it and use the utility knife to cut away pieces left behind. Remove vinyl tiles by prying them off the particleboard floor and using the shovel to push the remaining tiles off the floor.

Step 2 - Removing Particleboard

Put on work gloves, protective glasses and face mask. If your particleboard flooring is installed in sections then look for loose panels. Use the pry bar and crowbar to lift them off the joists. While they are raised you can grip an edge and physically lift them off the joists. Open a window and use it to remove the scrap flooring so it does not create a large pile. For pieces that are still tightly fastened you can use the crowbar to loosen them from the joist and then pull them up. Try to work from the back of the room toward the front.

This will prevent you from stepping in open areas. Particleboard floors can be installed in one large sheet. For this type of layout you will need to use the stud finder to locate the joists. Place a marker hash mark on each area where a joist is found. Set the circular saw so its blade is slightly lower than the particleboard's thickness. Make a series of cuts in one section and use the crowbar to pry the particleboard from the joists. Continue in this fashion until the particleboard flooring is completely removed.

Step 3 - Finishing

When the particleboard is removed; inspect the floor joists. Look for fasteners, screws and nails. It is important that these are removed before a new floor can be placed. Use your collection of tools to remove these.