Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 19

Thread: Removing Floor Staples

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    1,186

    Removing Floor Staples

    Wife and I are removing our ultra ugly kitchen floor. It consists of a top layer of faux wood vinyl, 2 layers of linoleum, a layer of paper and a 1/8" thick layer of glue(?). The "glue" layer is a dark red and is a gummy/brittle.

    The linoleum is attached to the floor with 1"x1/4" round staples. They are almost impossible to remove. When we pop off the linoleum, the staples stay put. We are doing this because all of our neighbors have gorgeous wood floors in their kitchens.

    We are unable to get the staples out using an assortment of pliers & screw drivers.

    Anyone have any suggestions on removing them?

    Thanks,
    Burt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Carol Stream Illinois
    Posts
    592
    Burt,

    I have removed staples like that with a small pry bar, it may need to be ground a bit to fit under the top of the "u". Do wear saftey glasses, I also had to use a small hammer to drive the pry bar under the "u", not a fun job to be sure.

    Heather
    Last edited by Heather Thompson; 09-07-2008 at 8:15 PM.
    Any thing with sharp teeth eats meat.
    Most powertools have sharp teeth.
    People are made of meat.

  3. #3
    I'd cut them off as close to the floor as possible with a pair of snips, then hammer whatever remains into the floor, using a nail set if necessary.
    Deflation: When I was a kid, an E-ticket meant I was about to go on the ride of my life. Today, an E-ticket means a miserable ride.

  4. #4
    having tore up hundreds of floors i usually just pound them flush unless there is an issue like going threw the ceiling below

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    1,186
    The staples are about 50+ years old, or at least dated back to when they were first used. The house is about 65 years old.

    They tend to break regardless of the removal method. Since we will have the floors sanded professionally, will driving broken staples into the floor create another problem down the road?

    Thanks,
    Burt

  6. #6
    Didn't get that part in your original post. The original floor is in good enough shape to sand and refinish?

    Then, yeah, remove them.
    Deflation: When I was a kid, an E-ticket meant I was about to go on the ride of my life. Today, an E-ticket means a miserable ride.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    1,186
    The rest of the house has stunning old hardwood floors. When we bought the house the floors were covered with thick ugly carpets. The owners told us that the original wood floor was intact so we ripped up the carpet and had the floors done. Beautiful!

    So now it's time to attack the ugly kitchen. We removed a small hallway segment and ran into the problem with the staples. Seems like the stapler person really loved his job as there are staples about every 4".

    I can't imagine trying to remove the staples from the main part of the kitchen. Both my wife and I are no spring chickens.

    Getting the various sub flooring up was reasonable but we are currently defeated by the staples. I'm concerned that they would damage a sander.

    Burt

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    West of Ft. Worth, TX
    Posts
    5,803
    Burt, thinking out loud here and I don't know if it exists or not, but maybe some type of puller with a slide bar? Something that will grab under the staple, then has a weight on a slide that when you pull it up hard, it pulls the staple out. But if the staples are brittle and break anyway, there may not be a method or tool that will work.
    I would think that the sander would have major problems, and you would end up with a lot of extra expense for sanding pad/drum replacements. Not sure what the floor would look like even if you could get all the staples out. Thats a lot of holes in the floor. I somehow doubt that filling them would make them disappear either.
    Other than suggesting pulling the hard wood out and redoing it, or going with a laminate wood floor, I'm not sure what to suggest. Sorry. Jim.
    Coolmeadow Setters...Exclusively Irish! When Irish Eyes are smiling....They're usually up to something!!
    Home of Irish Setter Rescue of North Texas.
    No, I'm not an electrician. Any information I share is purely what I would do myself. If in doubt, hire an electrician!
    Member of the G0691 fan club!
    At a minimum, I'm Pentatoxic...Most likely I'm a Pentaholic. There seems to be no known cure. Pentatonix, winners of The Sing Off, s3.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    1,186
    Jim,
    I don't mind the staple holes. In a way, it's part of the charm of an old wooden floor. One of the amazing things about this floor is every board is from a different tree. It's the Joseph's Technicolor Coat of floors so a few holes actually add to the charm.

    Burt

  10. #10
    Vice grips, clamp the head onto the staple rite against the floor, and roll the round part of the vise grip head to pull the staple out.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    1,186
    What worked was channel lock pliers. The angle of grab and the camming action of the head makes easy removal. We were able to get about 90% just pulling them out. A number of them broke. Some we were able to extract but there are still a few stubs sticking up that I guess we'll have to hammer in.

    Thanks for all the suggestions.
    Burt

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Washington, NC
    Posts
    2,124
    Quote Originally Posted by Burt Alcantara View Post
    Jim,
    I don't mind the staple holes. In a way, it's part of the charm of an old wooden floor. One of the amazing things about this floor is every board is from a different tree. It's the Joseph's Technicolor Coat of floors so a few holes actually add to the charm.

    Burt
    I am unclear about your situation. Was all the linoleum, etc. laid on top of a finished (hardwood) floor or a subfloor? Are the staples around the perimeter or all over the entire floor (to hold the linoleum down before applying the faux wood vinyl)?

    Your description makes it sound like the staples are in a subfloor so am unclear where the sander comes in. Are you trying to refinish existing hardwood or using the sander to remove the paper and adhesive from the subfloor before installing new hardwood? Be careful, the paper backing on many old floor coverings contained asbestos so the dust is hazardous.

    For either situation, try using a tile removal tool for the adhesive and the staples. The tool is a substantial (slightly heavy) long handled (you use it standing upright) steel bar with a sharp-edged trowel-like end that is used for removing tile and works quite well on adhesive. They are available at home centers (to buy) and rental centers. The combination of the weight and sharp edge make it easy to remove tile. It should also clip off your staples. Staple remnants sticking up can be driven in with a hammer if you are working on a subfloor. If you are working on the surface of the original hardwood floor, you will need to either fully remove the staples or drive them below the surface with a nail set. A floor sander equipped with a 36 grit abrasive will probably sand off the staples also, but any staples flush with the surface will likely be visible and can even stain the wood floor, especially if water-based poly is used for the sanding sealer and/or topcoats.
    Last edited by Alan Schaffter; 09-08-2008 at 12:50 AM.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Wichita, Kansas
    Posts
    1,795
    Quote Originally Posted by Burt Alcantara View Post
    ... Some we were able to extract but there are still a few stubs sticking up that I guess we'll have to hammer in.
    Be aware that if you don't get the stubs either removed or set to a level that will be below the sanded surface you stand a very good chance of having ugly black stains generated by the powdered metal in the sanding residue.

    Any tannin in the wood will react with iron in the presence of moisture to stain and discolor the surrounding wood. I don't recall if you said what the floors are made from, but oak is very prone to such staining as are many other wood species.
    Tom Veatch
    Wichita, KS
    USA

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lewiston, Idaho
    Posts
    23,805
    Burt,

    I did the same thing you are doing some years ago. I just used a pair of visegrips. I locked it onto the staple and the rolled the visegrips on the convex shap of it. It cammed them right out.
    Ken

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Crawfordville Florida Near Tallahassee
    Posts
    42
    Burt, Lee Valley sells several styles of nail pullers. Good Luck , Jim Gerus

Similar Threads

  1. Removing a fireplace???
    By Bryan Rocker in forum Off Topic Forum
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 11-18-2007, 1:48 PM
  2. Removing backing from mirror
    By Robert Rosensteel in forum Engravers Forum
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-25-2007, 9:50 PM
  3. Need HELP? Removing water spots from crystal vases?
    By James & Zelma Litzmann in forum Engravers Forum
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 04-17-2007, 8:23 PM
  4. Removing Stains from Granite
    By Dan Mages in forum Off Topic Forum
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-06-2007, 9:11 PM
  5. Removing tape measure from Table Saw
    By Don Frambach in forum General Woodworking and Power Tools
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 12-12-2005, 10:49 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •