Flooring doesn't last forever, and ceramic tile is no exception. Whether it's used in your kitchen, bathroom or elsewhere in your home, you'll eventually need to remove it. Maybe you want to replace it with new tile, or perhaps you want to install laminate or hardwood floors. Regardless, the first step to achieving this is to remove the old tiles.
Unfortunately, removing ceramic floor tiles isn't always easy. Over the course of many years, grout will harden and become difficult to break. While you can always bite the bullet and call a contractor to help, this is still a project that most homeowners can do themselves. So, if you're thinking about removing ceramic floor tile in your home, consider the following tips.
Prepare the Area
The first step to removing ceramic floor tile is to prepare the area. This is done by playing drop cloths over the tiles, thus preventing sharp shards from flying into the air and potentially cutting you or anyone else nearby. Don't just cover one area of the tile. Rather, place the drop clothes over the entire tile flooring to create a safe working environment.
Get Your Equipment Ready
Break It Up
The third step to removing old ceramic floor tile is to break it up with a sledgehammer. Assuming the tiles are covered with drop clothes, you can proceed to hit them with the sledgehammer. The purpose of this is to break up the tiles into many smaller pieces so that you can easily remove them. As you break up the tiles, carefully move them -- while wearing gloves -- into buckets or a wheelbarrow. Once finished, you can transport the broken tiles to a nearby dump.
Finally, go back over the floor and clean up any remaining debris. Even if you smashed the ceramic tile into smaller pieces, there are probably some remnants lingering on the floor. So, use a pry bar or similar tool to finish removing the tile and create a clean area.