The Step-by-Step Guide to Bathroom Demolition Before Remodeling


Demolition of the old bathroom is integral to any remodeling process. You need a strategy. In most cases, a sledgehammer is unnecessary during the demolition phase. Patience and forethought are needed.

This document serves as a demolition planning guide.

Step 1:

Away with the mirror, and If you have a frameless mirror, I suggest taping it in the shape of an “X” to prevent it from breaking.
· Put a piece of tape through the middle of the “X” vertically and horizontally.
Scribing between the wall and the mirror with a razor blade will help dislodge paint, glue, etc.
After you’ve slashed the mirror on all four sides, you can break it gently and toss it in the trash.
· Get rid of wall-mounted items like towel racks, paper towel holders, bookcases, and anything else.

Step 2:

Take off the top of the vanity and turn off the water supply. Make sure you know exactly where the home’s main water shutoff is located, just in case. Before removing the sink’s water supply lines, double-check the shutoff valves. Turn on the hot and cold water in the sink to allow the water pipes to drain. The entire house’s water supply must be turned off if the vanity sink has no shutoff valve. Turn on a few taps and ensure the water doesn’t leak. Take out the plumbing. Cut the copper pipe to the proper length to install a compression shutdown valve. I recommend seeing an expert, such as a professional plumber, if you are at a loss. Always exercise extreme caution around water.
Pull the plug on the sink’s drain.
Remove the vanity top of the vanity by cutting the adhesive with a razor blade and disposing of it in the trash or storing it safely if you plan to reuse it.

Step 3:

Take off the cabinet or vanity and unscrew it from the wall. Even if you plan to keep using the current vanity, you should eliminate it. This will make the floor tile look more complete, professional, and easier to install.
Carefully cut the vanity back open to allow it to slip over the shutoff valves or remove the water shutoff valves if added after the vanity. If you elect to disable the valves, you’ll also need to turn off the main water supply. Before turning the water back on, be sure the shutoff valves have been replaced, or the lines have been capped.
· Take out the bathroom’s baseboards.
· If you won’t reuse the vanity, dismantle it and toss the pieces in the trash.

Step 4:

Get rid of the loo.
Close the water supply valve, or install a shutoff valve as described in Step 3 if the toilet doesn’t have one.
After turning off the water supply, flush the toilets multiple times to remove any remaining water.
A wet shop vacuum or a sponge can eliminate the last bit of moisture.
Take out the bolts and washers from the toilet’s base.
The commode should be removed easily, and the wax ring should be exposed.
Take off the old wax ring using a putty knife. Stuff the hole with a rag to stop sewage gas from entering your home.
Put the toilet in the trash if it won’t be used again, or put it somewhere safe.

Step 5:

The bathtub or shower surround needs to be taken out.
Remove the tub/shower faucet trim, then cut down the corners of the fiberglass shower surround using a reciprocating saw to remove it. Make sure to avoid cutting into the back wall by using a short blade. Keep in mind that the wall behind the shower may conceal dangers.
With a sharp razor blade, cut through the drywall at the top of the tile and along the sides of the tile if you have a tiled shower surround. You must pass the razor blade over the drywall multiple times to make a clean cut through the drywall. Remove the tile and backer boards from the wall by prying them up. The backing board is screwed into place. After the backboard is taken down, these screws can be taken out.
To reduce the amount of debris and visits to the dumpster, it is best to remove the tile and backer board in large portions. Only the tile and the backing board behind it should be removed. What you take away now will need to be returned in the future.
To take out the tub, you must first disconnect the drain. If the tub is made of cast iron, you should use a two-wheeled cart to get it to the garbage can. A cast-iron bathtub can be dismantled into manageable pieces in the home, but doing so will create a mess. If the tub is made of fiberglass, it should be chopped into manageable bits before being removed from the home and disposed of in a dumpster. A blanket can help contain small pieces and keep the mess to a minimum as the tub is broken apart.

Step 6:

Take up the old flooring; how simple this is will depend on how long ago the bathroom was built and how the flooring was installed. Some of the most frequent patterns for laying tile floors are seen here.
A cement board can be used to install the tile. The cement board is usually installed over the thin set and then screwed to the subfloor.

That’s up to five distinct layers of flooring!

The subfloor will be placed under the tiles and cement board. Get rid of the rest of the clutter.

A thin set, around an inch, is used to adhere the tile to the subfloor.

You may potentially have three levels with this:

The subfloor will be left in place under the tile and thin set. Get rid of the rest of the clutter.

You never know what you’ll find in a restroom until you start tearing up the floor. Regardless, getting down through the tile and tile backer to the subfloor is no simple process. Removing the tile and replacing it with the existing mortar is possible. If this option is chosen, the current tiled floor height may be increased by 3/8 inch to 3/4 inch. I don’t think this is a good idea because you can’t check the current subfloor for damage. The gap between the tiled and next floors can be bridged using several different thresholds. For advice on a suitable threshold, visit a flooring retailer in your area. Don’t forget that the toilet flange must be level with the subfloor or the completed floor. The flange may need to be replaced if it protrudes too far above or below the finished floor. This will increase your costs.

Your toilet should now be vacant, save for the light. We’ll retain it for now and replace it when we get a new one. The time has come to begin reassembling the lavatory.

I want to stress the need to double-check your work to ensure accuracy. Step back and get help from a qualified expert if you ever feel uneasy. Be sure you abide by all applicable state and federal regulations.

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