LESLIE: Kate in North Carolina is calling in with a creative flooring project. What can we do for you?
KATE: My floor is either linoleum or vinyl. It’s in the kitchen and it’s at least 10 years old. And what I’d like to do, as an interim project, is to paint it.
KATE: I’m wondering what you thought about that.
TOM: Yeah, I don’t think you can paint it. It’s not going to stick. We’d rather you consider using a remnant piece of vinyl or perhaps a laminate floor. These are not expensive options and it’s going to give you far more durability than any type of a surface prep like paint.
KATE: OK. So paint is not an option at all then?
TOM: I don’t think it’s a good idea, you know? I’m not sure it would even stick.
LESLIE: Well, people – I mean there’s a process. Certainly, if you were to go online, you’d find information about how to do it. What generally is done – and really, my only concern is that it’s such a floor that you use a lot, you clean a lot, so the durability of the paint would have to be a factor.
Now, if you were going to give it a try since maybe in a year you’re going to replace it anyway and why not, what you would want to do is sand the floor, which is crazy. You’d be sanding the floor with like 180-grit sandpaper and you want to just remove that glossy finish and get rid of that slickness to it.
LESLIE: And then once you’ve sanded, you’re going to use a liquid sander; something maybe like Gloss-Off, just to try to get that additional surface finish off of that flooring. Once that’s done, you’re going to prime the surface with a really good painting primer and you want to use a good, thick coat with a roller and then allow that to dry. And then you can go ahead and paint it.
Now, you might want to use a porch-and-floor paint or something that’s really made to withstand the traffic. And you can get creative: you can use a stencil, you can use an interesting finish, you can create it to look like anything. But it’s worth a shot if you plan on replacing it in a year or two; just see how it stands up. But my concern is just scrubbability, durability. You use the kitchen floor a lot.
KATE: Alrighty. Well, thank you so much.
TOM: You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT. There’s lots and lots of things that can be painted. Vinyl floors are not one of them.
LESLIE: It just makes me nervous.