How to Remove Tile Adhesive from Floor? DIY Floor Glue Removal Methods!

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Tile adhesive is a glue that bonds the tile to its surface. There are different varieties of tile adhesives.

You can decide on the appropriate tile adhesive depending on the purpose, tile material, and surface. Choosing an appropriate adhesive will aid in the strong bonding of the tiles.

Imagine that the tiles in the interior of your living room are not appropriately aligned. Removing the tiles and retiling will make the place astonishing.

Although this is possible, eliminating tile adhesive can be an overwhelming task.

Thankfully, a few methods exist to remove the tile adhesive from your floor. Using the proper tile adhesive remover will make the process easier. You can also use the rigid scraper blade or other DIY hacks to remove the adhesive.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to removing tile adhesive from tile surfaces!

Removing Tile Adhesive from the Floor

Have you tiled the surface using ceramic or similar tiles? The following methods will be helpful to remove the adhesive.

According to your convenience, you can try one of the techniques.

Method 1: Using a Hair Dryer

This method will be an excellent option for small projects like removing a broken tile. Also, this will be mainly effective for organic tile adhesive.

Essential Tools:


Focus on one tile at a time. To soften beneath the surface, use the hair dryer.

The heated air from the blow dryer will eventually make the surface soft after a few minutes.

Now pry up the corner of the tile and slowly insert the scraper underneath. After loosening, you can remove the tile from the surface.

To remove the tile adhesive from the floor, you can blow dry to soften it and then scrape it off.

Method 2: Using Adhesive Remover

This method can remove non-water-soluble tile adhesive from the surface.

Safety Precautions:

Ensure that the place where you are working is well-ventilated. Further, wearing gloves and a mask will prevent you from breathing or touching the adhesive.


First, you must remove the tile from the surface. Then you can remove the adhesive on the subfloor using the tile adhesive.

Test whether the method works well by applying the glue remover to a small portion of the surface. If yes, apply it to the whole surface and let it stay for around 15 minutes.

This product will help soften the tile adhesive. Next, using a scraper, you can scrape off the tile adhesive.

Note: You can reapply the remover in the required places if you find any traces of glue on the floor. Allow it to soften, and then scrape it off.

Method 3: Make Use of Hot Water

This method will be a great option if you want to remove mastic adhesive from a smaller area.

Essential Items:

  • Hot water (fill a large pot).
  • Handheld scraper


Boil a pot of water and pour it on the surface to soften the tile adhesive underneath the surface. Let the water and the heat soften the adhesive. Then you can use the handheld scraper to remove the glue.

Note: This option is unsuitable for large projects, as handling hot water can be dangerous.

How to Remove Tile Adhesive from a Concrete Floor

The following DIY method will be suitable for removing the tile adhesive from a concrete floor. Also, this is a cost-effective option. 

Tile Adhesive Removal using Hydrated Vinegar Solution

Essential Items:

  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • Sponge
  • Putty knife


In a container, mix vinegar and water in a 1:1 ratio.

Dip the sponge in this solution and apply it to the tile adhesive. After several minutes, vinegar and water will start to dissolve the glue. You can remove the softened glue from the concrete floor using the putty.

Remove Tile Adhesive From a Wall

Imagine you are removing broken tiles from the bathroom.

When removing the adhesive from the wall, you can use the hairdryer to soften the adhesive, as mentioned above.

Following are two other alternative ways to remove the tile adhesive from the wall.

Method 1: Using Hot Water

This method will be excellent for mastic tile adhesives.

Essential Items:

  • Hot water
  • Scraper
  • Soft cloth


Use a pair of gloves to avoid the heat. Let the cloth soak in hot water for some time.

Then get the cloth and wet the tile adhesive. The heat and liquid will eventually soften the adhesive. Now you can scrape the adhesive and remove it from the wall. If necessary, repeat the procedure.

Method 2: Using a Wallpaper Steamer

Essential Items:

  • Wallpaper steamer
  • Scraper


Similar to using the hair dryer, you can use the steamer to heat the surface.

Gradually, the adhesive starts softening. When you realize the glue has softened, you can scrape it off.

Steaming for an extended period of time is not advised.

How to Remove Floor Tile Adhesive from Wood

When removing tile adhesive from a wooden floor, you can follow one of the methods below.

Method 1: Using Distilled Water to Remove Tile Adhesive

Essential Items:

  • Distilled Water
  • Putty knife or sandpaper
  • Sponge
  • Hardwood cleaner


Pour the distilled water on the wooden surface and dampen the glue. Once the glue loosens, remove it using sandpaper or a putty knife.

Spray some hardwood cleaner and remove the residue using a sponge.

Note: You can also use the hydrated vinegar solution on the wooden surface to dampen the glue.

Method 2: Use Acetone to Remove Wooden Floor Glue

You can use acetone when removing small glue patches from wooden surfaces.

Essential Items:

  • Nail polish remover
  • Cotton swab
  • Brush


Douse the cotton in the nail polish and apply it to the patches of tile glue adhesive. Sprinkle water to prevent acetone from evaporating faster. After 15 minutes, you can remove the floor glue using the brush.

Method 3: Using Goo Gone

Goo gone tile adhesive remover is a chemical reagent suitable for removing floor glue from wood and many other surfaces.

Essential Items:

  • Goo Gone tile adhesive remover
  • Brush/ scraper


Apply Goo Gone to the surface and leave it for about five minutes. Then remove the tile adhesive using the brush. Repeat the process if necessary.

Finally, you can clean the surface using soap and water.

Remove Tile Adhesive from Tiles

Sometimes you might have plans to reuse the removed tiles.

On such occasions, remove the tile adhesive from the tiles so you can obtain a nice finish when you reuse them.

The hack to remove tile adhesive from the tile is below.


First, carefully remove the tiles from the surface. Since you will be reusing the tiles, ensure you don’t scratch or break them.

Next, submerge the tile in a basin of hot water. Let it soak for a few minutes. Once the glue has softened, you can scrape off the adhesive.

Allow the tiles to dry well before you use them again.

Removing Tile Adhesive Using a Rigid Scraper Blade

Here’s another method for removing tile adhesive with a multi-tool. This is one of the best options, saving time and effort.

Remove the tile from the surface using a chisel and hammer. Then fix the rigid scraper blade to the multi-tool and remove the adhesive using light pressure.

Once completed, you can clean the surface by brushing away the dust.

If you notice patches of remaining tile adhesive, you can use the tool again in the necessary places.

Bottom Line

Tile adhesive performs well in strongly bonding the tiles to the surface. Therefore, removing the cured adhesive will be hectic but possible.

In this blog, there are several tips that you can use to remove the tile adhesive from different surfaces.

Depending on the type of adhesive and the surface, you can select an appropriate method to remove the floor glue.

Ensure to wear your safety gear before trying the hacks!

For more DIY Hacks you can check our blog on how to stop your garage smelling musty or moldy.


What Is the Easiest Way to Remove Tile Adhesive?

The easiest way is to use Goo Gone or similar chemical reagents.

Anyway, alternative methods of removing floor glue are also effective.

What is the Fastest Way to Remove Mastic Adhesive?

When removing mastic glue, you can use hot water.

Pouring hot or boiled water will dampen the glue and loosen it up faster.

What is the Best Tool to Remove Floor Glue on a Large Surface?

When dealing with a large surface, using the rigid scraper blade to remove floor glue is better.

Is Tile Adhesive Simple to Remove?

Yes, following the simple procedures will help to remove most tile adhesive easily. Whereas, working on complex adhesives might be overwhelming.

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About Tristan Perry

Tristan is an avid DIYer, with a range of projects under his belt including a kitchen refit, various plumbing jobs, building walls, mixing concrete, tiling, laying laminate, some electrical work and more.

As long as it's safe to do myself, I'll do it myself! I believe in learning on the job and buying tools as I go along, and I now have a head full of DIY facts - and a garage full of power tools!