How to Remove Paint From Concrete

Removing Paint from Concrete

The first thing that needs to happen before you can start anything significant with your tile flooring is the removal of old permanent layers. Things like paint, adhesives, oils, etc. will significantly cripple your tile job. While the thinset might have no problem sticking to the paint, the layer of paint may come loose from the concrete, weakening the strength of the thinset.

To Remove Paint from Concrete You’ll Need:

  • Stripper
  • Floor Scraper
  • Chemical Resistant Gloves
  • Old Shoes
  • Mask
  • Paint Roller and Pole

Start by gearing up. You will want to wear old shoes that you don’t care about, and gloves if you’re going to be handling the stripped paint. This stripper is no joke, it burns if you get it on your skin.

Step 1: Pour and Roll the Stripper

Pour the stripper onto the ground and roll it out with a paint roller. The layer should be thick. If it’s too thin you’ll have to go back with a second layer.

Step 2: Let the stripper sit on the paint for 20-25 minutes.

As it activates and loosens the paint, you will see it start to bubble and release itself from the concrete.  If you’re lucky like we were, you might even discover hidden dinosaur tracks underneath a few of the layers…

Step 3: Scrape

Use your floor scraper to scrape off the bubbled up paint. We found that it was best to scrape it all into a large pile and then shovel it into old boxes.

Step 4: Reapply

Reapply stripper if you’ve still got paint on the concrete.

Step 5: Wipe Down

Once you’ve scraped all of the paint off of the concrete floors, use a bucket of soapy water and a large push broom to sweep up any remaining chunks of paint and to get the stripper residue off of the concrete. Let the concrete dry for 24-48 hours before moving on to the next step of prep, or tile.