How To Easily Remove Hardwood Floor In Just 30 Minutes

Aside from its durability, hardwood floors have been known to embellish beauty for over the centuries; making it the people’s preferred choice when it comes to floor coverings. When its longevity is to be asked, a hardwood floor can actually last a lifetime, depending on how it has been taken care of. But no matter how durable a hardwood floor may be, there will always be people who would still want to have it removed and replaced.

How to remove hardwood floor and what are the proper ways to do it? Removing hardwood floors can actually be difficult and time-consuming at the same time. So if you are having a hard time on removing hardwood floor and by chance, stumbled upon this article, then you are on the right track.


In this article, you will be guided step by step on how to remove hardwood floor. But before removing hardwood flooring, it is vital to know what kind of flooring was used and how it was installed before you begin removing it. This will help you choose the right tools for the job. And if you have set your mind on removing your hardwood floor by now, then by all means, you are all prepped to start the work.

What Will You Need To Remove Hardwood Floor?

To begin this work, you will obviously need the basic tools to help you in the process. Here are the lists of important tools to be used:

Circular saw: The most important tool that you will need in this situation would probably be the circular saw. You’ll need this for when you are to cut into the floor.

remove a hardwood floor with a circular saw

remove a hardwood floor with a circular saw

Chisel: You never know when you’ll need to get into a tight groove or push through some glue, so a chisel will always be handy.

Sledge hammer: You can always rely on this tool to burst things when nothing else will get through.

remove a hardwood floor with a chisel

remove a hardwood floor with a chisel

Clawhammer: You’ll need this tool to grab, pull, and rip the floor panels that are stuck up next to a wall area. Flooring scraper: The only way you’ll get a lot of glue is with the use of this tool. Flooring scraper can also help make your work easier.

Pry bar: This tool can help you when it comes to picking up floor panels that are stuck and hard to pull out.

remove a hardwood floor with a claw hammer and pry bar

remove hardwood floor with a claw hammer and pry bar

Step-By-Step to Remove Hardwood Flooring

Since you now know all the possible tools you will need and was also given ideas on how to use each one; we will now proceed to the step by step process of removing a hardwood floor.


Step 1- Prepare the area

The area in which you will be working should be wrapped with tarps for dust control. This work will be very dusty as sawdust and tiny pieces of wood would be everywhere, and you wouldn’t want to find yourself cleaning practically the entire house after, wouldn’t you?


Step 2 - Prepare the circular saw for use

Your circular saw should have the same depth as the thickness of the flooring. You wouldn’t want it any deeper, or otherwise, there will be a huge possibility of you ruining the sub floor and cutting into it. Also, a new blade for your circular saw can help you make the work easier.


Step 3 - Mark the boards that need to be removed

Before using the circular saw, you should first know where to begin. So for mistakes to be avoided, you should mark the boards that need to be removed with a piece of tape. Marking the boards will help you determine which ones to remove and which ones to retain.


Step 4 - Make a pass through the marked boards

Using your circular saw, make a pass through the marked boards. When you reach the end of the marked board, repeat the step until the woods, which are not nailed, can then be pulled out gently. You need to make sure that the marked boards are about 1 to 2 feet wide.


Step 5 - Use the crowbar to pry apart the boards

Use the crowbar, also called pry bar, to take the middle section out between the two cuts that the circular saw made. Since the middle section isn’t attached to anything, you can easily just pull the boards out. The groove side, as well, is not nailed so you can apply the same step.


Step 6 - Use a sledge hammer to loosen the tongued sides

After pulling the boards which weren’t nailed, the only side left are the tongued areas. If the tongued side of the board is completely exposed, you can use a crowbar to lift it up. However, there are tongued areas which stick with the bottom board and could be difficult pullout. In these cases, a sledge hammer should be used to loosen the hold. You can also use a thin chisel to chisel away the tongue between the board that you want to keep and the ones you want to get rid of.

remove a hardwood floor with sledge hammer

use sledge hammer to remove hardwood floor


If it is hard to insert a pry bar under the tongue to begin removing the old hardwood floor, you should use a circular saw ( equipped with a carbide blade) to plunge-cut between two boards near the tongue side of the wall. Pull off the boards between the wall and the cut to expose the tongue edge. Pry up the remainder of the boards.


You can surgically remove hardwood flooring without having to spend a lot of money on hiring people to do this work. For a better understanding of the step by step process, watching a video would undeniably be a great help to you. John Our Home from Scratch uploaded a video on Youtube that will show you the step by step process of removing hardwood floors. So this ends the tutorial on how to remove hardwood flooring.

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