How To Remove A Vinyl Plank Floating Floor

When I first started my kitchen makeover adventure I honestly wasn’t completely sure what I was going to do about the vinyl plank floating floor.

Flooring is always the last thing I do in any room makeover because I want the floor I’m getting rid of to take all the project abuse…. like paint spatters etc.

Not that I’m a messy painter or anything. No, not me. šŸ˜‰


kitchen vinyl plank flooring before removal

This vinyl plank floating floor just didn’t go with my new red and aqua kitchen colours.

(Leo likes to photo bomb my pics sometimes)


kitchen vinyl plank flooring before removal

So after a lot of thought I decided to remove it and cross my fingers that the blue and white vinyl floor that we put down over 15 years ago was still in good shape underneath.

I honestly couldn’t remember.

But no guts, no glory… right?  So I went for it.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

I decided to start behind the fridge and stove.

It was easy to pull up the vinyl behind there to get started.


removing vinyl plank floating floor / Thrifty Rebel Vintage

I only had to use a unility knife in a couple of places, and since I was hoping to keep the floor below I was very careful to not cut into it.


removing metal door threshholds for vinyl plank floating floor

I removed all door threshholds with a chisel and hammer by lifting the chisel once it was under and popping out the nails.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

Then it was all systems go.

I placed my foot at the start where two tiles met.  Using my weight to help separate the tiles I just pulled as I went along.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

Then I used my foot again at the other end of that same tile.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

Woo hoo!  There’s the beginnings of my nice and bright blue and white floor.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

I have to say that besides the fact that the floor needs a good cleaning I was so happy when I saw it.

My memory is crazy! I could have sworn that little blue square in the middle of each tile was pink.

I’m so glad it wasn’t. Wait! Did I actually just say that? lol.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

So I just continued to make my way tearing and pulling.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

I had to take a few breaks because my back isn’t what it used to be. All that bending over.

But it still went pretty quick.


repairing vinyl tile floor by replacing a damaged tile

After I tore out a few rows in front of the kitchen door I saw this rather big booboo.

I had totally forgotten about this spot where the top of the vinyl had peeled off, and I don’t remember what caused it.

Needless to say that if I was going to keep this floor I had to do something about that.

repairing vinyl tile floor by replacing a damaged tile

I outlined it with the knife, to loosen it up a bit, and I cut across one of the corners.


repairing vinyl tile floor by replacing a damaged tile

I got the rest of the tile out using the chisel and hammer.


repairing vinyl tile floor by replacing a damaged tile

When doing this be careful not to damage any of the sides of the other tiles.

I used the sticky side of duct tape to remove any bits of tile left behind when I chiselled it out.

Now I needed a replacement tile.

I looked at the tiles that would be below the stove and fridge and I saw a tile that had a bit of a gap between it and the tile beside it, which made it easy to remove. I just slid a butter knife in and carefully lifted the tile up until I could grab it with my hands and slowly pull it up until it was completely removed.


repairing vinyl tile floor by replacing a damaged tile

And here it is in front of the kitchen door.

When I put the replacement tile down I was shocked to see the colour difference. The tile protected from the light under the stove was a much brighter white.

It’s not quite as noticeable when you’re standing up.


vinyl plank floating floor pile after removal

I can hardly believe that this small pile of vinyl covered my whole kitchen floor, but there it is.


removing vinyl plank floating floor

The vinyl plank floating floor was a lot easier to remove than I thought it would be. It took me about 3 hours, with a couple of breaks, to do the whole thing.

I’m so happy that I put my money on my old blue and white floor. It isn’t perfect, but I’m never striving for perfection. I’m just striving for better…. and for me it’s definitely so much better.

Sometimes risks do pay off, and this one did for me.

And it cost me nothing, and that’s really the best part for this practically no-budget room makeover.

I’ll be sharing the complete floor when I post my kitchen makeover reveal next week.

I’m so excited to share that! Finally! So stay tuned!

UPDATE: You can now see my completed Under $100 Aqua and Red Kitchen Makeover.

If you enjoyed this post I think you’ll enjoy these too.
How to Paint a Faux Rag Rug
How to Paint an Old Wood Floor

Thanks so much for reading, and until next time…

keep on keepin’ on!


I sometimes share my projects and posts at these fabulous parties.



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  1. OMG Tuula that is so perfect! Now your kitchen has come together! Iā€™m so happy for you, I bet you smile every time you go in there! LOL,
    I WOULD….

    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      Thanks so much Raeleen! It does make me smile. I really lucked out with the floor, that’s for sure. If my memory was better I wouldn’t have waited so long to do this. lol.

  2. Mary Boger says:

    That looks fantastic!! Much brighter…really opens it up. So smart on how you
    fixed the hip-hop tile. You go girl!!!

    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      Thanks so much Mary! The blue and white floor really does reflect the light nicely and makes the room so much brighter.

  3. Debra Hubbs says:

    Wow cheapest redo ever lol. It looks great. Brightens it up so much. I love the cheerfulness of your kitchen and the colors.

    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      That’s my favourite kind of redo Debra. lol. Cheap and cheerful. šŸ™‚

  4. Oh my gosh I love how the new/old floor looks with your updated kitchen! How serendipitous that you could pull back the floor and find the perfect replacement! I’m also impressed with your work — not sure I would have done that myself lol (my back is probably worse than yours:) ) xo Kathleen|Our Hopeful Home

    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      Thanks so much Kathleen! The floor was easier to remove than I thought, but it was a little tiring. I have to say I’m so pleased with the old floor. It’s so much better than I remember.

  5. That is pretty fortunate to have a whole floor in such good shape underneath your current one! My husband started pulling carpet off an upstairs room and under the padding and newspaper was a gorgeous 1950’s vinyl floor with the floral medallion and border. I wanted it so much for my kitchen but we found that the parts that were walked on the most were completely ruined and adhered to the other layers making it not usable. Ah, the woes of an old house! Mine is 1870 šŸ™‚

    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      As you can see from the one tile that I had re replace we have plywood under it. I always wondered what’s under the plywood. That will probably always be a mystery. I love the old vinyl floors patterns. Some are absolutely gorgeous! But it’s hard to find them in good shape.

  6. Wow, it sure looks great with how you’ve done the rest of your kitchen so far!! I love it! I’m so glad you decided to take the plunge and see what the tile underneath would look like!

    Can’t wait to see the final reveal!


    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      Thanks Tania! I feel very lucky to have that floor in pretty good shape, and the colours are so much better than I remembered.

  7. Absolutely amazing! It looks perfect with the new kitchen! As you were removing the old, I noticed that it was really nice colors…but not for this kitchen! You have the magic touch, girl! Dona

    1. Tuula McPhee says:

      Thanks Dona! The floor I removed has some greens mixed in and it went very nice with the previous green kitchen, but it definitely didn’t go with my new kitchen that’s for sure. It really sucked out a lot of the light. It’s so much brighter now.

  8. Your how-to here is literally the only place on the internet thus far that I have found any pictures or mention of this specific type of flooring. Do you have any information on it? We have it in a lighter color in our kitchen in our new house that we bought a few months ago (yay first time homebuyers!). I am trying to figure out the best way to remove it, but I have some tricky obstacles ahead of me that include doorway trim that goes all the way down to the floor. The trim is original to the house and seems to be very attached to its place on the walls šŸ™

    1. First of all congrats on being a first time home buyer. That’s awesome! It sounds like your floor might be a little trickier to remove than mine. If your floor is truly a floating floor the good thing about that is it’s not permanently attached so it’s a lot less work to remove than many other types of flooring. That doesn’t mean it’s not work, just not quite as difficult. Floating floors are often adhered, hopefully just with double sided tape like mine was, around the edges of a room. Because it was years ago when we put this floor in I don’t have any info on it. The only advice I can give you if you do choose to remove it is that slow and steady wins the race. Good luck! šŸ™‚