Cleanly Remove Black Slate Tiles Cleanly Remove Black Slate Tiles

What You'll Need
Grout saw
Metal putty knife
Plastic putty knife
Painters tape
Small rubber mallet
Adhesive remover
Utility knife
Clean rags

If your remodeling plans for a bathroom include removing black slate tiles, you will want to salvage them because they are one of the more expensive tiles you can install in a bathroom. If you have no plans to use them again, they can be sold to handymen and other contractors. It is possible to remove black slate tiles safely and cleanly, and the following article will show you how.

Step 1 – Remove the Metal Cap

Black slate tiles can be thicker than other tiles, which will make the tiled wall have a thick edge. Many people will install a metal strip, the same width as the thickness of the tile, to cap the edge. This strip is adhered to the tile using caulk. Slide the utility knife between the strip and the tile and then cut the caulk. Insert the metal putty knife and then pry the strip away from the edge of the tile. Slide the putty knife along the length as you pry.

Step 2 – Grout Removal

The grout is applied between the spaces of the tile. When the grout dries, it is like concrete. In order to remove black slate tiles cleanly, you need to remove the grout. Use the grout saw to begin slicing the grout as close to the edges of the tile as possible. Once the grout is removed, you can start to remove the tiles from wall.

Step 3 – Remove the Black Slate Tiles

Black slate tiles can be very fragile. To protect them, place painter’s tape over each tile to form an “X.” This will help to keep the vibrations down to a minimum so the tiles do not break. Once the tape is applied, you can start removing the tile. Begin at the bare edge of the tiles where you removed the metal strip. Place the blade of the putty knife at a slight angle against the edge of the tile and then gently tap the handle. This will lodge the blade under the tile; keep tapping until most of the blade is under the tile. Pull up on the putty knife to pry the tile from the cement backer board. Repeat for each tile until they are all removed.

Step 4 – Cleaning the Tile

Adhesive will be left on the underside of the tile. This is easily cleaned off the tiles. Apply adhesive remover to a clean rag and then wipe it on the bottom of the black slate tiles. Allow the remover to work for several minutes. Use the plastic putty knife to scrape away the adhesive. For small areas, use the rag with adhesive remover to buff the tiles.

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