Tips on How to Remove a Tile Floor

Learn how to remove a tile floor. 

Removing an entire room of tile can feel daunting. Just removing our backsplash was hard work! Here are some tips to make it easier, plus our favorite tools to make the job go faster. 

ceramic tile removal and clean up

Tips to Remove a Tile Floor

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Supplies Needed

  • Protect your ears and eyes! The rotary hammer is extremely loud and tiles shards fly everywhere!
  • Work smarter, not harder. After failing miserably with a hammer and crowbar, we bought a rotary hammer and it was worth every penny. (They can also be rented.) The chisel bit makes it a very fast and effective way to remove tile.
  • After removing the tile, there will still be mortar stuck to the floor. We used a floor scraper to remove as much as possible. You will need a smooth floor for your new flooring choice.
removing tile with a rotary hammer and chisel bit

Clean Up after Tile Removal

  • The dust was bad at times, so a respirator mask was necessary.
  • Contractor grade garbage bags are necessary to haul out broken tile. We used 2 trash cans, lined with the garbage bags to make it easier. Only fill the bag about 1/4 of the way so that you can actually lift it.
  • For tile removal in a large room, use a flat edged shovel to scoop up the larger chunks of tile. If the pieces are too big, smash them with a hammer. My son had a lot of fun with this part!
  • A broom and a dustpan gets the smaller pieces.
  • Use a ShopVac to get up the tiny particles. Make sure that you have a good filter on it.
  • Despite being able to shut doors, dust still got all over the house. Be prepared for a huge mess.
  • Let the dust settle overnight before you start cleaning the walls.
  • The walls needed to cleaned before painting. My normal method of swiffering them was only pushing around the dirt, so we had to wash them down with wet rags a few times.

Once the tile was removed, we resurfaced the sub-floor with concrete and then stained the concrete!

Be sure to check out the finished sunroom!

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ceramic tile removal and clean up

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