HELP! Removing "Tar" like glue under linoleum

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Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:33 pm
We are working on finishing the floors on our just purchased 1914 bungalow. We pulled up the carpet to find 12x12 tile. We pulled up the tile, and with it the linoleum, only to find a black sticky glue that was used to put down the linoleum. Anyone found anything that removes this stuff? <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:35 pm
Never underestimate the power of Formula 409. Soak the material with it and then scrape it up. <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:35 pm
Doesn't all of this liquid, whether it be 409 or boiling water, soak into the wood??? It doesn't damage the wood? Under my dried adhesive is unfinished wood...would liquid ruin the wood if it had no top coat on it? <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:35 pm
If you are really under time constraints, call in the pros. This is what we did after mineral spirits and water didn't work, and we were set to move in one week. It amazed us how quickly and completely the floor refinisher was able to make that stuff disappear and make the floor look beautiful. Depending on how big your room is, it doesn't have to cost the earth. Get a recommendation for a good, local, Mom and Pop type place, and be prepared to enjoy the feeling of money and time well spent. If you've got the time, expertise, and muscle, doing stuff yourself is great, but there's also a lot to be said for a little cash making things happen silently, painlessly, and effortlessly. <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:36 pm
While we are still ripping up the old stuff, I will be getting estimates to finish the old floor. A new floor cost $10 per sq ft...does anyone have a rough idea as to what finishing the old would cost if new is $10? <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:36 pm
I can not beleive something as simple as a pot of boiling water would work, but it did! We've got our work cut out for us! Thankfully there are only two rooms and a small hall that have the gunk on it. <br>Once again- thanks to all who offered helpful advice! American Bungalow saves the day! Jody <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:36 pm
I've encountered the same problem in a room. One correction, it isn't 'tar-like', it is tar, tar paper, that is. I've tried mastic remover as well as paint stripper, and all I got was a sticky mess and every tool I used is coated in the stuff. <br> <br>We tried a heat gun and a flexible metal putty knife with a good degree of success. Don't use plastic because it can't take the heat. Also, beware of the heat because if you aren't careful it can leave black spots on the wood. <br>As far as moving in next weekend goes, I think you'll be hard-pressed to have completed this project in time, because you will probably have to refinish the floors. <br> <br>One comment on the possibility of asbsestos in the mastic: Even though asbestos is probably present, it shouldn't pose any health risk because it is Type 2 asbestos, which has a particle size too large to risk damage to the lungs. I would recommend a mask similar to something you use when stripping, though, because you will be generating some fumes from the heat applied. A little ventilation will go a long way and the smell shouldn't linger. <br>Good luck, and let me know how successful you were!!! <br> <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:37 pm
I heard on HGTV this weekend that boiling water often works on these old glues. Might be worth a try.

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:37 pm
Hot water does work. A few months ago we removed 5 layers of flooring from our kitchen and the bottom layer was linoleum which had been glued to the wood floor. We started with a paint stripper (marginal results) but ended up doing most of the floor by soaking small sections with boiling hot water. Worked great. It was physically hard work but worth it in the end. <br> <br>It's quite possible that the linoleum backing contains asbestos, but as long as you keep the material damp you won't need to worry about airborn particles, but I'm not an expert on asbestos so use your best judgement. <br> <br> <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:37 pm
WOW! Thank you to everyone who posted a reply! I am so pleased with the speedy responses we've gotten! I'll let you all know how the hot water method works. <br>Thanks again! Jody

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:38 pm
I spent this past weekend doing the exact <br>same thing. We're only peeling it down to the <br>sub floor, there wasn'y any hardwood under <br>the linoleum. We're putting new hardwood <br>floors there and we needed to make an even <br>surface. <br> <br>Mineral spirits break it down, and you should <br>be able to use a scraper to get it up. It take <br>some time and you'll probably end up with a <br>weeks worth of GI Joe kung fu grip, but I might <br>have not been doing it right...rambling on <br>now...mineral spirits. <br> <br>Also check older bulletin entrees, because I <br>know the question has come up before. <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:38 pm
Thanks for the info Brian. We have tried everything. You can't even scrap it up. It's horrid. Read a posting a while back that suggested hot/tepid/warm water would do the trick. (?) Unfortunatley we are cramped for time- moving in this weekend! <br> <br>

Posts: 5450
Joined: Wed Jul 03, 2002 2:01 pm
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 2:38 pm
Be careful. This mastic, like the tile you removed, often includes asbestos.

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