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Can I Put Laminate On Top of Linoleum?

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Alright, next up on The Money Pit we have Lynn from Pennsylvania who’s looking to add a new floor to his home.

    Lynn, how can we help?

    LYNN: Well, I have a – maybe it’s a real simple question; I’m not sure. I’ve been checking around and I want to put down a floating floor in my kitchen. Right now there’s linoleum and the linoleum is in pretty good shape; there’s no holes or anything really major wrong with it. But everybody I talk to says that it has to come out and I’m not sure why I have to take it out.

    LESLIE: Are they unhappy with the way it looks or is there something going on that we should know about?

    LYNN: No, no. I mean it’s showing its age but there’s no holes or tears or anything like that. And I’m just – my question is why can’t you just put the floating floor right on top of the linoleum? Why do I have to take the linoleum out?

    TOM: Now, what kind of a floor are you going to put in? You say a floating floor? Are you putting in ceramic tile, you putting in laminate?

    LYNN: No, no, a laminate.

    TOM: Oh. There is no reason whatsoever to take out that linoleum. The only reason you might want to take out a floor if you’re putting down laminate is if the thickness is going to be an issue. But if it’s only, you know, the thickness of a linoleum floor, there’s no reason you can’t go right on top of that. The laminate floors are floating floors. They are not attached to the subfloor. They basically just sit there by their own weight. You install them with a small gap between the edge of the floor and your wall and then you cover that with shoe molding. So I can’t think of any reason to tell you to take out that linoleum floor.

    LESLIE: The only concern I might have is, especially when you’re by appliances like a dishwasher or a stove, make sure you pull it out before you put the new flooring back on so that when you, say, with the dishwasher when you’re putting in the new flooring you don’t trap it in there so it doesn’t get stuck. So that might be the only concern and maybe that’s what your friends are trying to warn you about.

    LYNN: I don’t know but, like I said, I’ve talked to several people and they all said the same thing and I really didn’t understand why, so …

    LESLIE: No. And the kitchen is a great place for a floor like this. You can look for pieces, especially in a linoleum or in a laminate, some sort of – in a laminate like a wood flooring or an engineered hardwood. You could put something in that has – that also come with the foam backing on the back of each piece. So you don’t actually have to lay out a sheet of the foam subfloor; you can even just have it attached to the back of those planks as you put them in, so it saves a step.

    LYNN: Well, great. Well, I think that that helped. That’s going to save some time, anyhow, and I appreciate all your help.

    TOM: You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974.

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