Step 3: The Scary Part

Picture of The Scary Part
Removing the shoemolding and baseboards is quite possibly the most difficult and nerve-wracking part of this project. If I cracked or broke one, I'd have to buy a matching piece, cut it, and stain it, and I really didn't want to have to go through with all that. So TAKE YOUR TIME. 

Unfortunately, I didn't take any pics of the process. But I used a combination of a 4" putty knife, a plastic gasket scraper, and the chisel to gently, GENTLY pry the molding off. If your baseboards are painted, you'll probably have a harder time, since you'll have to remove caulk, and re-caulk it (and caulk and touch up paint on nail holes, if you're picky) once the project is otherwise completed.

If they don't want to come off, DO NOT FORCE IT. It will most certainly crack. Find the stubborn nail, and use a nail set to hammer it through the board, into the wall.  Label the backs of your shoe molding and baseboard, to make it easier when re-installing. 

After they're removed, this is a good time to clean all the dust off, and find whatever slipped between the boards and the walls over the years. I found a penny!
urwatuis4 years ago
to remove baseboard molding use a small flat pry bar found at most hardware stores. They are made specifically for this purpose. If you can afford 2 so much the better. Gently work the pry bar behind the molding and then pull it away from the wall. then work your way along the baseboard, gently wiggling the pry bar and pulling the board away from the wall.
BTW this is a great idea! great 'ible