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How To Whitewash Vinyl Laminate Flooring

  • Zak 
whitewash vinyl, how to whitewash vinyl floors

This article is going to explain the step-by-step instructions on how to whitewash vinyl laminate flooring.

As most of you know, vinyl laminate flooring is an affordable, processed, resilient, and incredibly good-looking type of flooring. With the advancement of technology, vinyl laminate flooring offers homeowners the option to style their floors with a product that can appear like hardwood, ceramic, or stone.

It’s water-resistant, scratch-resistant, and easy to install as it comes in sheets or tiles that have a click-and-lock mechanism.

What Is Whitewashing?

Whitewashing refers to the process of restyling or painting floors with whitewash, which is a type of paint made from slaked lime or chalk calcium carbonate.

With respect to wood floors, for example, by using whitewash, you can add a layer of white without concealing or completely covering the grain.

The process requires you to sand down the wood panel to remove the top coat or sealant that is usually applied to most wood floors before they are sold to the public.

Once this has been done, the floor can be whitewashed.

Can You Whitewash Vinyl Laminate Flooring?

Yes, you can whitewash vinyl laminate flooring using a specific process that prevents damage while maximizing the results.

Much like wood floors, vinyl laminate flooring has been treated with a top coat to enhance it’s appearance.

The clear top coat makes this type of flooring appear shiny and smooth while adding an extra layer of protection from moisture damage.

For this reason, it’s important that the top coat be removed from the vinyl flooring before you proceed to whitewash.


Step 1: Prepare The Surface

It is imperative that you clean the floor before applying the whitewash mixture to avoid poor results.

Sweep or vacuum the floor to remove dust and dirt, or wash and mop the floor to remove stubborn stains and marks.

Make sure the floor is dry before you move on to the next step.

Step 2: Sand Down The Floor

Using 220-grit sandpaper, sand down the vinyl laminate flooring to remove the top coat or sealant.

Follow the grain while sanding without applying too much pressure.

Thereafter, clean up the floors before you apply the whitewash mixture.

Step 3: Apply The Whitewash

Typically, you can find products that are specifically marketed for Whitewashing that have manufacturer instructions on the back of the tin.

I’d advise you to follow those instructions; however, you may need to dilute the whitewash to reach the desired opacity for your floor.

In some scenarios, you could mix white latex paint with water to create a mixture that works on vinyl laminate flooring.

Before applying the whitewash to the floor, do a patch test in an inconspicuous spot and examine the result.

If it looks good, proceed to apply the whitewash mixture using a sponge, a soft cloth, or a lambswool applicator.

Working your way from one corner of the floor to the next, apply an even and thin layer of the mixture in the direction of the grain. As far as possible, don’t leave puddles or drops of mixture on the floor to ensure an even surface.

Step 4: Allow to dry

Once you’ve applied the whitewash across the floor, you have to let it cure.

Drying time may vary depending on temperature, humidity, and the extent of the application.

Generally, it is advisable to wait 24 hours before walking on the floor or finishing the surface.

Step 5: Apply a top coat

It’s best to add a sealant or protective top coat once the floor has dried to maximize the shiny appearance and prevent damage from moisture in the future.

Either an acrylic sealer or clear polyurethane can be used on your vinyl laminate flooring that has been whitewashed.

Allow the top coat to cure and dry before you insert furniture back onto the floor.

Should You Sand After Whitewashing?

It is not necessary to sand after whitewashing if you manage to achieve the desired opacity and result.

However, if the floor appears too white or if it later becomes too thick, you could use fine-grit sandpaper to remove some of the whitewash.

This should also assist in removing spots or streaks that may have set into the floor during the application.

It is advisable to apply a top coat after sanding floors to add protection and enhance the appearance of the floor.

Final Thoughts

That brings us to the end of this article on how to whitewash vinyl laminate flooring.

It is more than possible to whitewash vinyl as long as you take the time to gently sand down the floor and apply a whitewash mixture of the correct opacity.

By following the advice in this article, you should be able to achieve whitewashed vinyl laminate floors that look beautiful.

But, to be on the safe side, I’d recommend employing the services of a professional who can whitewash your floors for you to avoid permanent damage or discoloration by doing it yourself.

With that being said, I hope you found this article to be helpful and easy to follow. Be sure to check out some of our other flooring articles linked below.

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Can you use vinyl flooring on walls?

How to make laminate flooring less slippery

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