How to Revitalize an Old Linoleum Floor

Written by april dowling
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How to Revitalize an Old Linoleum Floor
Linoleum floors are designed to endure many years of wear. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Recognised for its resiliency, water resistance and low maintenance, linoleum is a prominent flooring material in households. Although durable, linoleum inevitably ages and develops a yellow tinge over time from wax build-up and exposure to alkaline-based cleaners. When the cost of replacing old linoleum is an issue, homeowners can simply revive the flooring. Cleaning old linoleum with certain supplies can remove existing discolouration and grime to brighten and restore the floor's aesthetic appeal.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Broom
  • 1-cup chlorine bleach
  • 2 mop pails
  • Rubber gloves
  • Mop
  • Stiff-bristle nylon brush
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • Clean towels

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  1. 1

    Sweep the linoleum to remove all accumulated grit and debris.

  2. 2

    Create a solution of 1-cup chlorine bleach and 10 cups cool water in a mop pail. Wear rubber gloves to protect your hands from the bleach. Thoroughly mix the bleach and water.

  3. 3

    Mop the bleach solution onto the linoleum surface. Let the bleach solution permeate the linoleum for 45 minutes.

  4. 4

    Scrub the linoleum with a stiff-bristle nylon brush to remove the yellow discolouration and sealant.

  5. 5

    Mop the linoleum with fresh cool water to wash away the loosened build-up.

  6. 6

    Create a neutralising solution of 1 cup white vinegar and 1 gallon of cool water in a second mop pail. Mix the vinegar and water well.

  7. 7

    Mop the linoleum with the vinegar solution to neutralise any remaining traces of the bleach solution.

  8. 8

    Rinse the linoleum with fresh cool water to wash away the vinegar solution.

  9. 9

    Wipe clean towels over the linoleum to remove all moisture.

Tips and warnings

  • Sprinkle all-purpose powdered cleaner onto stubborn discolouration. Follow the directions printed on the product's label.
  • Substitute white vinegar for the chlorine bleach.
  • Test all solutions on a tiny, unnoticeable area of the linoleum to prevent discolouring the floor.

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