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Old 03-02-2011, 01:44 PM   #1
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New porcelain tile to replace vinyl floor in kitchen


Hello all, new here and just made an intro in the intro forum.

I'm currently preparing to lay new porcelain tile in my kitchen in a couple of weeks. I have laid tile several times in the past (including porcelain) so I know what I'm up against.

What I'm not sure about is the old adhesive on the floor. The house is slab-on-grade construction. The vinyl (house built in 2002) was glued down directly to the concrete slab. I have already pulled out all the sheet vinyl except for a little piece under the dishwasher. I'm going to wait until I actually start to lay the tile to pull out the dishwasher and pull that last piece out.

So I pulled out all the vinyl, and there are small bits of the paper backing left here and there. No big deal. But what about the adhesive that's left? It seems to be a very thin layer, and seems pretty hard and very smooth. Do I need to worry about removing all of this? The area I'm dealing with is right at 200 s.f.

Another issue is a certain smell that became apparent after pulling out the vinyl. I'm not sure if it's offgassing from cutting and tearing the vinyl, or if it's the adhesive itself or what, but it smells like a vinyl shower curtain. All the vinyl is gone except for that one piece under the dishwasher, so surely that little piece wouldn't continue to cause an odor in the whole kitchen, would it? I pulled all the vinyl out last weekend, and today (Wednesday) the odor is still quite apparent.

Something else of concern is that part of the vinyl flooring along one exterior wall had released from the adhesive long ago, since before I bought the home in 2005. I never messed with it, and the area that was released from the adhesive slowly got larger over the years since 2005. I'm not sure if it's because I did not have a splash block under the downspout on that exterior wall or what. I have since placed a splash block there to get water away from the wall during a rain. I hope I don't have any issues with the tile or the thin-set mortar.

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Old 03-03-2011, 01:20 PM   #2
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New porcelain tile to replace vinyl floor in kitchen


Well, I actually got down on my knees and put my nose to the floor last night, and the smell is definitely the adhesive on the floor. I have an angle grinder and just purchased an angled flap disc, coarse grit, and will remove as much of the glue as possible this weekend. I tried a small spot already and it definitely gets the stuff off. Lots of dust, of course, but we will take plenty of precautions like drop cloths, dust masks, running a shop vac hose near the grinder during the whole operation, front and back house doors open with box fan running, etc.

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Old 03-03-2011, 01:24 PM   #3
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New porcelain tile to replace vinyl floor in kitchen


You can rent an electric floor scraper. I used one on a friends floor and it worked great. $20 for the day here.
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Old 03-03-2011, 01:27 PM   #4
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New porcelain tile to replace vinyl floor in kitchen


The glue layer is so thin I don't think a scraper will have anything to "bite" into and scrape off. I think this flap disc on the angle grinder will do the job.
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Old 03-03-2011, 01:32 PM   #5
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New porcelain tile to replace vinyl floor in kitchen


I agree. Didn't know how big of an area you had to do. Could also rent a floor buffer/sander.
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Old 03-03-2011, 01:42 PM   #6
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New porcelain tile to replace vinyl floor in kitchen


Total area is only 208 SF. It's a small eat-in kitchen, laundry area, and pantry with lots of tight corners and ins and outs, so the small grinder will probably work best. Thanks for the suggestions.

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