How to Remove Sticky Residue from Vinyl Flooring?

Vinyl material presents gorgeous and low maintenance on floors. Most homeowners always desire vinyl floors where they are easy to clean and provide a realistic floor surface, and you can work your craft projects on it. Sticky residue is one of the most frustrating home remodelings odd jobs is trying to remove a vinyl floor. If you pull the linoleum off, things only get worse. So, sticky residue appears like an impossible task to get it off from the floor, but you can quickly get it out from the floor with the aid from household items.

On the other hand, you can use simple cleaner tools like vinyl floor mops to remove the sticky residue, and at times it requires drying the sticky substance first. Below you will know some of the easy steps to get the sticky residue off the floor.

How to Remove Sticky Residue from Vinyl Flooring

Steps on How to Remove Sticky Residue from Vinyl Flooring

Removing sticky residue from vinyl flooring is generally quite tricky because the vinyl floor is a standard subflooring, which can absorb the sticky glue to discolor your floor. You must remove the linoleum glue from any subfloor because some older adhesives had oils that chemically counter with new vinyl to cause yellow discoloration. Most of the vinyl flooring manufactures do not provide a warranty for this type of failure.

So follow carefully the instruction below:

Wear gloves

Before using any cleaning substances, ware hand gloves that save you from any kind of chemical reaction because some cleaning substances contain harsh chemicals.

Clean with Nail Polish Remover

You may know that nail polish remover contains acetone that is absolutely a glue remover in your hand.

Things You Will Need

Take a small plastic scraper and gently apply pressure on the sticky glue area to remove as much glue from the floor as possible. Be careful, too much pressure will mar the floor surface. Take a wet cotton cloth with a small amount of nail polish remover. Your cloth should not be soaked to do the task. Gently wipe at the spot of glue with your cloth until the adhesive softens.

Before using acetone, make sure to apply the agent on an as inconspicuous area to test its safety on the vinyl surface. Acetone can be alternate for acetone-based nail polish cleaner if used carefully on a cotton mop. You can purchase it at your local hardware store.

Use Cleaning Agent

Vinyl floors can tolerate many cleaners, but if you have to notice that the surface might discolor during the cleaning process. When you use bleach to clean, then apply it on a small area first.

Start with the cleaning agent on the cloth or directly to the sticky residue on the floor. When you start with the cleaning agent on the cloth, ensure that the fabric is wet sufficiently with the detergent. But you have to take the fabric that is clean as a dirty cloth can scratch the vinyl flooring or leave it with dirty slips.

Wipe the affected area

After weeping the cloth in the cleaning detergent, you will continue to wipe the area thoroughly to remove the sticky residue. You will do this in circular motions that make sure the area is clean. Use warm water as it works effectively. It also removes the dark stains on the vinyl flooring.

When you use to clean away any remaining residue, make sure that you are using fresh and dirt-free cloth or mop.

Best Cleaning Agent

On the other hand, you can use a non-abrasive sponge to clean the area thoroughly with mild dish soap and water. Rinse systematically with distilled water and wipe dry with a clean, dry cloth such as a soft dishtowel (you use a paper towel). Sometimes you should clean your vinyl floor with warm water that brings practical support.

To remove sticky gum or adhesive residue on a vinyl floor, use a white, sulfur-free eraser or melamine eraser to take away the mess by rubbing gently.

For a glossy finishing, you may use an alternative method as the erasers could create scuff marks that can damage the gloss. So, apply a clean, soft rag to use cooking oil and rub gently to dislodge to remove gum and adhesive remnants.

Maintain Regular Cleaning

Usually, your vinyl floors get sticky when food or other drinks spills. Sometimes you are walking with dirty or wet feet; they also get some residues on the floor. So it is not so complicated to cleaning residues on the vinyl floor. If you know the proper way, then you can be sure of better cleaning. Regular cleaning is the best way to keep your floor in its best looking.


Do not use ammonia on vinyl floors because it has an acidic element that may damage the vinyl. Before cleaning, always test the agent on an inconspicuous location to ensure it is appropriate and does not damage the vinyl. Use gloves and protective goggles, and work in a well-ventilated area. Open all the windows and doors to a peek sound ventilation system in the room, because the cleaning agent harms your family health if it is inhaled by particularly to pets and children.


How to remove glue from vinyl flooring?

Usually, Adhesive components like glue are challenging to remove from the floor. However, if you got vinyl flooring installed, it won’t be any challenging task. Take some warm water mixed with floor cleaner/ soap and apply it all over the floor. Wipe the floor with a cotton cloth, and the glue will be removed easily. If the spots are stubborn, use your hairdryer/ heat gun to clean the glue more effectively.

How to remove adhesive from vinyl flooring

There would be so many ways to do that. Among them one of the ways is to use the nail-polish remover along with the wet cotton. Softly wipe across the spot line and this will work!

Does Mineral Spirits Remove Sticky Residue

Mineral spirits work great on glass and glazed surfaces and are barely used on floorings. However for spot cleaning of the residue, you may try this out. 

Does Baking Soda Remove Sticky Residue

Does Vinegar Remove Sticky Residue

Vinegar is the best solution for removing the sticky residue. Also, it is a natural solution without making any discoloration.


At the end of the discussion, you should avoid harsh chemicals and abrasives cleaners when removing dirt and sticky residues from the vinyl floor. If your subfloor is natural hardwood, please hire a professional cleaner, because your new floors aren’t damaged during the removal process.

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