As covered in Choosing Flooring, there are floating floors, glued floors, and fastened floors. You’ll learn how to install each in the coming sections, as appropriate. Meantime, you need to remove old flooring that uses one of these three fastening methods.
A floating floor is one with interlocking components, such as many laminate wood flooring materials. The materials lay on the subfloor with no (or very little) attachment to the subfloor. Therefore, removal is relatively easy. Checking edges, figure out which direction the flooring material was installed and uninstall it in the opposite direction. That is, if you determine that the flooring was interlocked from left to right, then begin on the right and lift each piece to remove it. If you’re careful, you may be able to save some of the materials for a future flooring project, depending on wear damage.