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HIP Home > Projects > Countertops > Backsplash >

How to Remove Kitchen Backsplash Tiles

It is fairly easy to remove kitchen backsplash tiles from drywall because, over time, the adhesive used to lay the tiles weakens, allowing you to pry the tiles out. However, kitchen backsplash tiles are bound with a cement-strength adhesive, so prying them out may require some elbow grease. You may also have pieces of drywall coming off with the tiles. If you are not careful, the entire wall can get damaged while you are removing your tiles.

If you want to preserve your wall, take the following steps to prevent major damage. However, you should be ready to do some patch up work on the drywall after the kitchen backsplash tiles are removed.

  1. Use a grout remover to file out the grout around each tile. Try to go in as deep as possible.
  2. Use a ceramic chisel and hammer to crack the center of the tiles. Then use the chisel to chip out the pieces and clear access to the edges of the other tiles.
  3. Insert a small, flat crowbar between the tiles and the wall. Create a gap between the tiles and drywall by hammering crowbar in this space. If you are lucky, the tile will come off easily and without any damage. Keep doing this until you remove all the kitchen backsplash tiles.

If the drywall escapes unharmed, your job is done. However, if the drywall is damaged, or if there is any water damage, you need to patch the surface.

To repair drywall, use a spackling knife to scrape away the old adhesive. Next, use the knife to mix a little Plaster of Paris into the joint compound. Now patch up the area and smooth any minor indentations or holes. Once it's dry, you've got a blank canvas ready for your next project.


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