How to Get Air Bubbles Out of Vinyl Flooring

Murray Anderson

How to Get Air Bubbles Out of Vinyl Flooring. Your beautiful vinyl kitchen floor that's just a few years old, has suddenly developed some annoying and very unattractive air bubbles. How did they get there? But more important, how do you get them out without ruining your floor? Here's how.

  1. Understand that air bubbles can occur at any time, although they are most common shortly after a new vinyl floor has been put down. Moisture (either coming out of the wood subfloor itself or from moist air below the floor) rises up and gets trapped under the vinyl flooring, causing bubbles.

  2. Eliminate small air bubbles (an inch or so in diameter) using a sharp needle to prick the bubble and allow the air to escape.

  3. Reseal the tiny hole using a piece of cloth and a hot iron and weigh down the area for a few hours until the floor bonds back together, or roll the area using a heavy flooring roller.

  4. Get rid of larger bubbles by first putting a hot iron on a piece of cloth over the top of the bubble to soften the flooring.

  5. Use your utility knife to cut an "X" over the bubble. Peel back the flooring, then apply a small amount of flooring adhesive. A syringe is a good way to control the amount of adhesive you put down.

  6. Fold the cut pieces back into place, cover the area with waxed paper and weigh it down for a day or at least overnight.

  7. Finish by removing the weights, uncovering the area and cleaning up any excess flooring adhesive that seeped onto the surface.


These methods will work for both sheet vinyl or vinyl tiles, but if your floor is made of vinyl tiles it might be just as easy to simply replace the bubbled tile with a new one (assuming you saved some of the original tiles from the installation). Use your iron and cloth to heat the bubbled tile and soften the glue to make it easier to remove.


Be sure you don't use too much flooring adhesive when resealing your tiles. Use too much and it will ooze all over the floor and you'll end up with a gooey, sticky mess to clean up.