If you want to learn how to remove linoleum because you have decided to remodel your home, it is quite easy to do if you know the right steps which are shown below. However if you are bluntly going at it without any preparation, it could prove to be quite a difficult task.
The most important factors to consider are the age of the linoleum, the type of glue that was used and your level of patience. Don’t get alarmed if you won’t be able to completely remove it from the get go. Particularly if the material is quite old, you might not be able to easily lift the glue. In some cases it might be actually better to leave it and install the new flooring on top. However this is rather the exception than the rule.
You might have to do the entire removal process in several passes to get rid of all traces of linoleum and glue from your subflooring. And speaking of subflooring, concrete can easily take more abuse than hardwood, so when you are working with a scraper, you might have to use it lightly. Use a scraper that has a very sharp razor blade so it penetrates the glue easily. You can also use a utility knife, however people found that they get better results with the scraper.
How to remove linoleum
The first thing you need to do is cut the linoleum in smaller pieces, as they will be easier to remove than attempting it on a larger surface. Once you have the cut pieces start pealing them back. Go slow and with enough pressure to move the material from the subfloor. This way you will also remove the glue easier.
The more difficult part comes after removing the top layer, as now you need to remove those difficult pieces that are still stubbornly stuck to the concrete or wood. This is where the scraper comes into play. First add some solvent that is used for this, however make sure that it can be easily applied on the wood and it will not destroy it. You can find solvents at the local DIY store. Alternatively you can try using hot water by pouring it straight onto the adhesive backing. Leave it to soak for a while and then try scraping again. If you have a wooden subfloor, go easy on the scraping.
Something that I haven’t personally tried but I’ve heard good things about is using a hair dryer to heat the glue so it comes off easier. Once the adhesive is soft enough it should come off the subfloor quite fast.