Wallpaper makes a big statement about a room. It can be a great way to inject color and personality. Are you looking to replace your existing wallpaper, or do you just want to remove what’s there already? Wallpaper sure seems to go on easy. It should be easy to remove too, right? It’s actually more difficult to remove than it appears. It can be messy, time consuming, and if you use the wrong tools you can damage the wall. There are good ways to remove wallpaper and bad ways.
Good Wallpaper Removal Solutions
• Make sure the electricity to the room has been turned off.
• Wallpaper removal usually involves steam so protect the floors and trim by taping down plastic sheets.
• Pull the material off first. Start at a corner and peel the material off without using any water. This will leave the backing on the wall.
• Use a sponge to add water to the backing so the paste will absorb it. Then take a metal knife that has rounded corners and remove as much paste as possible. Be careful not to scrap too hard or you might damage the drywall.
• If there is any paste left behind, you can use a gel stripper. You will know if there’s any paste or backing left behind if the wall’s surface has a shiny sheen to it.
• There is also the option of scoring the surface first with a scoring tool so the water can get through and then use a stripping solution.
• If the wallpaper has been on the wall for 40+ years it might be very hard to remove. You can use a steamer to remove it. You can get an idea of how long it will take by testing a corner to see how difficult it will be.
• If you determine you’ll need to use chemicals, be sure to use gloves and goggles.
Difficult Ways to Remove Wallpaper to Avoid
Remember to use tools that are designed to remove wallpaper. Otherwise you risk gouging the wall’s surface. You can also dent the wall if you apply too much pressure when you try and remove the backing. This will just add time and money to your renovation. Do not paint over wallpaper. While this seems like a quick and affordable way to renovate your home, it will be obvious to anyone that sees it and when the wallpaper does start to peel, your paint job will go with it too. If you’re watching a home improvement show that goes this route turn the channel. Painted wallpaper just screams that you don’t care about your home and it you’re planning to sell it won’t help the resale value. Painting will be faster, but you’ll be left with the wallpaper seam lines showing and if the wall is a single color without a pattern, those lines will stick out like a sore thumb.