How to Remove the Old Bathroom Tiles

Reomove old tiles

If you are planning to renovate your bathroom, you may have to remove the old tiles to get the best results. Side note, for bathroom tile ideas here is a great site to checkout,

Though there are professionals who can help you out, it is recommended to learn how to do it yourself to save on time and money.

Here is a simple guide on how to remove old tiles. Note, in this article, the focus is on ceramic floor tiles, as they are the most commonly used tiles in the world today.

  1. Clear the Floor Area

Before you start removing the old tiles from the wall, you need to first clear the floor area to reduce the risk of accidents.

Remove the toilet, disconnect all water pipes and drains, as well as pedestal sinks if any.

Doing this will give you easy access to all the tiles and simplify the process so you will have ample space to work on each tile.

  1. Wear Safety Gear

You will need to buy an apron if you do not have one in the house to cover your body. Use safety glasses to protect your eyes from dust and flying ceramic tile particles. Wear leather gloves to protect your hands from cuts. Broken pieces of ceramic tiles can easily slice your skin.

  1. Know What Lies Beneath the Tile

Here, you will need to do some detective work to find out what lies under the tiles before proceeding to avoid any major damage (pipes) or injuries (electrical wires).

One way of doing this is by using a sturdy chisel and sledge to break some of the tiles preferably those that are in the middle of the floor. Then looking beneath to access the situation.

  1. How to remove old tiles that are stuck on plywood

To remove tile stuck on plywood, you will need to remove a row of the tile across the room using the chisel. Then remove an additional another row between the walls. The rows will intersect in the middle of the bathroom thereby exposing the underlying plywood.

Proceed to use a saw to make a deep cut into the underlying material. The ideal saw should have a 12-inch long blade and it should be sharp to make a clean cut. After making this cut, use a crowbar to rip up the entire plywood backing.

  1. How to remove old tiles that are stuck on Cement Backerboard

Removing tiles that are stuck on cement backerboard is as complicated as the tiles stuck on plywood.

If you’re removing floor tile, be careful of the plywood subflooring. It is likely to be damaged if the backerboard is strongly glued down.

You can use a circular saw with a grit masonry-cutting blade to cut through the backerboard. Set the circular saw to the height of the backerboard so you don’t hit the subfloor.

It is recommended to work on a small section at a time to save on time and prevent breaking the tiles unnecessarily.


Indeed, learning how to remove old tiles can help you save money and ensure that you complete the renovation project on time. If you have never done this kind of task before, take baby steps to reduce the risk of injury.

Alternatively, hire an expert to do it for you if you have a busy schedule or do not have the required tools.