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Linoleum is durable, hygienic, pleasantly looking material with low-heat conductivity. It is water and moisture resistant, sound-proof and easy to cut and bend. It is produced with a variety of colors. Linoleum is applied for floor covering. Having a thick base, it’s considered warm. Linoleum is easily washed with water, but is afraid of acids, alkalies, soda and mineral oils.
The material is most commonly used in kitchens and entry rooms, though it can be used anywhere in the house. You can buy linoleum for installation in tile form or in a large roll. The tile form has become more popular because it is easier to install and can you can mix and match tiles to create your own look. Linoleum can be a great do-it-yourself project for anyone who is tired of looking at a dingy floor or for anyone who just wants a change.
So let’s start from preparation work
The first thing you will need to do is to remove any furniture and any appliances from the room you are going to floor. Once everything is removed you will need to rip up the old flooring. Find any nails or staples sticking up from the floor and remove them. Clean away as much dust and debris as possible. Also remove any thresholds along the floor. Once you have this done you should inspect the condition of your sub floor. If it is anything but smooth and perfect you should lay down plywood to form a smooth, even, and level sub floor. Make sure the joints are tight and staggered.
Laying Tile Linoleum
After the floor is ready to go, you must find the center of the room. Start by choosing one wall. Measure this wall and put a small mark at the exact center of the wall on the floor. Do the same with the opposite wall. After you have two marks, take a chalk line and make a line from one mark to the other. At this point your room should be cut in half. Next proceed with the same process again this time with the other two opposing walls.
When you are finished your room should be cut into four parts. Use a carpenter’s square to make sure the lines are at a ninety-degree angle. Once you have this part finished you can begin to lay down your floor tiles. Do not use the adhesive yet. Starting in the center, lay down your tiles working outwards towards the walls. When you get to the final row of tiles that fit against the wall you will want to stop. If everything lines up, you can go back to the center and begin to apply your adhesive. Be sure so to use a respirator and other protective gear when working with the glue. Open windows if you can to allow the fumes to dissipate. Once you have all of the tiles laid down you can then cut the last row of tiles to fit between the wall and the floor you have already laid down. Use a knife and a very stiff edge to be sure you are making a straight and accurate cut. The adhesive should be holding the tiles into place stiffly before you attempt to walk over them.
For odd shaped rooms you may have to improvise. It is best not to use detailed tile layouts for this type of room. You can still try to find the center of the room and work your way out as you go. Save the odd fitting turns and edges for last and double-check all measurements.
Laying Rolled Linoleum
If you are using rolled linoleum, you may find that you have a hard job in front of you. Linoleum in rolled form can be very awkward.
Rolled linoleum is laid in a prepared room and is left for 10 days for it to become completely straight. In order to get rid of any bubbles and uneven places “iron” your linoleum with hot sand sack or a hot iron through paper. Then put all pieces together: large – at the bottom and small – at the top and press them with a load
If it is not realistic to lay the floor down in one single sheet, you will have to do it in two, three, or even four pieces. If you do this, you will have to work extra hard to be sure the joints are sealed and are located in a low traffic area of the room. If you leave a seam along a well-traveled path through a room the seam will not hold together nearly as well.
The last stage
The material is rubproof, but it should be laid into a well prepared surface. Note that if even a small object gets under it, for instance a stone, it will surely be visible after some days and this will spoil an appearance of your floor. Further on, linoleum will rub in this place.
So to avoid any bubbles, use a roller for best results. Allow the floor adhesive to dry according to manufacturer’s recommendations. Once the floor is dry you can refasten any thresholds you may have removed and reinstall appliances. Furniture and other items can be brought back in the room as well.
Tips and Tricks
- When possible, use the same brand adhesive as the linoleum to ensure compatibility.
- Some linoleum will expand slightly width–wise and shrink slightly length–wise. Always follow your manufacturer’s recommendations for expansion spacing. Some manufacturers recommend leaving an expansion space while others do not.
- If your linoleum floor will have seams, follow all seam width recommendations. Some manufacturers recommend fitting the linoleum flush at seams while others may require a 1/64″ space between seams.
- Always wear gloves if using a full–spread adhesive.
- If using sheet linoleum, do not unroll the linoleum until you are ready to cut and install it.
- Never store your linoleum in direct sunlight.
- Blades with hooks work well for trimming linoleum after you lay it. These work with most utility knives and can be purchased at many home improvement stores.
- When trimming linoleum along walls, use a scrap piece of wood to create a crease in the linoleum along the wall. Cut along this crease.
- On outside corners, cut the linoleum vertically from top to bottom.
- On inside corners, cut “V” shapes in the linoleum until it will lay flat along both walls.
- Place heavy objects on the linoleum during trimming, rolling and gluing to ensure the linoleum does not shift before it is secured to the subfloor.