Can You Install Tile Over Existing Linoleum?

Updated February 21, 2017

Many homeowners consider their linoleum flooring to be dated. Linoleum flooring can also become worn out over time. Tearing up this flooring can be dangerous because the adhesive beneath it can contain asbestos. Learning how to tile directly over existing linoleum will allow you to get the look of beautiful ceramic tiles without the headache of tearing up the linoleum. The process of tiling over existing linoleum flooring should only take you a few days.

Vacuum the existing linoleum floor so it is free of dirt or other debris. Large tears in the linoleum should be repaired or cut away before installing the tile.

Screw 1-inch screws into the linoleum approximately six inches apart into the linoleum with a screwdriver. This will keep the linoleum from moving or shifting over time.

Decide on a layout for the floor tile. Most homeowners lay the tile out on the floor in a dry run. This will give you the opportunity to move the tiles around until you are happy with the layout. You can also just pick a wall to begin laying the tile along, or find the centre point of the room and start laying out the tiles at the centre.

Spread tile adhesive on the linoleum floor with a notched trowel. Only spread a small amount of adhesive at a time to prevent it from drying too quickly. In most cases, it works well to spread enough adhesive for two or three tiles at a time.

Press the tiles into the tile adhesive. Place rubber tile spacers between the tiles to ensure an even grout line. Make necessary cuts to the tiles with a wet tile saw. Allow the tile adhesive to dry for 24 hours.

Remove the tiles spacers from the tile joints. Apply the grout to the tile joints with a rubber tile float. Scoop the grout up with the float. Spread the grout over the tiles joints, holding the float at a 45 degree angle while moving it across the tiles. Squish the grout into the joints so that the joints are full. Remove the extra grout from the tiles with a damp grout sponge. Let the grout dry overnight before use.

Things You'll Need

  • Vacuum
  • 1-inch screws
  • Screwdriver
  • Floor tile
  • Tile adhesive
  • Notched trowel
  • Rubber tile spacers
  • Wet tile saw
  • Grout
  • Rubber grout float
  • Grout sponge
  • Water
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Cadence Johansen is a freelance writer who enjoys writing about travel, marriage, family relationships, caregiver support, home improvement and money. Johansen has been writing professionally since 2008. She holds a master's degree in family studies from Utah State University.