petrified carpet foam - Posted by Anne

Posted by Anne on January 24, 2000 at 12:10:43:

Hi Nancy,
Thanks for your post. Since the floor appears to be in good shape (at least in the places I’ve looked at so far) I’m hoping to avoid refinishing- but would like to get the red stuff up. My contractor suggested buffing with acetone and cheesecloth after the red stuff is gone, then using floor oil. I’ll keep in mind what you say about the paint stripper though.
Thanks, Anne

petrified carpet foam - Posted by Anne

Posted by Anne on January 24, 2000 at 10:59:29:

Hi all,
I’ve got a 20-year old carpet on top of a 20-year old foam pad in the living room of my recently purchased rental house. Underneath is a lovely blonde maple floor in great shape. Only problem is that beneath the 20-year old pad is another much older red pad that has petrified- it’s very thin, hard and crusty. I’ve begun to cut up the carpet for removal, but the red stuff is stuck to the wood in places, and will require time and effort to remove. I can’t scrape without scratching the wood. In addition, the wood has a red tinge from the old foam. Water won’t clean it, but acetone gets the wood back to normal color (but doesn’t remove the red clumps). Anyone have any experience with this kind of project?

Re: petrified carpet foam - Posted by Jim IL

Posted by Jim IL on January 25, 2000 at 12:13:53:

Even though you are hoping to avoid sanding, it may be the best route.
Remember, after you remove the “Red stuff” from the floor, there may be other imperfections that come to light, like scratches and grooves.
I did a floor last year like this.
The carpet has disintegrated and the padding (two layers too) was hard as a rock and stuck to the floor.
We used a “remover” solution we bought at “Home Depot” for getting the padding and some glue up.
Next, we rented a drum sander from the local rent-all store.
That took all day, but the floor was smooth as a babies bottom.
We then put a coat of poly-something or other on it, let it dry, and applied another coat.
The floor turned out great, and made the home bright ans looking rather new.
We got it sold fast.
In my area, hard wood floors are returning to popularity, so that was a plus for us.
This was hard work, and took us a total of three days to do, but only cost me about $300 to redo an entire 1300 sq/ft house.
Well worth it in my book.

Good luck,
Jim IL

Re: petrified carpet foam - Posted by Nicole_AZ

Posted by Nicole_AZ on January 25, 2000 at 10:25:07:

If this is a property that you are planning on renting (it wasn’t completely clear from your post), I would advise against wood floors unless it is an upscale house that will have more responsible tenants. A lot of things can damage wood floors and you will be looking at repair jobs after every vacancy.

Re: petrified carpet foam - Posted by Tim Jensen

Posted by Tim Jensen on January 24, 2000 at 21:44:03:


The easiest and best way to handle this problem is to hire a company to come in and SAND ONLY the floors. Then all you have to do is come back and apply the sealer. There is no need to waste a lot of time with this. In my area, I have a guy who will sand only the floors for $1.00 a square foot. It is money well spent.

Good Luck,

Tim Jensen

Re: petrified carpet foam - Posted by GL

Posted by GL on January 24, 2000 at 17:24:11:

I have removed tile laid on hardwood floors with black glue, and also with black glue and felt paper. What a mess! The worst! What a H of a job!

If I ever run into that again I will put in new carpet or linoleum. Quicker cleaner and cheaper. I recommend you do the same.

If it is for your own use, and you are nuts about hardwood floors ( or just plain nuts) you will have to experiment. Try a scraper on a small section. One of those razor blade jobs from the hardware. Maybe some Varsol (paint thinner not stripper). Open all the windows and doors.

Or a heat gun may soften it and lift it up.Along with a scraper.

If you use acetone or paint stripper you are in danger of permanent lung damage from the fumes.

Re: petrified carpet foam - Posted by Nancy Cason

Posted by Nancy Cason on January 24, 2000 at 11:27:29:

If you are going to redo the floors, that will require sanding and 2-3 coats of polyurethane.

So if that is what you intend - try a little paint stripper to see if that will remove the old foam.

If you use paint stripper on the entire floor prior to sanding it may make the job quicker. If you use the orbital sander it takes a very long time to get down to the new wood.

A drum sander is quicker but harder to use.

After reading a couple of post here on refinishing floors. My husband and I used the orbital sander and we were exhausted by the end of the day. The floors came out nice. However it really is a lot of work.

Have fun