DIY Network

How to Perform a Partial Demolition

When it comes to bathroom renovations, sometimes only some of the fixtures need to be removed. Host Amy Matthews demonstrates how to do a safe demolition job that won't damage the fixtures that will remain in the space.

More in Remodeling

  • Time


  • Price Range

    $1 - $50

  • Difficulty



Step 1: Disconnect the Water Supply to the Toilet

Flush the toilet to drain the water from the bowl and the tank, then use a wet/dry vacuum to remove the rest of the water from both.

If there is a silicone seal around the base of the toilet, cut it with a utility knife

cut silicone seal around base of toilet

Step 2: Remove the Toilet

Remove the plastic covers from the closet bolts at the base of the toilet. Remove the nuts and washers.

Lift the toilet off the flange and remove.

Remove the closet bolts from the flange. Scrape up the old wax ring from the flange with a putty knife and discard. Also use a putty knife to scrape up any caulk left on the floor from the toilet.

Cap off the open drain to keep sewer gases from entering the home -- and to prevent items from falling down the drain.

Step 3: Remove the Mirror

To remove the mirror, first apply several long strips of duct tape across the mirror to keep it from shattering if it breaks.

Amy recommends heavy-duty suction cups with handles for removing large mirrors. Simply press the suction cup against the mirror and pump the button several times to create suction and hold it into place.

Steadying the mirror with handled suction cups, use a pry bar to gently loosen the mirror from the wall.

heavy duty suction cups used to remove mirrors

Step 4: Turn Off the Water Lines From the Shut-Offs

Turn off the water supply at the shut-off valves, then turn on the faucet and allow the water to run out of the faucet and down the drain. Disconnect water lines from the shut-offs; keep a few towels underneath the lines to catch any water that remains in the lines.

Disconnect the drain from the bottom of the sink, then disconnect the p-trap assembly from the drain to the wall. This will make it easier to remove the vanity, since the awkward-shaped p-trap won't be in the way.

Step 5: Remove the Vanity

Use a utility knife to cut through the caulk securing the vanity countertop to the wall. Gently rock the counter back and forth to loosen, then lift off and remove.

Unscrew the vanity from the wall studs and remove. It may be necessary -- as it was in this demolition -- to widen the opening around the drain pipe to get the vanity off.

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