Q We want to redo our bathroom floor ... again. It originally had linoleum on the floor; we put down about 20 years ago the 12-by-12-inch squares on top of the linoleum. These squares have a slightly raised pattern on them; over the years, they have shifted.
We would like to know how to go about putting either 1) another layer on top of the squares, although I don't think that would work because of the raised pattern, or 2) try to peel off the top layer of 12-by-12 squares, of which I am afraid of what we would end up with, or find out it's a horrible job, or maybe they wouldn't come up at all.
Cindy Lidd, DesPlaines
A You're right that you wouldn't want to put a new floor on top of the existing tiles, said Steve Fantuzzi of Floors Inc. in Woodstock. It's usually easy to remove the tiles with a tile scraper. Then lightly sand away any adhesive residue from the surface of the underlying linoleum floor. If the linoleum is in stable condition, there's no problem installing the new floor tiles on top of it again, he said.
Other options include removing the linoleum and then installing the new tiles on the underlying plywood or screwing down a quarter-inch layer of plywood on top of the linoleum then laying the new tiles. Be aware that adding plywood may increase the floor height too much, Fantuzzi said.