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I am installing some new vinyl plank, and I have an issue where my dining room (linoleum) and living room (laminate) meet. The dining room is about 3/8" higher than the living room. I want to run the vinyl across both rooms without using a transition strip and get rid of this annoying bump. Is there a way I can raise the floor to be level and flush without tearing out the old lino (it could contain asbestos and I don't want to disturb it).

From what I could ascertain so far, I think I would have to rip out the laminate and lay plywood across the whole living room. Is there a quicker and more affordable option here?

Thanks for the help!

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  • Floating laminate comes out so easily I've never understood why a person would leave it in. Is that what we're talking about? I guess you could save expense on underlayment, but.... – isherwood Dec 2 '20 at 21:45
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I would always remove floating laminate before installing a new flooring. For one thing, it's probably not an approved substrate for your new product--you'll likely void the warranty by leaving it in. For another, you open yourself up to unwanted movement and noise.

So yes, remove the laminate and its underlayment (felt, foam) if present. Then assess the height difference. If it's about 3/4" like you describe, I'd overlay and screw down 3/4" tongue-and-groove OSB. It's about as cheap as you'll find for 3/4" material.

If you then have a small height discrepancy you can skim some floor leveler across that transition, feathering it out with a straight trowel for at least 12-16".

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