Our tastes change over time, just as our homes must face inevitable wear and tear.
Even things we once admired we might decide we want to replace, and this can apply to self-adhesive tiles.
But how do you go about removing them? Here’s our step-by-step guide on how to remove self-adhesive tiles.
Self-adhesive tiles are designed to be easy to fix to a surface, but also to remain firmly in place once you've applied them.
Therefore, removing them requires that you have the right tools for the job. To prepare for removing self-adhesive tiles, you will need:
- Hair dryer or heat gun
- Long-handled scraper tool
- Small crowbar
Remove any materials on or in front of the tiles.
Heat the Tiles Up
The warmer the self-adhesive tiles are, the easier it'll be to remove them. The heat from your hair dryer will melt the adhesive backing on the tiles that fixes them to the surface.
We recommend putting a cloth or towel over the tiles first to avoid melting their surface with the heat you’re applying.
Hold the hair dryer a couple of centimetres above the tile surface and apply heat continuously. Around 30 seconds should do it.
If you’re worried about the hairdryer overheating and cutting out, then a good alternative is to use a heat gun.
Pry Up a Tile Corner
Using the long-handled scraper tool, get its blade under the corner of a tile and carefully lever the tile surface upwards.
Once you’ve got some space to work in, use the small crowbar to get further under the tile, applying the hammer where necessary.
Pry enough of the tile loose that you can get a grip on it with both hands.
Wear gloves to protect your hands and to give you a firmer purchase on the tile, where you've loosened the edge.
Tug on the Tile
Tug the loosened tile carefully towards you. You want to avoid breaking the tile sheet and leaving part of it stuck to the surface. This will make it harder to remove.
Pull at roughly a 30° angle, applying enough pressure for the tile to peel away.
Once the sheet of tiles has come away from the surface, you'll then be left with an adhesive residue.
Repeat as Necessary
Depending on the overall coverage of self-adhesive tiles, you’ll need to repeat the removal process until your surface is clear.
What you’ll have left is an adhesive residue, where the tiles have been.
Acetone is excellent for removing the residue left behind when removing self-adhesive tiles.
Like with any other chemical, please take the appropriate safety precautions where necessary. Ensure the area you’re working in is well ventilated, and you’re wearing gloves and a mask.
Apply the acetone to the adhesive area. We recommend working in small sections.
Cotton pads or an unused toothbrush can help to scrub at troublesome areas. Wipe away gently with a cloth.
This will leave your surface non-tacky and ready for you to install your fresh tiles.
Be Patient and Methodical
You shouldn’t rush the process of removing self-adhesive tiles if you want to get the best results.
This can be a slow job, but it’s important to be both patient and methodical in carrying it out.