How to Remove Contact Cement From a Wood Floor

Updated February 21, 2017

Contact cement, or rubber cement, is a semi-liquid adhesive compound used for bonds with high-sheer resistance, such as laminates. It is commonly used to install vinyl and laminate flooring on a foundation. Removing contact cement from a wooden subfloor can be accomplished with a contact cement solvent or chemical adhesive remover. Used in conjunction with the proper tools, these products can help restore your wood floor to its original condition.

Open the windows in the room and place an electric fan nearby to help with circulation. A well-ventilated room is necessary when working with any strong chemicals.

Pour hot water over the affected area of the wood floor, using a small pot or bowl. This will soften the contact cement in preparation for the adhesive solvent.

Apply an even coat of the contact cement solvent or adhesive remover according to the manufacturer's instructions. This may require a rag, paintbrush, paint roller or aerosol spray can, depending on the application.

Wait the instructed period of time for the adhesive to dissolve. Loosen it with a long-handled scraper or putty knife until the contact cement is lifted from the wood floor. Avoid using steel wool or other abrasive materials to thin the adhesive, as they have the potential to mar the wood underneath.

Mop up the loose contact cement and chemicals with water. Follow up with a wood cleaner to polish the floor if the adhesive has dulled it.

Things You'll Need

  • Electric fan
  • Hot water
  • Small pot or bowl
  • Contact cement solvent or adhesive remover
  • Scraper or putty knife
  • Mop
  • Wood cleaner
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