Removing Stains on Vinyl and Linoleum Flooring

Bathroom with vinyl flooring.
Vinyl and linoleum are both types of resilient flooring. Because they are very different in their composition, you will want to determine your flooring type before attempting to remove stains. This is a page about removing stains on vinyl or linoleum flooring.

43 Questions

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September 28, 2018

I've just moved a round bin from the kitchen floor to discover a circle underneath which has faded from dog wee! It's really obvious as it's a faded circle. Can anyone help please?

Thank you.


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September 28, 20181 found this helpful
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If it is linoleum and not vinyl, you can try sprinkling a layer of baking soda over the stain and spraying it with warm water until it is like a paste.


Leave it sit for an hour and then wipe off. Sometimes that works. Sometimes not. If it doesn't work, you can try a second time using a spray of plain white vinegar instead of the water (so the baking soda and vinegar will foam up). Same thing...leave it sit for an hour and wipe up.

If it is vinyl, then you can do the same thing, but after wiping up area, do a final wash down with a white rag soaked with plain 70% Isopropyl Alcohol (I can get a bottle for a dollar or less at our Dollar General). If you get higher % content where you live, add a little water to that may be too strong for the floor--we only ever use 70% in our house.

This is a tough sell either way so depending on the age of your floor, the length of time the stain set, and the concentration of the urine, it may or may not ever come out. Hopefully yours will be a success!

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October 17, 2016

My son has thrush and low and behold I got the purple dye gentian violet on the darn kitchen floor. It is linoleum, very light in color, so of course it is completely noticeable. I live in an apartment and rent, so I would like to get this stain off asap! Especially before a landlord notices, or well, even my husband for that matter.

Please help me, I have tried everything, dish soap, nail polish remover, rubbing alcohol, weird stain cleaners under my sink that I figured would at least do something, soap and water, a mild green pad, etc., etc. Nothing worked. Please help me!

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October 18, 2017

I've split nail polish remover on the linoleum tile floor of my rental unit. The result is a milky-white stain that seams to have eaten away the gloss of the linoleum. I tried vinegar, but that did nothing. Does anyone know how to get this discolouration out?


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October 20, 20170 found this helpful
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Here are a few facts you should know about your floor to help you out.

  1. Did the nail polish remover you used have acetone?
  2. The acetone will eat through the finish of your floor.
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  4. Also, it is important to know if your floor is really linoleum or is it one of the newer types of plastic floors with a shine to it?
  5. This is important to know this one. Because if the floor is really linoleum you can actually sand the spot on your floor and apply a new coat of wax to the area.
  6. Most linoleum floor is kept waxed and hopefully it is only the wax that has turned yellow.
  7. In this case a lightweight sand paper can remove the coat of wax that has turned white and you can apply another coat of wax to your floor.
  8. However, if this is one of the new plastic tile floor that is shinny you have ruined the shine on the floor and eaten through the flooring with the nail polish remover.
  9. I am so sorry there isn't much you can do with this now. You will need to replace the tile on the floor to fix this problem.
  10. Before attempting this you have nothing to loose to try sanding this down a bit to remove the wax and waxing it again to see if it helps.
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  12. If it doesn't work, then the tile itself needs to be replaced.
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August 9, 2016

I live by myself. One morning I got up and noticed that there are black spots in different areas of my vinyl floor. I don't know how they got there.

Nothing was dropped on it and it seems to be under the first layer of the vinyl floor. I don't understand. It is not cleanable.


September 9, 20160 found this helpful

Toilet bowl cleaner spilled on my linoleum, what can I do to remove it? Thanks

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August 27, 2004

We bought the trailer that we live in from a couple that we know and I did not notice this before we bought it. There is a yellowish stain around the vents on the linoleum floor (kitchen and bathrooms). I have tried everything that I know of to try and get this up. As far as I know there are no leaks or anything because my husband and my father-in-law made checked before we moved in.

I am wondering what this is? Did it happen when we moved the trailer to another location? And PLEASE how do I get it up? I need some major help, I hate it on my floors. If you have any suggestions please post it or email it to me at eescott182002 (at) yahoo (dot) com . Thank you very much and I sure hope somebody has some ideas!



August 30, 20040 found this helpful

Could it be wax build-up? That's what I get around my heating vents. I use a scraper and scrape it off.
Every so often, I strip my floor and re-wax.

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February 23, 20050 found this helpful

An easy way to see if it is wax buildup is to just take a little amonia mixed with water, just in a small paper cup, about half and half. Dab some on the yellowed area and wait a couple of minutes. It it turns sticky and comes up, then it is wax. If nothing happens,it could be heat damage and you will save scraping it and possibly damaging already brittle tile.


If you are lucky and it is wax, you can use amonia/water, about 1 pt ammonia to 3 pt water to strip just the small area and save yourself a ton of work.

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By Christa (Guest Post)
April 23, 20060 found this helpful

I got oven cleaner on my linoluem HELP it won't come out!!!

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By Christa (Guest Post)
April 23, 20060 found this helpful

I got oven cleaner on my linoluem HELP it won't come out!!!

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By AB (Guest Post)
January 8, 20071 found this helpful

Linoleum that has been covered will "amber". Expose it to light and it will recover with no problem.

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February 12, 2007

How do you clean old stains from the mat in the bathtub?


February 12, 20070 found this helpful

try a mr. clean magic eraser, scrub well, might help

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By Jean (Guest Post)
February 13, 20070 found this helpful

I assume you're talking about one of those rubber mats to keep from slipping.
If so, put it in the washing machine with a couple of old towels, detergent, and a cup of bleach.

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February 13, 20070 found this helpful

Thanks, but I mean stains on the bottom of the bathtub, not the mat

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February 13, 20070 found this helpful

WOW How wierd that I was going to ask a question like this when I opened this email. I bought a cheap off white bath mat a couple of weeks ago and now have yellow stains resembling that darned mat that I just cannot get out. I have used bleach,comet.baking soda.tilex, Mr clean and whatever else I had around here.

Good luck if you find something and please please post if you do~

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July 31, 2005

I am desperately trying to remove a stain from my kitchen linoleum floor. I had a supermarket plastic bag containing nectarines (that were mouldy and waiting to be taken back) on the floor and when I picked it up a couple of days later, the words and colour from the carrier bag had imprinted onto the floor, I think as a result of the juice from the nectarines that had leaked into the bag. I've scrubbed, bleached, erased and used methylated spirit and nothing works! Please help!

Fiona from Bristol


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July 31, 20050 found this helpful

Have you tried the Mr Clean Magic Eraser?

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By Kristen (Guest Post)
August 2, 20050 found this helpful

I don't know if this is the same, but when I got my puppy the same thing happened with the newspapers he was using. I thought it was never going to come out but after washing the floor several times (with regular cleaners, I think I use polmolive or something) over the course of a month or so it eventually came out (or wore off) on its own.

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December 19, 20050 found this helpful

i don't know if methlylated spirit is the same, but acetone-containing nail polish remover can do it.

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March 17, 2015

I have a dark stain on my kitchen floor that starts under my fridge and winds its way to the edge of my living room. We've checked under the fridge and found nothing. We've not spilled, dropped or splashed anything on the floor. It just appeared over night.

By Mary S

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August 8, 2011

I have some "rust" colored spots that are on my vinyl that I can't mop, scrub, or bleach out. They almost look like burn spots, but they are not. So my floor never looks clean. My husband says it may be something coming through from the subfloor. My vinyl is white with a light blue pattern. It's in great shape other than that. Any suggestions to get these spots out?

By Denise from GA

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June 27, 2008

I can't get a stain off linoleum floor from Heinz 57, it left a yellow stain. I tried cleaning with all purpose cleaner with bleach and it did not work.

Annettemace from Waxahachie, TX

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August 9, 2009

I have a linoleum floor that has a pink stain on it. It looks like something drained out of the dishwasher onto the floor, Kool-Aid? Not sure. I think it's been there for a long time. I've tried Mr. Clean eraser, bleach, and ammonia, all separately, nothing works.

By Lynn Valverde from Surprise, AZ

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August 6, 2018

It's been 4 months since a hail storm knocked out my front windows. The rain came in and the dye from the curtains stained my linoleum floors. I tried rubbing alcohol, nail polish remover, CLR, baking soda, Magic Eraser, and several other bathroom cleaning products.

Nothing has worked. Please help me save my floor.

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August 5, 2017

How do I get stains of oxidation out of my linoleum around my floor vents and also get stains of yellowing off floor left by rubber back throw rugs?

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March 2, 2017

Large pink stains have suddenly appeared on my mum's kitchen lino. I have checked underneath and all looks fine, no staining at all, and no damp.

She says nothing has been spilt. We have tried cleaning with bleach with no luck. Any ideas?

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March 12, 2008

How do I get oil spots off linoleum caused by casters?

Doreen from Cranbrook, BC, Canada

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