How to Replace Damaged Tiles

If one or more of your tiles has become loose or chipped, it needs to be removed and replaced: but doing this without damaging the tiles around it can be trickier than it sounds. Follow this guide to repair your tiles in a safe and straightforward way.

What you will need:

  •        Replacement wall or floor tiles
  •        Tile adhesive
  •        Tile grout
  •        Tile spacers
  •        Notched trowel
  •        Masking tape
  •        Cold chisel
  •        Hammer
  •        Stanley knife
  •        Electric drill
  •        Tile scraper
  •        Safety equipment (gloves and eye protection)


Wearing the protective gear, you will need to score the grout surrounding the damaged tile with the Stanley knife before you can begin. This isolates it from the rest of the wall, stopping it from loosening the rest of the tile work. Apply an X of masking tape to the tile to stop the drill bit from slipping.

1) Drill and remove the damaged tile

Using a suitable drill bit and still wearing the safety gear, bore a hole in the centre of the tile and in the four positions at the edges of the X. Remove the tape and, using the hammer and chisel, tap gently at the holes to crack the tile and remove it piece by piece, working from the middle outwards.

2) Clean up all the remaining adhesive

Use the scraper, chisel and Stanley knife to carefully remove all the remaining adhesive and grout behind the tile. It's important to get as much off as possible, or your new tile might not apply correctly.

3) Fix the new tile

Apply the tile adhesive to the new tile and use the notched trowel to spread it evenly along. Resting it on the bottom of the tile below, fit it into the space and use the tile spacers to ensure it is positioned correctly, before leaving it for 24 hours to set.

4) Re-grout

Finally, apply the grout around the edges and remove the spacers - if you've got it all right, the new tile should blend in with all the others!

Don't overlook your own safety when repairing tiles - always wear protective goggles to shield your eyes from sharp bits of ceramic.