How to Remove Granite Countertops – Top 5 Ways in 2023

How to Remove Granite Countertops

Revamping the look of your kitchen can be significantly influenced by the state of your cabinets. Granite countertops stand out as a popular choice for kitchen upgrades, known for their durability and resistance to harsh treatments.

If you’re looking to refresh your kitchen’s appearance, focusing on the countertops is a wise move. While hiring professionals for this task can be expensive, the good news is that you have the option to remove your granite countertops yourself.

We understand the concern of avoiding scratches or breakage when handling granite countertops. The versatility of granite slabs makes them suitable for various applications, so preserving them during removal is entirely possible with the right tools and techniques.

It’s worth noting that an average granite block can weigh between 150 and 250 pounds. Therefore, it’s advisable to have assistance when lifting and moving the countertop to ensure a smooth and safe process.

Simple Ways for How to Remove Granite Countertops

Using a Putty Knife

Granite slabs are commonly attached to cabinets using silicone, applied in small amounts by installers. To detach the granite, the silicone needs to be cut, and a putty knife is a handy tool for the job.

Start by removing all cabinet doors and drawers. Inspect the granite and cabinet for any gaps. Identify the silicone spots and insert a wedge between the cabinet and granite, creating upward pressure.

Proceed to cut the silicone with a putty knife. Once the initial cutting is done, have someone lift the edge of the granite. Continue cutting any remaining silicone while gradually removing the entire granite slab.

Using Hammer and Shim

When removing a countertop, especially from a backsplash or walls, employing a shim and hammer can simplify the process.

First, break the caulk between the counter and backsplash using a razor blade. Be cautious not to damage the wall. Attach a wooden or plastic shim to the edge and use a hammer to force it deeper. Place shims along the edge, leaving small gaps, and use as many as needed. Pound them with a hammer until the slab becomes loose.

Using a Propane Torch

External heat can effectively melt adhesive, and a propane torch is a suitable tool for this task. Crawl beneath the cabinet to apply heat between the counter and face frame from the inside.

Hold the flame four to five inches away from the surface and heat the epoxy glue evenly until it starts melting. Heat small areas at a time to prevent damage to the cabinet wood. Wear safety eyewear while using the torch.

To free the granite, cut and melt the glue using a sharp box cutter or utility knife. Work the knife back and forth to maintain flexibility. Cut along the seam and apply heat to the nearby glue. Make additional cuts and use a scraper to widen the incision.

Once the countertop is separated, carefully lift and remove the granite with assistance.

Utilizing a Pry Bar for Granite Countertop Removal

A pry bar proves to be an invaluable tool for efficiently lifting and disassembling various components. Much like the extraction of granite from cabinets, a pry bar can be instrumental in this process.

Commence by clearing your countertop of any accessories or tools. Diligently examine the seam where the granite countertop meets the cabinet by inspecting beneath the counter.

Employ a hammer to insert the edge of the pry bar into the junction. Introduce wooden shims into the spaces you’ve just pried apart. Repeat this process until the entire slab can be detached once the granite is separated from the cabinet.

With the assistance of others, cautiously elevate the countertop to completely remove it.

Effective Use of a Multitool

The term “multitool” often brings to mind the versatile Swiss Army Knife, commonly employed for outdoor tasks. However, in this context, we refer to the multipurpose oscillating multitool, adept at tasks such as sanding, cutting, and grinding.

In countertop installation, many installers opt for a subtop. This involves affixing a plywood sheet to the cabinet’s base with screws. The granite is then placed on top of the plywood after being coated with adhesive.

To dismantle the subtop, smashing the granite with a hammer is usually required. After clearing the debris, locate and remove the screws. Alternatively, if preserving the granite is a priority, identifying the screws while the slab is in place is necessary, albeit challenging.

Navigate the gap with a potent magnet or scraper to locate a screw if space allows. Once the position is identified, mark it.

Using the multitool, puncture and cut the screw between the subtop and the cabinet’s face frame. Avoid using metal-cutting blades as they are not durable for this task.

This method may cause slight damage to the top of the face frame. However, a gentle smoothing of the area with sandpaper will render it inconspicuous.

Insert shims between the subtop and face frame to lift the granite. Repeat until all screws are disengaged. Lastly, seek assistance in raising the countertop.

Final Reflections

You can now easily uninstall granite countertops from cabinets without causing any damage. By undertaking the counter replacement on your own, you’ll not only save a significant amount of money but also acquire additional granite for your other projects!

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