Bathroom Demolition Tips & Removal Process

Selective demolition like those for bathrooms can be quite easy if you have the needed guidance. This article provides useful guidance or tips on how to go about bathroom demolition.

Here, demolition is restricted to only the bathroom area.

However, several steps must be followed for such demolition to be comprehensive enough.

How To Demo A Bathroom

One of the first things to consider is whether to follow the DIY method or hire the services of a professional. The answer to this question lies in your specific needs.

Due to the growing popularity of DIY measures, we’ll be providing you with its pros and cons.

Is DIY Bathroom Demolition the Right Choice for Me?

If you’re fascinated with getting involved in demolition projects, then there’s a strong possibility you won’t carry out your bathroom demolition. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.

As a matter of fact, you’re likely to reduce the overall bathroom demolition cost of the project if you know what to do.

DIY Bathroom Demolition Pros

DIY demolition is a great way to save costs by performing the demolition procedure yourself.

In a nutshell, this option is less expensive.

Other benefits include salvaging of materials; you also have the opportunity of getting immersed in the work by breaking up some stuff.

  • Saving up on Cost

The foremost benefit of having to carry out DIY bathroom demolition is its cost-saving feature.

Here, there’s no need to pay a demolition contractor as all of the tasks are performed by you. However, the cost is only saved when the procedure is done right.

Damaging key installations like utility lines embedded in walls can increase costs as such installations need to be fixed. Sometimes, certain damages may incur much higher fees than you’d have paid professionals.

DIY bathroom demolition is only possible when there are no signs of lead or asbestos in the construction materials being demolished.

Otherwise, it’s best to have trained professionals handle such demolitions.

  • Salvaging of Materials

Salvaging of construction materials is one green demolition option that ensures the reuse or sale of salvaged materials. Here, you won’t have to ship everything to the yard.

Rather, proper sorting occurs from where useful items are separated and recycled.

  • Breaking up Stuff

There’s an inner satisfaction that comes from knowing that you’re doing something worthwhile. This feeling is even greater when it’s your first time to perform or carry out demolition work.

As always, it’s important to know what you’re doing.

Breaking up or destroying some stuff during demolition can be satisfying. As a matter of fact, it can be a stress-relieving exercise for many. Areas you may be breaking up include floors, walls, and also ripping up cabinets.

DIY Bathroom Demolition Cons

While there are clear benefits to bathroom demolition, disadvantages also abound.

These disadvantages range from being responsible for debris cleanup and disposal, greater risks are posed, below-par results, and labor-intensive.

DIY bathroom demolition takes longer periods to complete.

  • Being Responsible For Debris Cleanup and Disposal

One of the main disadvantages of DIY bathroom demolition is that you’re responsible for cleaning up after demolition is completed. This is quite different from a situation where a pro demolishes and cleans up the area.

Cleaning up after demolition may add to the inconvenience faced.

  • Greater Risks Are Presented

A lot of things could go wrong during DIY demolition. Utility lines may be damaged, plus you could be exposed to hazardous materials like lead paint.

When dealing with drywall, such may let off fine dust which causes lung and eye irritations.

There’s also a possibility of getting yourself injured through the use of basic demolition tools. You won’t be exposed to such risks if a professional is handling the job.

  • Getting Sub-Par Results

Bathroom demolition is only recommended if you know just what to do. Anything less than satisfactory will present itself on a larger scale when the remodeling work is completed.

So, it’s best to allow a pro to handle the demolition process for you. This leads to expected outcomes.

  • Labor Intensive Procedure

One easily identifiable feature of bathroom demolition is its labor-intensive procedure. Being a physical activity, you’re solely responsible for performing all demolition tasks.

Such backbreaking work makes you exhausted.

There’s a lot of lifting, pushing, pulling, and lifting involved. Knowing this enables you to choose whether it’s the best option for you.

  • Takes Longer Time to Complete

DIY bathroom demolition takes longer to complete. This time-consuming process is even worsened when major remodeling work is to be performed.

Time spent on the job reduces when carrying out smaller demolition work.

Another reason why DIY bathroom demolition takes longer is due to the lack of experience of the homeowner. The same work is completed much faster by a professional.

How To Prepare For Gutting A Bathroom

Before bathroom demolition begins, some level of preparation is necessary.

It includes basic actions like renting a dumpster, clearing out stuff, removing everything hanging on walls, shutting off utilities, and draining water from the toilet and faucet.

  • Renting a Dumpster

As part of the preparation process, you’ll need to have a dumpster ready for dumping debris. A residential dumpster should serve this purpose. These come in different sizes.

Pick one that’s appropriate or contains all the debris.

  • Clearing Out Stuff

It’s important to clear out stuff from the cabinets and vanity area. These include shelves, linen cupboards, shower areas, and storage. You may have to dispose of items you may not be using.

All cleared stuff will need to be taken out of the bathroom area in readiness for demolition.

  • Removing Everything Hanging on Walls

There are likely to be several things hanging on your bathroom walls. These include mirrors and cabinets among others. Taking down these items makes way for demolition proper to commence.

  • Shutting off Utilities

For bathroom demolition to go on smoothly, all utilities will need to be shut off. This action enhances safety. You might want to call an electrician and plumber for the proper disconnection of utilities.

This forestalls any accident(s) that might occur.

  • Draining Water from Toilet and Faucet

When water is shut off, some of it remains in pipes and toilet tanks. These need to be drained out. Some flushing will be to help drain out the water.

With this process completed, the chances of experiencing small-scale flooding are reduced or eliminated.

Demolishing A Bathroom Step By Step

The actual process of gutting your bathroom is kick-started after performing all necessary preparatory actions.

The process begins by tearing out the vanity and sink, removing the toilet, tearing down the tile, and removing the shower or bathtub.

First, you’ll need to have your tools ready. Such tools include a shop-vac, hammer, reciprocating saw, chisel, adjustable wrench, utility knife, bucket, and a pry bar.

What more? You need to put on safety gear such as long pants and sleeves, safety goggles, a face mask, work gloves, and sturdy boots.

  • Tearing Out the Vanity and Sink

A bucket needs to be placed under the sink to collect water in the drain trap. With the help of your adjustable wrench, unscrew nuts found around the P-trap. With this component removed, empty the water into the bucket.

Next, unscrew nuts around water supply lines that enter through the wall.

You’ll need to release the sink of any other nuts and bolts before pulling it out. Sinks lying on the vanity area will need to be lifted and pulled out. Most vanity areas will be fastened to walls.

Unfasten these by loosening the bolts before pulling out the vanity.

  • Removing the Toilet

The next stop or target is the toilet. Using your utility knife and adjustable wrench, unscrew the pipe from the tank.

The supply line valve will also need to be loosened. With the tank free, lift this and place it aside (this is mostly applicable to two-piece toilet models).

Now, you’ll need to loosen nuts and bolts holding the toilet base to the floor. You’ll also need to cut through caulk found at the toilet base before lifting the toilet.

Next, scrape off wax around the drain flange before unscrewing the flange.

To prevent sewer gases from escaping, the open hole needs to be stuffed. Rags should serve this purpose. All of the debris will need to be taken out to the dumpster.

  • Tearing Down the Tile

Both floor and wall tiles need to be taken down.

This is where your chisel, pry bar, shop vac, and reciprocating saw and hammer come in handy. Steadily chip away at the tiles using your hammer and chisel until they’re completely off.

The exposed drywall should be cut through using a reciprocating saw. Next, get a pry bar target the seams for demolition. It’s important to consider the presence of others when performing demolition work.

This helps limit any accidents.

  • Removing the Shower or Bathtub

The bathtub will be the last in line for removal.

You’ll need to unscrew the tub from wall studs while cutting through caulk found between floor and tub. With the tub free from the wall, consider prying it off the wall.

This is taken out to the dumpster for onward disposal.

Calling A Bathroom Demolition Contractor

You don’t have to go through this entire procedure outlined above as it can be overwhelming for some people. The help of a professional may be all you need as you won’t have to worry about a thing.

However, only reputable demolition contractors should be called or hired for such projects.

Bathroom demolition and removal tips have been provided above. You’re able to follow the procedure outlined above to perform a fairly decent demolition task.

Related Articles: