You love the look of your linoleum floor, and the affordability it offered in flooring. But you’ve noticed an area or two where it seems to be bubbling up.
When moist air becomes trapped under a linoleum floor, it can create a bubble in the floor’s surface. It doesn’t matter how long ago your linoleum floor was laid, bubbles can appear at any time; whether you have just installed your linoleum floor or it was years ago. But don’t panic, there are simple ways to fix bubbles in linoleum flooring.
Prepare the Floor
First, you will want to prepare the floor by sweeping and cleaning it thoroughly to remove dirt or grease. It’s important to prepare the affected space prior to starting repairs to avoid any complications while repairing your bubbled flooring.
How to Fix Small Bubbles
(1) To fix small bubbles in your linoleum flooring (those that are smaller than one inch), use a thick needle to prick the surface of the linoleum and press down to release the trapped air.
(2) To restore the floor to its flat finish, lay a towel over the bubble.
(3) Using a hot iron, place the iron on the towel, pushing it down and moving it back and forth slightly to prevent scorching. Be careful not to touch the iron to the surface of the linoleum as this could cause melting or burning.
(4) Once the linoleum is heated, and while it is still hot, quickly cover the bubble with a piece of waxed paper and place a heavy object like a cast-iron pan or a small stack of books on top of the waxed paper.
(5) Let the area cool, undisturbed, for at least 12 hours. This method will reactivate the adhesive and help the linoleum to rebond to the floor base.
If the bubble fails to rebond to the floor, you may again puncture the bubble with a thick needle or the tip of a sharp craft knife and inject a small application of injectable adhesive designed for linoleum flooring. Remove the syringe, and immediately use a rolling pin to smooth the floor. Place a piece of waxed paper over the bubble, and weigh it down. Let it set for 12-24 hours.
How to Fix Large Bubbles
(1) To fix large bubbles in your linoleum flooring (larger than one inch), heat the linoleum using the above towel-and-iron method, taking care not to melt or scorch the linoleum.
(2) Once the linoleum is warm, remove the towel and using a sharp utility knife, carefully cut an X through the bubble while it is still hot and malleable.
(3) Carefully pull back the edges of the X and spread an even layer of an adhesive designed for linoleum beneath them.
(4) Fold the edges back down, ensuring that they are accurately in place, and wipe away any extra adhesive with a wet cloth.
(5) Place a piece of waxed paper over the bubble and smooth with a rolling pin. Remove the waxed paper and wipe the area again to remove any sealant that has oozed out onto the floor.
(6) Cover the bubble with a fresh piece of waxed paper and place a heavy object or stack of books on top. Leave it undisturbed for 12-24 hours.
Finishing the Floor
Once the bubble has been fixed, you may want to apply a vinyl flooring seam sealer to smooth and seal the repaired area. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the product label.