Floor Stripping – Floor Covering Removal

Floor covering removal is a task the home owner can perform if desired. Saving cash on labour may be the motivator. Pricing to carry out this work for our clients is an option we offer in our quotes. Below is a brief insight into floor stripping and what’s involved. Together with that, find a couple of tips for the D.I.Y. handyman.

Timber floor stripping services we offer include:

  • Complete Floor Covering Removal 
  • Disposal of Floor Coverings From Your Property
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Floor Stripping – Old Carpet Removal

Removing carpet

Floor stripping of old carpet is a straight-forward process. Be that as it may, there are some issues that may prove time consuming. For example, usually there are plenty of staples holding the underlay down. These will need to be all pulled out. Also, moisture may have caused rubber underlay to glue to the floor. Scraping this off can be quite difficult. Removing all the carpet grip edging, staples, tacks and residue is also all part and parcel of this task.

Hot tips if you choose to take on this floor covering removal:

  • Cut the carpet down into manageable pieces. (Divide an average room into thirds and roll the manageable pieces up to carry out)
  • Turn the hammer upside-down and pull the claw back over the underlay staples. (Most times this will pull them out with ease)

Floor Stripping – Vinyl and Underlay

Removed floor coverings

Kitchen and dining floors in older homes is where vinyl is most common. Removing the underlay is a tedious task due to the amount of staples used. In an average kitchen floor, expect to deal with a few hundred at least. Long u-shaped masonite underlay staples are unlike the carpet ones.

Hot tips if you choose to take on this floor covering removal:

  • Try to remove the Masonite sheets in one piece (Lever up the edge of the Masonite sheets. The staples will pull through and remain in the floor)
  • Use a special tool to remove the staples such as carpenters pinchers – (Use a grinder to blunt off the edges if you find they are snapping off the staples.

Hardwood floors tend to cause about 2 in 10 staples to snap off. This is due to their hardness. Softer pine floors are a breeze and such are rare for this to happen.

Removing Floor Coverings on Stairs

Timber floor and stairs

Timber stairs are usually covered in carpet. You will find carpet gripping strips on both the treads and risers. (the upright parts of the stairs) Removing them from the treads is straight forward – pry up and remove. Avoid damage when removing them from the risers. Tackling this the wrong way can damage the riser surface.

Hot tips if you choose to take on this floor covering removal:

  • Break the carpet grip strip away either side of the securing nails
  • Pull the securing nails out with pincher pliers

Some minor damage will occur when pulling them out. This is due to ribbed nails used to secure them. Filler will repair this at the sanding/polishing stage. Carry out this task the wrong way and it can be an eye-sore on completion.

Sanding off Residual Glue & Paint

Residual glue may be present after removing some floor coverings. Some glues may be still quite sticky. Sticky glue is bad news for the floor sander, but usually good news for you. To explain, the glue acts as a barrier from stains. Over the years it has stopped moisture and stains from entering the timber floor surface. This results in an ultra-clean floor, ready to seal and polish.

Painted floors in some cases may be an problem. Issues arise when it has seeped down too far between the floorboards. Coloured lines may be present between the floorboards after sanding. Removing it can be difficult. Thin paint on timber floors can sand off without a problem. Both paint and glue need to assessed for advice and exact pricing.