How to Remove a Tile Fireplace

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Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver

  • Utility knife

  • Flashlight

  • Pry bar

  • Spackle

  • Trowel

An updated fireplace surround upgrades an entire living room.

Your fireplace is expected to be one of the cozy spots in your home; a perfect spot to curl up and read a good book late at night. Depending on the style of the tile, a fireplace covered with ceramic tiles can be a lovely addition to your home, or an eyesore. Perhaps you would prefer a wooden mantel and surround, or you'd like to cover the entire fireplace wall in stone. Removing a tile fireplace surround provides you with a blank slate to upgrade your fireplace wall any way you like.


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Step 1

Place the tip of a flat-head screwdriver over a portion of the tile's grout. Tap lightly on the screwdriver's handle with a rubber mallet. The grout will crack. Continue hammering until you break all the way through the grout.

Step 2

Move the tip of the screwdriver over 1/4 inch. Angle the screwdriver toward the first crack and continue hammering, removing small sections of grout.

Step 3

Continue working on the grout in this way until you have removed it all.


Step 4

Slide a putty knife under a tile and move it back and forth to break the bond between the adhesive and the tile. Slip a pry bar behind the tile and apply gentle pressure to pull the tile from the wall.

Step 5

Repeat this process for all the tiles.

Step 6

Use a metal scraper to remove all the adhesive stuck to the wall.

Step 7

Sand the wall with medium-grit sandpaper until it's smooth and free of residue.


Step 8

Scoop up a couple of tablespoons of spackle with a putty knife and spread it onto a trowel. Smooth the spackle onto any damaged portion of the fireplace wall with the trowel. Let the spackle dry.

Step 9

Sand the area lightly with fine-grit sandpaper to smooth the spackle and create a smooth, flat wall surface.