How to replace a broken floor tile

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How to replace a broken floor tile

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Project Overview

If you have a broken tile, you can easily replace it yourself. We’ll teach you how to remove the old tile without damaging any of the surrounding tiles. You’ll also see how to install a new tile and grout it into place. 
Continue to step-by-step instructions

Step by Step Instructions

1 Remove the broken tile from the floor
2 Clean the gap where the broken tile used to sit
3 Check that the replacement tile fits properly
4 Install the new tile
5 Grout the replacement tile
6 Clean the excess grout off the tile
  • Step 1. Remove the broken tile from the floor

    You’ll be using a chisel to remove the broken tile so protect all your surfaces from flying tile chips by putting down drop sheets. Then cover the centre of the broken tile with masking tape and drill four or five holes with a tile bit. Now use a chisel to chip away the middle of the tile. Then wedge the chisel under the tile and gently pry it off, piece by piece.
  • Step 2. Clean the gap where the broken tile used to sit

    Scrape all the grout from the edges of the surrounding tiles using a grout removing tool. Then clean the exposed floor by chipping the old glue away with a paint scraper. Now sweep the area until you’ve got a solid, dust free surface, ready for your new tile.
  • Step 3. Check that the replacement tile fits properly

    Put your replacement tile in place to make sure it will fit properly. In our case, we chipped a bit of the subfloor out when we removed the old tile. So we have filled that gap with glue and given it half an hour to cure before installing our new tile. 
  • Step 4. Install the new tile

    Mix your glue to a toothpaste consistency. Then cover the back of the new tile and run a notched trowel across it. Now place the tile into the gap and gently press it down, checking to make sure it sits evenly with the tiles around it. Then stick masking tape across the tile and wait for the glue to dry.
  • Step 5. Grout the replacement tile

    Remove the masking tape and clean any excess glue out of the gaps between the tiles with a nylon scraper. Then mix your grout, push it into the gaps and smooth it off with a grout squeegee. To get the best results, run your squeegee across the gaps at a 45˚ angle. 
  • Step 6. Clean the excess grout off the tile

    Give the grout 20 minutes to dry, then use a clean, damp sponge to wipe off the excess grout. As with the squeegee, you’ll get the best results by running it across the tile at a 45˚ angle. After every stroke, rinse the sponge to keep it clean and squeeze it out so it’s not too wet. Once the grout has cured for 24 hours the tile is ready to walk on.

Tools and Materials

Tools

  • Buckets
  • Chisel
  • Drill
  • Gloves
  • Grout
  • Grout removing tool
  • Grout squeegee
  • Hammer
  • Masking tape
  • Notched trowel
  • Nylon scraper
  • Paint scraper
  • Safety glasses
  • Sponge
  • Water

Materials

  • Drop sheet
  • Replacement tile
  • Tile glue
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Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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