Follow our expert instructions for painting vinyl flooring. See if this quick vanity fix is the right choice for you. 

By Brian Santos and Hannah Bruneman

Ordinarily, painting vinyl and linoleum flooring isn't recommended. The surfaces don't accept paint well and are likely to be dirty, stained, or waxed, which further inhibits paint bonding. And painting won't hide holes or dents. If at all possible, tear up old flooring and replace it. But if you absolutely have to have a quick fix for a single event, for instance, and aren't worried about long-term durability, you can dramatically change a room's look. Keep on reading to see how you can get the best results for this painting project. 

  • Working time 5 hrs
  • Start to finish 2 days
  • Difficulty Kind of hard
  • Involves Sanding, Painting

What you need


How to do it

Step 1

Prep Floor

Before painting vinyl that's in sound condition, test the paint on an inconspicuous spot to make sure it will look okay when complete. Let the paint dry completely to get the best idea of what it will look like. 

If you're happy with the color, sand the vinyl with 220-grit sandpaper to dull the shine. Avoid back paint from sanding on your hands and knees with a sanding pole. This tool looks and is easy to use like a floor duster, but has sandpaper on the end of the pole. Apply a good amount of pressure to buff your floors smooth. 

Step 2

Apply Deglosser

Once the floor is sanded, wipe clean. Use a paint roller with an extra-long adjustable handle to apply a liquid deglosser to the floor's surface. This layer will improve bonding with the paint. As you paint the room, begin at a corner or wall opposite the entrance to the room and work your way back. This will make sure you don't paint your way into a corner with no way out. Let dry.

Step 3

Prime and Paint

Before painting, prep the room. If you're not painting the trim of the room, line the walls with painter's tape. 

First, prime the floor with one layer of primer. Use the extended roller brush that you used to apply the deglosser, as well as the same technique. Once the primer is dry, brush on one or two coats of your paint. You may find it easier to use a hand brush for painting the edges of the room for better control. Allow time in-between coats to dry. Carefully remove painter's tape from the trim. 


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