The good news is that you are ready to re-caulk an area of your home that has been bothering you for quite some time. The bad news is that you have to first remove the old caulk around the tub before you can apply the new stuff, which can take some time. Now the better news is that the bad news isn’t so bad; removing old caulk can be done all on your own in just a short series of easy steps!
Continue reading to review a quick guide to removing old caulk around the bathtub, including what you should do if the job proves to be too big for you to manage.
What You Will Need
All of the supplies and tools you will need to remove caulk can be found at any local home improvement or hardware store. They are all reasonably priced too, so you don’t have to worry about spending outside of your budget to complete your caulking project. Here is what you will need:
🛁 Tub-and-Tile Caulk
🛁 Caulk Remover Product
🛁 Needle-Nose Pliers
🛁 Utility Knife
🛁 Putty Knife (or use the hook-end of a 5-in-1 painter’s tool)
🛁 Trash Bin
🛁 Work Gloves
🛁 Paint Brush (or foam brush)
🛁 Non-Ammoniated Bath Cleaner
🛁 Plastic Scrubbing Pad
🛁 Cloth or Rag
How to Get Started
The first step is to soften the old caulk with your caulk remover product. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions before applying the caulk remover to the old caulk.
Once the old caulk is soft, use your utility knife to slice through it, directly. Be sure the blade is fresh. Most of the old caulk should fall off easily.
Special Note: If there are extra layers of old caulk, or it is just very thick, you may need to pull it free from the joint using needle-nose pliers.
After you have removed most of the old caulk, use your putty knife or painter’s tool to rake away the rest of the remaining chunks from the joint.
With the old caulk gone, you are now ready to cleanse and disinfect the surface area. You can use a non-ammoniated bath cleaner to remove soap scum and more. Do not use cleaner with ammonia because it can produce dangerous toxic fumes when combined with bleach.
After you have removed soap scum and dirt, check for mildew. If you see mold or mildew, combine 1/3 cup of bleach with 1 gallon of water, and use your paint brush to apply it directly to the affected surface.
After you apply the bleach solution, use your plastic scrubbing pad to remove any mold and mildew present. Next, rinse the area with water and dry it thoroughly with a clean rag.