How Much Does It Cost to Remove a Tile Floor?

by Team HomeServe
Worker remove, demolish old tiles in a bathroom with hammer and chisel

You can’t install new flooring without getting rid of what’s already there. So, if you’re thinking about laying down new tile, hardwood or vinyl, you may have to take up the tile.

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You won’t want to forget to factor this price into your project budget. Here's how the costs shake out.

Tile Floor Removal Cost

On average, you can expect to pay between $1.50 to $4.15 (CAD 1.90 to CAD 5.25) per square foot of ceramic tile for tile removal. Let's say your bathroom is 100 square feet. You can then expect to pay between $150 and $415 (CAD 190 and CAD 525) for the tile removal process.

Factors That Affect the Cost

  • Location: Where you live matters. In places where the cost of living is higher, supplies may cost more, and a flooring company may charge more to remove the floor.
  • Floor size: Most contractors charge per square foot of tile that needs to be removed.

Compare contractor quotes for tile removal based on skill as well as price. A contractor may charge less, but that doesn't necessarily mean you'll be satisfied with the results.  If you’re having new flooring installed by a contractor, tile removal may be part of that quote.

Preparation of repair the bathroom  Removing old tiles

What Happens During Tile Removal

First, the contractor will prepare the space to contain the mess. They may place a plastic divider in between where they're removing tiles and other rooms. Weakened or damaged floor tiles are likely to be removed first. Flooring professionals may use a specialized scraper. Otherwise, they typically begin at the grout line using a chisel and scrape until they have removed all the tiles.

The cost to remove a tile floor takes into account what a time-consuming process it is. The mess and time it takes to finish this process make removing tile flooring quite an extensive and difficult job. Sometimes, the contractor may use heavy-duty equipment, such as a jackhammer, to remove tile flooring.

When the tile has been removed, it exposes the subfloor beneath. Occasionally, a contractor may find water damage here, and if that's the case, it will need to be fixed before the new tile or other flooring is installed. Once the removal process is complete, a plan for the new floor installation can be made.

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Why Hiring a Professional Can Be Beneficial

Of course, you could do this process yourself. To save money on project costs, you could remove the tiles prior to a new installation.

It may seem like hiring a professional isn't a logical solution when it's possible to do it yourself. Though professional removal might be more expensive, it can be a smart move if you want to ensure the job is done well.

Professional Care and Attention

A pro knows how to keep the dust and debris from the project contained. You won't have to worry so much about the mess spreading to other rooms of your home or having to clean up afterward. The company you hire should dispose of all the waste, which is convenient for you; you don’t have to worry about getting rid of all those old tiles.

Also, removing tile can sometimes affect the subfloor below. If you are doing the removal yourself, it can be difficult not to damage the subfloor. If you opt to call in a professional, they will use strategies to minimize the damage to the subfloor during the removal process. Trim and walls are also at risk of damage during the process of tile floor removal. Hiring a professional may reduce the number of dings or scrapes here, too.

Clear Timeframes

When the contractor you hire provides you with a floor tile removal estimate, they will also let you know how long they expect the project to take. Even though the cost to remove a tile floor is higher when you hire someone, the process is likely to be completed within a specific time frame, and the company can address any hurdles that arise along the way to keep the project on schedule.