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Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

July, 2004

Removing Paint from Tile and Concrete

Q. I am trying to find the best way to remove paint from both a tiled bathroom and a concrete patio.

The bathroom tile in my 64 year-old home is original (ceramic I think?) and was painted by the previous owner about 10 years ago. The paint has started chipping and I was wondering if I should remove the paint (if so how?) and repaint or try to sand the chipped parts and repaint? What steps should I take?

The other problem is the patio. The previous owners painted the concrete patio using a polyurethane floor enamel designed for wood or metal. It of course is now also chipping and looks terrible. I would like to remove it and then use a concrete stain. What would be the best way to remove the old paint enamel?

Thanks for your help, I definitely neet it!

A. On the painted tile, I would use a power, palm sander to feather the chipped paint otherwise, trying to remove the paint can cause a real mess. I recently noticed that one of the big box hardware stores was selling paint kits for refinishing bathroom tile and fixtures. This may be worth a try when you rpaint the tile.

About the patio paint, as long as the area is managable, 10 feet by 10 feet, you could try a strong mixture of dish washer detergent and hot water. Mix a cup of detergent and 2 quarts of hot water, pour the mixture on a section of the painted surface. Allow it to stand for 10 to 15 minutes, then with a putty knife or scraper, scrape the mixture away.

This is a procedure I use at my home.

Best regards
Tom Burke

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