How to Remove Tile From Concrete Floor or Wall?

Home renovation is a draining assignment, especially when it has to be done without any trained assistance and guidance. It can be mentally challenging as it can be chaotic, messy and leads to more complex tasks surpassing the budget. Without any professional knowledge, there is a chance of damaging property as different tools and equipment are used. It includes a change of space, altering the entire arrangement and features of the house, and completely transforming the layout and design. Similarly, a bathroom redo will be costly as well as time-consuming. The trick is to upgrade features that complement your styles and routines, adding features that render convenience.

Make sure to incorporate the following before starting with the project.

  • Lump hammer
  • Chisel
  • Vacuum
  • Trowel
  • Glasses
  • A mask
  • Knee pads

If you prepare all tools, you can start to remove tiles.


How to Remove Tile From Wall?

To remove tiles from the wall, you need to do the following steps:

  • Turn off the water supply in the bathroom
  • Shut off the electrical power from the bathroom
  • Start from the upper corner to remove tiles (up to down) using a hammer and chisel.

Please see the video on how to remove tiles from the wall:


How to Remove Tile From Concrete Floor?

To remove tile from concrete floor, prepare tools and do these steps:

  • Work the chisel between the tiles and the concrete, hammering them up with a 2-lb
  • Smooth the old concrete using spread thin-set mortar over the concrete
  • Chisel and scrape the adhesive off the concrete
  • Place the chisel against the bottom edge of adjacent tiles, apply pressure with your hammer, and the tiles should pop up easily.

Bathroom renovation and remodeling include removing the tiles, and it can be an overwhelming project. A multitude of challenges is unleashed if a single layer of tile is removed or scraped from the floor, therefore, making it overpriced and time-consuming. If you want to remove tiles on your own and without professional skill, expect a plethora of experiments, challenges, work noise, and dust on the way. The tile may be attached through bare cement, plywood, mason board, or even a previous under-layered floor, depending on the construction process. Whatever formulates the tile floor’s underlayer, removing them is a laborious process in some scenarios, the tile cracks, leaving a break or crack in between. The first step is to analyze the tile’s general condition and locate the principal issue behind the stains and cracks of ceramic tiles. Next, try hiring a ceramic tile contractor to remove the old tile and install a new one covering the floor walls and countertops.

The cost of removing the tiles depends on the size of the bathroom and the amount of expertise it requires. Along with expenses, you also need to take care of the tools required to initiate the project. Begin by removing the fixtures and empty the room for an easy tile of removal. Turn off the water supply before taking out the sink and toilet seat. Be careful when taking out the seat, remove the bolt, and rock the fixture to break the wax seal. Locate a starting point and chose a sensible way to begin with, especially if you have a vanity, countertops, or a semi-permanent fixture; otherwise, you will have access to bare edges, acting as a good point for tile removal. If the tile is wall to wall, it is essential to use a hammer or a chisel to break them and create a starting point. After pinpointing the commencement point, start pulling it up and reducing the clutter or mess by accumulating them in the basket. In some bathrooms, tiles are directly attached to the concrete floor, but the mortar or plywood underlayer is typical and usual in most bathrooms. If the underlayer is damaged or needs to be renovated, it should be taken out at that moment. You will notice many debris and mess beneath the layer, which needs to be properly cleaned along with the exposed nails after tile removal to achieve a clean flat surface. Use a broom or a vacuum to remove the small particles and check for bumps, if any.

Tile removing can be an intimidating task, but it can be performed easily after a thorough analysis. A few things need to be considered, such as removing grout and caulk before the tile removal, easily performed with a utility knife. The grout should be removed; however, hot glue would be required for caulk removal as it can be softened with heat. If grout and caulk are taken out without any hassle, the tile removal may be completed without delay. However, professional help would be required if you cannot deal with grout and caulk removal properly. Similarly, once the tiles are uninstalled, the underlayer needs to be scrubbed and prepared. It consists of adhesive and cement, which can be taken out with a unique methylene chloride-based formula. This is a toxic element, and immense caution is required with the presence of a well-ventilated area. Damaged or already cracked tiles are much easier to remove as compared to the fixed ones. However, removing the tile cleanly will also make the surface preparation of the underlayer convenient and less difficult. Removal of countertops is tricky as they are mounted on backer board, plywood or mortar but can be protected with wire mesh. An increased or extra layer of adhesion is present on the counter tiles, making it difficult to remove the fixed tile, so the only practical way for countertop tile removal is through the diamond blade saw.

Removing tile flooring can be a DIY project unless asbestos is involved. In this scenario, the main danger lies in the asbestos removal, not the process of tile scraping. It can be poisonous and can get dangerous when mixed with the air making it hard to breathe. The ideal way to carefully manage the asbestos exclusion is to seal or cover it with epoxy floor paint. It will keep the asbestos fiber less dangerous by keeping them intact. In addition to that, if you are considering a DIY tile removal project, then appropriate kinds of tools are required for that purpose.

Despite doing a DIY project or consulting a professional expert, safety is the principal priority before beginning. Before you start to break the tiles, you will find yourself being attacked by tiny ceramic pieces of porcelain or glass, which can be a safety hazard. Before they start flying away, prepare yourself by wearing safety goggles, masks, and protective gloves. Try protecting the bath, sink, or shower trays before the big pieces of tiles start flying away, damaging the bathroom utilities. Whether made from ceramic, metal, or plastic, they have a chance to get damaged or can receive scratches, so it is essential to cover them up. You can use cardboard to cover up these spaces and for extra protection, or use an old sheet.

Tile removal can be challenging at first, but if you are confident about the results and have assistance available, there is no harm in taking up the DIY project. However, you need to be fully prepared for the mess and time it will take to redo the entire bathroom floor because as soon as you start scraping off a single tile, you have unleashed a time-consuming task.

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Mark Brown

Mark Brown

Mark Brown is a construction engineer from California who has been working as an independent contractor and writer for the past 15 years. From 2022 onwards, Mark has also been contributing author of home repair articles at Read more on Mark Brown's biography page. Contact Mark:

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