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Tips on How to Remove Floor Tile

Tips on How to Remove Floor Tile

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January 8, 2008

While there are many advantages to having tile floors, many people at some point decide to replace.  It could be that the tiles have gotten worn, or you want a different look in the room.  Whatever the reason may be, removing tile flooring to install carpet or different tile is a useful home improvement skill to have.  This process really isn't very difficult, however you may need to invest in or borrow tools you don't currently have, and safety practices are important.  Depending on your goal, how to remove floor tile will depend on if you want to save the tile or not.  Here are a couple of suggestions and list of items you will need to complete the job successfully and safely.

Let's start with a few items you will need to make this job simpler.  As you are sure to be spending quite a bit of time on your hands and knees to get it done, starting with knee pads and gloves is a good idea.  Don't forget to get yourself a good pair of safety goggles as well.  Especially if you are planning to do this job by hand, flying tile pieces could definitely be a concern.  Other tools to have on hand include a rotary tool, pry bar, and hammer. 

How to Remove Floor Tile

You may be in a situation where you love the tile you are planning to remove and would like to use it somewhere else in the house.  In that case, removing the tile flooring will mean keeping each individual tile in tact.  For that type of job, you will definitely need the rotary tool to remove the grout from in between each tile.  With your pry bar, gently remove each tile from its place.  Make sure you have a box or container handy to prevent breakage.  As much as you may want to keep the tile intact, remember that the age of the tile and how it was installed originally may be factors in successfully saving the pieces.  An experienced tile contractor can also be helpful in this process for consultation or if you would simply rather trust your tile project to a professional.

If you aren't concerned about keeping the tile, how to remove floor tile is much simpler.  With protective eyewear, simply smash it with a sledgehammer and remove the particles.  It's likely you will find dents and gouges in the sub floor.  Before you install your new flooring, use a floor leveling compound to smooth away any rough edges. 

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