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Old 09-09-2010, 11:48 AM   #1
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


I was told by Lowe's Flooring Dept. that because I have linoleum installed before 1978 I have to have a "special" team of people remove it because the glue contains asbestos (somewhat like a Hazmat team wearing suits). Do you have the facts on this?
I am installing tile in my kitchen and would prefer to just tile over this lino. I was told there is a special kind of thinset to do it this way----is that true?

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Old 09-09-2010, 02:12 PM   #2
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


You forgot to include some relevant info about your floor and how it's built.

Like is it a slab or a suspended wooden subfloor. Very important.

Let us know about the old floor and your plans for the new floor, and I'm sure we'll be able to help.

Jaz

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Old 09-09-2010, 02:38 PM   #3
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


Hate to ask ya

But just how much prior to 1978 AND - did this fella (now I'm not daring to say he's wrong) ask for a sample of this adhesive or did he just use some mystical powers or claravoyance to arrive at the asbestos conclusion. Reason I ask - I had to remove a similar floor - probably one of the first of its type, and it was actually adhered with a shellac. Just a thought. Last time I looked shellac didn't have asbestos in it - asbestas i know
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Old 09-09-2010, 03:27 PM   #4
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


Regarding my previous post about removing lino that is glued down with pre 1978 glue that contained asbestos, it is on a concrete slab. I still would like to just tile over it by using a special thinset (if I was given the correct info that there is a special thinset for use installing tile over existing lino). The lino is down solid and isn't coming up anywhere.
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Old 09-09-2010, 07:05 PM   #5
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


I doubt there is asbestos in the adhesive used for sheet vinyl flooring. The asbestos would be the backing of the sheet vinyl, that off-white brittle stuff. It's not automatic, but most backings back then contained asbestos.

I can understand your reluctance to remove everything down to bare concrete. That of course would be the way to go and there's safe ways to remove the flooring even if it does contain asbestos. Do you know it contains asbestos or just assuming?

The "special team" approach is overkill, but retailers can't afford to get a letter from a lawyer 10 years from now claiming the asbestos they removed is the cause of their client's illness. So, people pay thousands of $$ to remove something worth a couple hundred. Many companies doing abatement love the fear factor.

How do you know the old sheet vinyl is down solid? Have you checked everywhere especially around the perimeter? Can you trust it to stay stuck if it is well bonded. Will redoing the work and starting over if some areas come loose ruin your day?

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Old 09-10-2010, 08:06 AM   #6
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


An option - If the slab is drillable, why not go over the linoleum with Hardi Board. 1\4 inch would probably be more than sufficient. And use thinset of course to anchor it. Yeah it's a fair amount of drilling, but you could go with masonry screws - probably 1 to 1 1\4 inch. There are also self drilling masonry screws if your cement will allow. Just have a Very good bit if you end up having to drill pilots. Might be the fastest way to go and hardi board is easy to handle.
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Old 09-10-2010, 08:37 AM   #7
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


The best way to apply tiles over a slab is directly with thinset. I would not attempt to adhere ceramic to the linoleum and using hardiboard, while doable, makes the job more complicated than it needs to be. Since no one on this board or at Lowe's can tell you definitively if the adhesive or linoleum has asbestos, why not find out for sure. I would never recommend that you handle materials that might conatin asbestos so the safest way is to have a qualified professional cut out a 1 inch by 1 inch square complete with adhesive and then test it. I have worked with asbestos for over thirty years, not daily but often, before the health risk became known and I have less fear of the substance than perhaps I should. It is hazardous when it becomes a dust that is inhaled. I would probably cut the square myself and send it to a lab for verification. But, that's just me. My official recomendation is to hire someone qualified and licensed to do it in order to reduce both anxiety and risk.
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Old 09-10-2010, 11:44 AM   #8
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


It is better to get to the slab....you would need a really good hammer drill to do the screw down because the concrete is pre 1978 it will be very hard. Is the old vinyl secure? or is it loose? you can buy a hazmat mask for 40 dollars at home depot i think. even if there is asbestos, the risk is minimal. army surplus stores also sell good masks.
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Old 09-10-2010, 11:56 AM   #9
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


Here is an alternative to consider. They make floating ceramic tiles with a plastic backing that locks into the next tile. I saw it at either Lowe's or Home Depot. Can't say how good it is but it can probably go over your linoleum. Then you would not have to be concerned about asbestos.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:12 PM   #10
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


I take back my comment that putting down hardiboard is doable. First reason is the difficulty of drilling into the concrete as stated by Aaroncarpet but I remembered that there has to be a layer of thinset underneath the hardiboard to help bond it to the floor. I don't think the thinset-linoleum bond will be partulary strong.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:31 PM   #11
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


I think you are talking about "Duraceramic". I have a friend who installs a lot of it and thinks it is great.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:36 PM   #12
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


You stated in your second post that the lineoleum was down tight. I am trying to figure out just how anyone knows how hard it would be to drill into the slab so you could screw and use thinset and hardiboard. Age is not the sole determining factor of hardness of concrete. Obviously you will want to take precautions regarding any unknowns such as dust from asbestos backing just as you would with hardiboards silicone fiber.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:41 PM   #13
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


Composition flooring materials from various eras have differing likelihoods of containing asbestos, and itís common to find materials from of quite different ages in the same property, sometimes installed one atop another:




As asbestos containing floor tiles are NOT banned in the US even today, you should never assume on the basis of age or tile size or style alone that composition tile flooring is asbestos containing or asbestos free unless you are confident that you can identify the manufacturer and type of floor covering with absolute certainty based on these criteria.

So unless you can definitely identify a floor covering as a type known to be asbestos containing free based on its appearance, the only way to verify the level of asbestos (if any) is via laboratory testing.

Here's an outline of a procedure for removing asbestos floor tile from the MN Dept of Public Health, this is the best such document I'm aware of:

Asbestos Floor Tile Removal

Itís difficult to print as a web page, so I've mirrored it in printable .pdf format here:

Asbestos Floor Tile Removal (Adobe .PDF format) - Mirror at Paragon Home Inspections Chicago

Keep in mind that you will have to meet all state and local requirements for asbestos removal and disposal.
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Old 09-10-2010, 12:58 PM   #14
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


Quote:
Originally Posted by rusty baker View Post
I think you are talking about "Duraceramic". I have a friend who installs a lot of it and thinks it is great.
No, two brands of floating ceramic are Snapstone and Quicktile. They are real ceramic and Duraceramic is (I think) not ceramic and requires a mastic. There may be other brands as well. I don't have any interest in any of the companies that make or distribute these products. They just sound interesting.

Regarding the drilling of holes in the cement to attach hardiboard: even if it were easy to do, it would not give as good a job as laying tiles directly to the cement floor and I stand by my comment that the thinset-linoleum bond would probably not be that strong though I have to admit that I have never tried to apply thinset to the top of linoleum. Some things just sound wrong and it isn't worth the risk of making my home a test lab . I leave that to Mythbusters.

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Old 09-11-2010, 02:41 PM   #15
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Removing Linoleum Installed Pre 1978


I could be wrong about the hardness of the concrete. I have installed carpet in basements, stretch in, for years, when the concrete is hard I may have to drill 200 holes to fasten the tackstrip. A standard drill motor is not suitable for this kind of stuff. besides, predrilling and screwing, only a percentage of the screws [the blue masonary screws] will bite. we don't have that problem with tackstrip, we use alumanim AT pins that compress into holes. that linoleum can probably be scored and scraped off with a 6" stand up scraper in 2 hours...or you can rent a tile stripper.....I've seen people lay over linoleum...it wont be warrantied by the manufacturer, but what they did was scuff the durface of the linoleum with a pole sander and some 40 paper.....if there is moisture in the concrete the lino might peel right up..

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Last edited by Aaroncarpet; 09-11-2010 at 02:46 PM.
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