Natural stone, such as slate, granite, limestone, sandstone, and other materials, are some of the most difficult floors to remove. Unfortunately, there is no getting around it, the process involves a considerable amount of time and manual labor if you want to get it right.
The first thing you should do is remove and base any moldings you may have. This can be done with a crowbar, leaning against a piece of wood. The wood is spliced against the wall, to protect your drywall from damage.
Once you have removed the trim, you should inspect the floor to see if it already has loose tiles or weak grout lines. If it is possible to remove the flooring material by hand, do so and use it as a starting point for the entire process.
The actual process of removing the tiles is done with a chisel and hand mallet. The chisel should be placed in the grout lines and struck in such a way as to create an opening where it can reach the two adjacent tiles. If necessary, a small lever can be used to lift parts that are particularly sturdy.
If you are reusing the subfloor under the tile, be very careful not to damage it with the chisel. Once the tile is lifted, you will probably need to sand the undercoat to remove the tough stone adhesives that are used.
Since removing natural stone is so difficult, the subfloor is often removed and replaced along with it. This saves time as you don’t have to go slow and worry about damage to this layer. It also means that tough stone stains do not have to be chiseled or sanded, as they can simply be removed with the lower level.