Can We Talk Floors?

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Nov 17, 2019
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House was built in the late 40s. When I bought in the late 90s, I was in a hurry to move in, so I did the minimums. Part of that was putting padding and carpet down over the old linoleum. Now it's time to pull the carpet (20+ years is enough) and do something else.

In the rest of the house I was able to take more time and sand the oak planks and finish them. I was hoping to do that in this room, but now, I'm not so sure. The linoleum came up fine for most of the room since it was just laid and stapled., but one end is glued down. Prying and scraping gets some of it, but not all. I'm going to try a belt sander and see how much progress that makes. It should get the surface material, but I'm not sure how deep the glue stains are.

First preference is sanding and finishing. I'm not putting carpet back down. I'm considering some type of roll material. Laminate is another choice but any I've ever seen is too slippery for socks. And it gets kind of expensive since you have to use padding under it.

Long intro I guess for the question .... is there something I can use to dissolve the old (decades old) glue? The main body of the floor is fairly smooth and in pretty good shape --- it's just that one end that's a problem. The floors in the other rooms turned out decent, but I didn't have the glue problem.


Floor1.jpgFloor2.jpg
 

Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
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Call the local rental yard and see what they have available. Someone has had this problem before, and solved it.
Before doing anything, I would have had the material tested for asbestos. Sure as hell I wouldn't go at it with any sort of power tool without knowing that.
 
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herm0016

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what @Greenman said.

also, try a heat gun or a steam iron.

for other options, we have been super impressed with metrofloor lvt and have used it a couple times. our 4 dogs 2 of which are over 100 lbs were never able to scratch it, and its not too slippery like a lot of them. one we used was patterned like travertine and looked great. planning on putting it in this place as well.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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It's just basic Armstrong vinyl, probably 70s or 80s. Most of it is coming up with a prybar or scraper, so there won't be much to sand off. It's more about whether glue penetrated the wood or stayed on the surface.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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I guess I'm going to have to cover it. Once I got the rest of the carpet and vinyl up, I found some other imperfections; stains, uneveness between boards, low spots and so on. Would take a deeper sanding than I can do with a belt sander. By time I rented a floor sander (or had someone do it) and bought the polyurethane to seal it, I'd have as much money into it as a basic covering.

It's only 9' x 13', so not a huge area.

Plus I have to paint the walls and ceiling, plus patch a few spots in the walls, so I have to watch costs.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Swept as much as I could, but there was still some fine dust the broom wasn't getting. Went at that with some warm water and Murphy's. I'll be hornschwaggled if the 'glue' didn't start to dissolve. I wanted to get as much of the floor mopped as I could, so I'll go back at that area again tomorrow after it all dries.

I doubt it'll all come up that easy, and it's still darker, sort of greyed. Not sure if a deck cleaner type product may bleach it out to a more natural tone. Even if it does, that won't address the other problems.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Whelp, it DID come up that easy. More damp mopping with warm water and Murphy's got most of the residue and loosened the rest of what was under the linoleum so it could be scraped off easily. A couple more rounds of mopping and use of one of those fabric scrubber pads and this is what I see:


Floor3.jpg

That dark band at the end won't be an issue after some sanding and wood cleaner once I get the baseboards and other trim back in place. There may be some furniture there anyways.

So, plan change again ... back to sanding and finishing with tinted polyurethane. But that will have to be the last step after the ceiling and walls are painted.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Rough sanding done (mostly). The biggest part of the heavy staining is gone, but a few spots remain that are too deep. Just adds to that rustic flavor I guess. Planning on changing sanding belts and making one more pass with wide sweeping arcs to even it out as much as possible. There will probably still be some uneveness, but maybe the staining will take care of that.

Floor4.jpg
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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English Walnut stain turned out a bit darker than I wanted, but it worked out OK by hiding a few of the dark spots I couldn't sand out.

Floor.jpg

That'll have to cure up until tomorrow before I can urethane. They say 4 hours, but I'll let it go longer.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Polyurethane went on early this morning. They want 24 hours for light traffic and 72 hours for furniture. Given that's it's cool ( 60s ) and damp, it'll probably take a bit longer. Might try to put the trim back on Tuesday or Wednesday, but will probably hold off until next weekend for the furniture.
 
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bbhaag

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Looks good man. Do you travel? I've got some that need redone to!:)
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Curing up OK. I was able to walk on it this morning without tracking. Gonna be a few days though before I can do much. Not really smooth and shiny/glossy, but that's why I didn't do laminate. I want to be able to walk on it in socks without slipping.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Ima gonna call it done.

FloorDone.jpg


Cured enough to move around on. Put baseboards and door trim back on, did some paint touch up. Still have to put the electrical raceway cover back on and some minor cleanup and touch up.

I just did a coarse sand and then the stain and poly. Can called for a resand and second application, but I'm not doing that. My back and knees won't let me. It has a decent surface with some grit which will greatly reduce the risk of slip and fall.
 

Lost_in_the_HTTP

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Nov 17, 2019
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I don't know if I said or not, but this was the bedroom. I moved everything to another room and made this an office.

At the time I did this I figured I'd keep going into the wrong room for at least a few days. I'm a creature of habit and tend to take a while to adapt to change ... like writing last year for a while (2021) instead of the new year (2022).

I never did. At all.


Until a couple of days ago and have done it at least twice.


Why?
 

Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
19,163
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Ima gonna call it done.

View attachment 52225


Cured enough to move around on. Put baseboards and door trim back on, did some paint touch up. Still have to put the electrical raceway cover back on and some minor cleanup and touch up.

I just did a coarse sand and then the stain and poly. Can called for a resand and second application, but I'm not doing that. My back and knees won't let me. It has a decent surface with some grit which will greatly reduce the risk of slip and fall.
I think you're going to regret not doing at least 2 coats of polyurethane. The film thickness is marginal with only one coat and the grit you feel could break through the surface with foot traffic.
 

NutBucket

Lifer
Aug 30, 2000
26,794
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I think we did 4-5 coats of clear varnish. That was nearly 30 years ago in my parents' house. God that dust!
 

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