How To Remove Granite Countertops

One part of a house that people pay more attention to when house hunting is the kitchen. A good, well-planned kitchen can take a house from 0 to 100 real quick. Why? It serves the most function apart from the bedrooms, and it plays a part in matters regarding your health.

One prominent feature of a kitchen that catches everyone’s attention is the sink countertop. While a beautiful kitchen can uplift the look of a house, a pretty countertop takes it up a notch, and granite countertops have been doing that for a while.

It gained popularity in the 1970s and has been in use ever since, but today there are different types, and perhaps you are in the mood for a change. What better way than to install a new type of countertop? 

One that is sturdier and almost indestructible like a quartz countertop. However, this won’t be an easy feat because you need to remove the old granite countertop before installing a new one, and this task requires some level of expertise in the field.

No need to worry; this guide is designed to adequately explain how to quickly and safely remove granite countertops.

Before You Remove the Granite Countertop

These are some safety tips to follow before you remove the countertop.

  • Keep Your Working Area Clean

The very first thing you should do before removing your countertop is clear the environment. Remove all items, clear the cabinets, drawers and everything on the countertop. Remove anything that can easily be destroyed. 

  • Keep Children Away

Kids between 0 – 12 years should not be allowed in such an environment. It doesn’t matter how mature they seem. They are naturally restless and might end up hurting themselves in a bid to ‘help’ you. Inhaling large amounts of dust can also be harmful to their health. If they want to watch you, tell them to do it from outside the kitchen.

  • Keep A Safety Kit Close

A safety kit is a small or big bag that contains items like a face mask, gloves and many more. It is advisable to always have one close by. Make sure every necessary item is in it and that they are still safe to use.

  • Hire A Processional

It is a great idea to remove your countertop yourself but think about it carefully. If you know you have not been adequately trained in at least the basics of handling the tools, do not attempt to remove it by yourself.

Hire a professional to do the job. It costs more, but they know more about it than you do and will do a better job.

Tools Needed To Remove a Granite Countertop

If you decide to remove the countertop yourself, you will need some essential tools to help you out in the process.

All these items are relatively affordable and available for purchase on Amazon. If you can’t wait for it to be delivered, you can purchase them at any local construction shop near you.

How to Remove Granite Countertops

Step 1: Turn Off the Water Valves and Disconnect the Faucets

After prepping the area, put on your gloves, safety goggles and a dust mask. Then get to work and turn off the water valve. It is located beneath the sink faucet. Do this to prevent water from spilling when you are removing the countertop. 

After that, turn the waterlines above the valve counterclockwise. Use your wrench or plier to do this. If there’s still a bit of water dripping down the pipes, place the bucket or a napkin or hand towel beneath it.

Sometimes the nuts on the pipes may be too tight to remove and unscrew. In such a situation, cut the faucet pipes with a reciprocating saw and apply oil to the remaining nuts for easy unscrewing later on.

To remove the faucets, push them upward from the rim.

Step 2: Remove the Sink

The next step is to remove your sink. For under-mount sinks, look around for the hold-down brackets inside the cabinets around the base of the tub. Proceed to unscrew the nuts on the brackets and pull them off.

Next, pick up your caulk softener and apply a generous amount on it to soften the caulk around the sink. For those of you who do not know, it is a substance that seals the sink to the granite countertop. Once it has been softened, use your putty knife to break it and pull up the sink.

If it is a simple drop-in sink, use your putty knife or chisel to cut through the layer binding the sink to the countertop.

Step 3: Remove the Plywood

Now that you have removed the sink, you are halfway through the process. Beneath every kitchen countertop, a slightly thick layer of plywood separates the granite from the cabinets. Use a screwdriver to loosen the screws that connect the plywood and the cabinets and remove the plywood. Proceed to break another layer of adhesive that binds the plywood to the granite countertop

Step 4: Remove the Backsplash

All you need is a hammer and pry bar for this part. To remove the backsplash:

  1. Work in sections starting from the middle.
  2. Gently use your hammer to hit your pry bar against it in order to remove it.
  3. Remember to work in sections.
  4. Continue until all the backsplash has been removed.

Step 5: Remove the Countertop

Finally, the moment you’ve been waiting for. After following the post-removal steps listed above, it is time to remove your granite countertop completely. 

First, you have to locate the point where the granite countertop connects with the cabinets. Look closely at the top of the cabinets to identify the spot. Next, insert your pry bar into the connecting point and gently turn it around to break the adhesive.

You will need something to help you hold the gap between the countertop and the cabinets as you lift it. Keep twisting your pry bar gently through the adhesive until you get to the end. 

Continue this process for the entire length of the granite countertop with something holding the gap so it won’t stick together again. When you have successfully broken through the entire adhesive, it is time to pull the granite countertop off the cabinet.

You won’t be able to lift it on your own so have people waiting on standby to help you lift it up. 

There you have it, the step by step plan on how to successfully remove a granite countertop.