Can I install laminate flooring over vinyl flooring?

Many homeowners ask whether or not they can install laminate flooring over vinyl flooring. The short answer is yes, you can install laminate flooring over vinyl flooring. However, there are special things to consider.

How To Do It Right

Laminate flooring can be installed over vinyl as long as:

  • The vinyl is level
  • The vinyl is in good condition
  • The vinyl is cleared of all debris and cleaned
  • You use underlayment on top of the vinyl subfloor

Special Considerations

You may want to consider pulling up the vinyl flooring if:

  • If your vinyl is not perfectly smooth and level
  • If the vinyl was glued down
    • When using a glue-down vinyl as a subfloor, it must be level and in good condition. If there is any peeling, gaps or damage, you should not use this as a subfloor. An underlayment will still be required over top of a glue down vinyl subfloor.

The subfloor underneath the vinyl should be in good condition and level as well before tying to install laminate flooring on top of it.

How to choose laminate flooring underlayment

If you decide to install laminate flooring over vinyl flooring, remember to first clear the vinyl of any debris and obstacles. It is important to have the floor as flat and well prepared as possible to allow the laminate to be smooth and seamless when installed.

If you have any questions, please write them in the comments below or call us at 1-800-520-0961 and our sales representatives can help you with your purchase!

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*This post was updated from 2014 to give you a better reading experience!

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  1. Hi Francine! If the vinyl that you have is a floating floor, you would have to uninstall that vinyl in order to replace it with laminate or engineered wood. If the vinyl is glued down to your subfloor, you would be able to install a floating laminate or floating engineered wood over top.

  2. Francine H Jackson

    I have vinyl plank flooring with the attached underlayment. It is almost a year old but I am just not happy with it. It is installed over concrete subfloor. It is good quality vinyl flooring. Ca I install engineering wood or lqminq53 over it?

  3. Hi Joe, thanks for the question. You can install laminate over the tile as long as you have a level starting point. You may need to use concrete leveler to create a smooth surface before you begin your installation.

  4. I have cement floors and can not get up all the 12″x12″ vinyl tiles for someone used some adhesive to glue them down Can I put 7mm laminate down with a 2 in 1 underlayment?

  5. Hi Lee, thanks for the question. I would add a transition t-molding or reducer between the kitchen and dining room to transition room to room without issues. I hope that helps! If you need more COREtec information, give us a call at 800-520-0961

  6. I have sheet vinyl over 1/4″ luan underlayment in my kitchen, and carpet in my dining room. I intend to remove the carpet and install 1/4″ luan over top of subfloor in the dining room. My intention is to install Cortec Pro Plus SPC planks so to make one entire floor in both rooms. I want to leave the sheet vinyl in place in the kitchen. Will the slight transition (approx. 1/16″) at the end of the existing vinyl cause any problem, or show up in the finished floor? The vinyl planks will be crossing the transition perpendicular to the end of the sheet vinyl.
    Thank you for your advice.

  7. Hi Myriam, thanks for the question. If you’re flooring is glued down and in good condition (no peeling corners, level), you can install your laminate over. You will still need to add a foam underlayment beneath the laminate. I am not sure how significant the heat loss will be, but keep in mind you are added more layers in which the heat needs to penetrate. If your laminate is very thick, it may be more significant. You will lose some heat transfer, but it will still keep the laminate from feeling cold.

  8. Hello, I have a vinyl floor and underfloor heating and would like to install laminate.
    My vinyl floor is glued down but in good condition.
    Is it necessary to remove the vinyl and screed the floor or can I lay the laminate on top of the vinyl? does leaving the vinyl under the laminate impact the heat coming through in a substantial way? is this not recommended or will my heat loss be minimal?
    thank you!

  9. Hi Tammy, thanks for reaching out. Laminate flooring is moisture resistant, but not waterproof. Even if you install over glue down vinyl, the laminate flooring will still not be waterproof and in the event of a spill or flood, the flooring would be damaged. What is your budget? We have some very budget friendly vinyl plank options that we would definitely recommend, and vinyl will be 100% waterproof. Give us a call, we would be happy to send you some free samples and work with you on best pricing. Hope this helps!

  10. Hi i would like to put down laminate flooring in my kitchen but can’t afford the water proof stuff. I currently have glued down vinyl in good condition would this water proof it if I laid the laminate over it many thanks

  11. Hi Walker, thanks for reaching out. We always recommend installing flooring on a subfloor that is completely level. With that, we highly recommend removing the vinyl flooring, because you might run into issues down the road with the floor bucking and being visibly uneven at the transition point. Please give us a call if you have any further questions! 1-800-520-0961

  12. I have glue down vinyl sheet flooring and will have once I remove carpet concrete as my subfloors. I would like to eliminate removal of the vinyl however I’m concerned about the 2 translation points ( sheet vinyl to concrete) can I feather this out on the concrete side so it won’t be noticeable and then continue to lay vapor barrier over the concrete part overlapping the sheet vinyl ? Then padding over all the floors or would this not work and I have to remove the vinyl?

  13. Hi Sharon, thank you for reaching out! Based on what you described to us, you can go ahead and install laminate flooring over the old vinyl that is glued to the subfloor. First, uninstall the existing vinyl and clean off the subfloor, making sure it is flat, smooth and dry. The old vinyl will act as a moisture barrier, and you will need to install underlayment to allow your laminate floor to float. Below is a link to an underlayment we would recommend. You can go ahead and install laminate flooring of your choice on top of the underlayment. Please let us know if we can answer any other questions or help you find the perfect laminate for your projects. Best of luck!

  14. I have a vinyl that is not attached or glued to the sub flooring material. When you lift it up, there is an old hard plastic sheet (1970s stuff) of previous flooring,that is glued to plywood, glued to cement sub flooring. The vinly sheet lays flat on top of that stuff. Could we just take the vinyl off and leave whats under there, then, lay in laminate on top, as long as its flush? What substance would we use between the old plastic sheet and the new laminate to make it work?

  15. Hi Eduardo! Thanks for the question.
    1. Yes, your vinyl flooring will provide a moisture barrier, however, you will need to installed a foam underlayment on top.
    2. Laminate can be installed over glue-down vinyl. There are some things to keep in mind with this – all planks need to be firmly glued (no peeling, gaps, etc.) and the floor needs to be level. If there are some planks that do not meet this, or there is an un-level subfloor, you must fix it or un-install the planks.
    3. I would recommend using an underlayment that has thermal properties, such as Floor Muffler or Kronoswiss ProVent, which includes a moisture barrier and insulation.
    4. You should not install foam insulation over your subfloor. To install the laminate, you must have a solid base (subfloor) to put the laminate on top of. A foam insulation would provide an unstable, cushioned surface which can cause stress to the floating floor joints.

    I hope this helps! Please let us know if you have any additional questions.

  16. I see that to the question “Can I install laminate flooring over vinyl flooring?” you answer yes with some caveats (good condition, level, clean vinyl). My floor meets all these conditions. However you also say that (i) it is not recommended if the vinyl has been glued and (ii) that an underlayment is needed. I have the following questions:
    1- In general, does well laid, level, clean and old vinyl flooring provide a moisture barrier?
    2- Why cannot laminate be installed over vinyl tiles that have been glued?
    3- In the latter case, instead of pulling up the vinyl tiles (a major, messy piece of work) can I put plastic, then foam underlayment and then laminate?
    4- Can I install rigid foam insulation over the vinyl floor, then laminate on top, or do I still need underlayment on top of the insulation?

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