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Old 07-06-2009, 02:58 PM   #1
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Best way to pull up rubber mat?

I'm at the point that I'm ready to pull up the rubber mat to see how bad the floor is underneath. But, like the sheet metal on the side, I'm having trouble freeing the screws. Unlike the sheet metal, the screws that hold down the mat are flush with the metal so I can't get at them with a grinder. I've used PB Breaker to soak them a couple days in a row, but still no joy.

How did you guys deal with stubborn rubber mat removal? What tools did you use? How difficult was it and how long did it take?
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Old 07-06-2009, 07:07 PM   #2
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Re: Best way to pull up rubber mat?

I gave up on the rubber, it is a pain. Try to find any soft spots or areas that you think are damaged and strip a little there, if it is good keep hacking at the rubber. If you find any bad areas you might as well get out the pry bar and tear up the plywood and the rubber together. I dont know your budget but exterior grade plywood isnt that much $$$ in the grand scheme of things, some even put down OSB which is even less.
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Old 07-06-2009, 08:37 PM   #3
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Re: Best way to pull up rubber mat?

Thanks guys! I think I'll start at the very rear of the bus where the window A/C units have been dripping condensation. I'm positive there's some rust/rot in those areas. Maybe I can chip away at it from that area and pull everything up from there.
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:55 AM   #4
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Re: Best way to pull up rubber mat?

A full-sized crow-bar should be able to get under the edge of the rubber; when you get to a screw, pop the heads clean off. Then be sure to cut off the protruding screw remains with an angle grinder.
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Old 10-15-2009, 04:03 PM   #5
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Re: Best way to pull up rubber mat?

On my 97 Thomas, the isle and driver side matt peeled up rather easily. The other side was glued down something fierce. I cut the chisel blade (about 5Ē wide) off a chisel and welded it to a pneumatic chisel and that worked really well for peeling it up.
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Old 10-15-2009, 06:58 PM   #6
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Re: Best way to pull up rubber mat?

I got mine started and just ripped. A long ice chipper is really helpful in the process. I did cut the metal strip with the grinder midway between the screws and folded it up and pulled it over the first screw or two. That's all it took and the rest came pretty easily. Jam that grinder in there. The smell of burning rubber is terrible, but it will make life a lot easier.
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:35 PM   #7
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Re: Best way to pull up rubber mat?

Thanks guys for all the replies. Guess I should have chimed in and said I actually finished pulling up the floor a while ago. For those who may want yet another odd tool to use when prying up your rubber floor, I found a claw hammer and a short handled garden hoe worked well. What one didn't get under, the other could. There's pictures on my gallery page. Guess the main thing is to have a tool with a flat edge that can be wedged under the mat where it's glued to the flooring.

I really need to get back out and work on BOB some more!
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