How to Remove Porcelain Tile From Your Floor


Porcelain tile floors are known for their durability and long-lasting performance. This is great for floors that are meant to be down for years, but can be a hindrance when the goal is to remove them. Since porcelain tiles are most frequently installed with a thin layer of adhesive, the most effective way to remove the tiles from the floor is to pull them up. Only a few tiles may need to be broken during the process.

Things You'll Need

  • Hammer
  • Chisel
  • Long-handled pry bar
  • Long-handled floor scraper
  • Place the point of the chisel in the center of a tile near the middle of the floor. Hit the chisel hard with the hammer, driving the chisel into the porcelain tile. This will break the tile and its bond on the floor. Remove any loose pieces, and continue to chisel loose the rest of the tile, until you have a clear section down to the substrate.

  • Stand facing the tiles that surround the cleared area and place the edge of the pry bar beneath one of the surrounding tiles and its adhesive. Push the pry bar under the tile and apply pressure to the handle to pull the tile and adhesive up from the floor.

  • Pull up tiles with the pry bar. Use the hammer and chisel to break any tiles that do not yield to the pressure from the pry bar easily.

  • Take up any remaining adhesive from the substrate when the porcelain tiles have been removed, using a floor scraper. Stand with the floor scraper angled out in front of you, and push it in short strokes beneath the adhesive to remove it.

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  • Photo Credit Tiled floor image by Simon Amberly from
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