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Inexpensive way to remove and replace tile?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Kwesi, Jun 26, 2012.

  1. So we had our basement tiled a few years back and one of the tiles started flaking. For whatever reason, my dad thought that it would be a good idea to spray-paint the flaking tiles :rollno:. So, while the plan was to replace them eventually, he kind of accelerated things, lol.

    So how would I could about replacing tile like this? Could I just break the individual tiles? What kind of adhesive do I need? Do I need to remove the old adhesive?

  2. tastybasslines

    tastybasslines Banned

    May 9, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    Seems like more trouble than its worth for that...if it doesn't look too weird, just put a small rug over it.

    Or your local hardware store must have some sort of product for repairs like this.
  3. KCLRbass


    Sep 5, 2011
    If you're on a budget, sealing tiles instead of replacing them can be a good way to extend their life. If you redo the grout as well, it can really visibly freshen up the situation. It's time intensive, but doable.

    If you really need to re-tile the whole thing, I would personally hire a professional. It's a job that could be easily botched by an amateur like me.
  4. break the tile up manually - crowbars, and whatever other demo tools

    remove the old adhesive - use a big scraper

    get the tile and adhesive together at home depot, or wherever you choose to get it from. you may need grout, thinset, and a few other things.

    not a complicated process, but you're gonna work your pretty little tail off :p
  5. RosieB


    Feb 10, 2009
    Yeah, laying tile isn't hard, just labor intensive and hard on the knees. Your worst part will be removing the existing tile. How big an area? A wet saw is a big plus, but if you don't have many cuts, Lowes or Home Depot will sometimes make the cuts for you. Or mark all your cuts first then rent a saw for an hour - just long enough to cut. Good luck!
  6. It looks awful. Like, really bad. I'll post a picture of it later.

    The original plan was to seal it but the decided to take matters into his own hands, lol. It's only 5 or 6 tiles that are jacked up. We have the tiles (leftovers) but need the stuff that actually sticks it to the floor. It doesn't look like there's any grout between each tile though which looks nice but makes getting the tiles out a little more difficult.

    Sounds good, man. I'll probably get to work on it tonight.
  7. Ah great advice! Listen to Rosie
  8. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    Beat it with a sledge

    and hope there isn't 4 or 5 more layer under it!
  9. Simo98


    Jun 18, 2009
    QLD, Australia
    How many tiles are there that need replacing?

    Gonna state the obvious here, but before you go pulling it up, make sure you can get one that matches in to replace it with. Did you keep any spares from the original tiling?
  10. Reading is fundamental. :D
  11. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    Fixed it for you.
  12. So about 5 tiles need replacing. I went at the really bad one in the center (the tiles that need to be replace form a "+" sign) for a few minutes with a crowbar with no luck. I'm chipping at it (got to the concrete) but I think the adhesive underneath is too strong. Would a heat gun help to loosen it up? Worse come to worse, I'll call a pro but I feel like I can handle this.
  13. RosieB


    Feb 10, 2009
    Google it. Or ask at the hardware store. There should be some kind of solvent that would work on it. Just be careful near the good tiles (duh). I don't have my tub of adhesive anymore or I'd read the side and see if it says anything.

    Edit: just occurred to me that my tiling book is sitting on the bookshelf next to me. It just says use a chisel and a hammer. No mention of solvents.
  14. Yeah, after bit a of googling this just might be the way to go. I thought about the wet saw but I felt like it might be a bit much for only a handful of tiles. I buddy of mine is bringing his heat gun tomorrow and were gonna wreck some floor :D.
  15. I got some adhesive solvent just in case but, yeah, it doesn't look like i'll need it. The bits of tile that are coming up seem to bring whatever adhesive that was there with them.
  16. get yourself one of those little hand held 4 inch grinders with a masonary blade on it, go to your home depot shop....then be carefull, just cut through it not through the floor or wall on the other side...and cut the tile across in pieces then chip it out with a screw driver....but before you even do it make sure you have a spare to match it
  17. 1SHOT1HIT


    Feb 17, 2012
    Definitely not a difficult thing to do, my mom has replaced several tiles on her own because she's too impatient to wait for one of my brothers or myself to help.

    The difficulty to removal of the old really boils down to the sub floor (the floor under the tile) and its material.
    If its concrete great. This is very easy.
    If its typical Tongue & Groove OSB plywood still easy but depending on the amount of adhesive used on the original installation it can get messy, if they over did it you'll likely be pulling some sections of wood up as well. Nothing major but definitely some. Obviously the least amount of sub floor damaged the better for obvious reasons.
    If its ceramic tile laid over other ceramic tile use caution, you don't want to crack the tile underneath unless your planning on removing that tile too and the odds that the tile your replacing and the tile under it are perfectly lined up are like 1 in a million, so plan on fixing more than just the one tile should this be the case.

    If its vinyl flooring (linoleum) or laminate flooring with a 1/4" underlayment Luan floor under it, again just use caution. You don't want to rip up anything thats going to leave you with an uneven surface to reattach the new tile.

    A heat gun may help things but honestly I don't see why it should come to that. Maybe give it a shot who knows maybe they used some really strong glue and it's needed to soften it up.

    A tool that can be a saving grace for a job like this is actually a very simple tool.
    Get yourself a pry-bar. Similar to a crow bar but flat and much smaller and is more of a hand tool.
    It's shape allows you perfect angle for exactly what you need, it's strength is what will help you to pry the old tile out.
    Just keep in mind that if you pry against the neighboring tile for leverage you could very easily crack it also. Use a small block of wood for leverage.

    Basically if I had to replace an old cracked tile and could only pick one tool s Pry-Bar would be it.

    You definitely should not need any saw especially a wet saw and I'm not sure if we're thinking about the same thing because a wet saw for tile work is for cutting uninstalled tile not tile that's already installed.
    It's a power tool like a little mini table saw that uses water to keep the blade cool and the tile cool as well as keeping the tile from cracking while it's being cut.

    And lastly, most ceramic tile should easily just be able to be cracked with a hammer and removed in like 2-3 small pieces.
    Don't over do it.
  18. placedesjardins


    May 7, 2012
    I removed the linoleum floor in my kitchen. After removing the top layer, it had another linoleum layer under it. When I removed the top two layers, there was another one under it. It was the original with adhesive holding it down like crazy. That was the hardest layer. Then, I finally got to the subfloor.
  19. Progress report:

    This is after I had gone at it few minutes with the wrecking bar. Right after I took these pics, I tried using the bar as a wedge between the tile and the concrete and it was working wonders but I need to put sheets up around the area so I don't end up with bits of tile all over my basement. Might not need that heat gun after all.

    Here you can see the flaking and the spray-paint job dad did. It was flaking like crazy even before I started whacking it. We're not really sure why.


    And here's a closer shot.

  20. Never let your Dad touch another can of spray paint ever again.


    But yeah, like what I think 1SHOT said, a nice flat-bar is your best friend with this job. The first is gonna be a itch but after that they should pop out fairly easy.

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