Wallpaper is a great way to spice up an otherwise bland room. It can also be a nightmare if you’re trying to remove it and find that it has been painted over, or the adhesive has become too much of a challenge for your patience.
This blog post will tell you everything you need to know about removing wallpaper from your home without damaging the surface beneath.
- Step 1: Identify the Type of Material
- Step 2: Gather Supplies
- Step 2: Preparation
- Step 3: Stripping the Wallpaper
- Step 4: Cleaning with Baking Soda Solution/Cleaner
- Step 5: Apply the Vinegar and Water Mixture
- Step 6: Rinse the Walls
- Step 7: Patch Holes and Cracks
- Step 8: Consider Using Primer
- Step 9: Paint the Wall
- Step 10: Replace Baseboards and Crown Molding
- Step 11: Re-Attach Light Switches
- Step 12: Replace Outlet Covers
Step 1: Identify the Type of Material
If you are trying to remove wallpaper from a wall that is covered with something else, your first step should be determining what material it is. You can do this by checking out its texture and feel.
The surface may be solid wood paneling behind the paper. It may be a plaster wall, with either lath strips or metal mesh tacked to it.
Step 2: Gather Supplies
The first thing you need to do is gather all the supplies that you will need.
The list of supplies include:
- A sharp scraper, putty knife, or box cutter
- Vinegar and water mixture
- Baking soda and water mixture
- A spray bottle or bucket
- Paper towel
Once you have your supplies ready it’s time to move on.
Step 2: Preparation
Remove all of your furniture from the room that you are going to work on. This will help to give you enough space for everything that you are working with, and it will prevent damage or stains in areas where they shouldn’t be.
If you have large pieces of furniture, such as a dresser or piano, put them in another room if possible. Make sure that you also place a cloth over your floor drains so they don’t get clogged up with paper bits.
Step 3: Stripping the Wallpaper
The first step in removing wallpaper is to prepare your room. If you are working on a small area, such as one wall or part of a wall, then all that’s required is some prep work and patience.
If you’re taking down your old wallpaper, you need to start by removing it from your walls. You can take a sharp scraper or putty knife and carefully run between the wall and paper to remove as much of the paper as possible. This is going to be messy so have some towels handy.
Take off the baseboard along with any electrical outlet plates. Make sure to take them out carefully so that they don’t break, especially if you’re removing wallpaper from plaster walls. If your wall is tiled or sheetrocked, just remove as much of it as possible using a box cutter or utility knife.
Step 4: Cleaning with Baking Soda Solution/Cleaner
After you’ve removed all of that paper and glue it on your wall, there may be some marks left behind where the adhesive used to be. To get rid of these, you can use a baking soda solution (two tablespoons of baking soda with one cup of warm water).
Slowly pour a small amount of the baking soda and water mixture over your wallpaper. Be sure you do not rub it in as this will cause damage. Allow at least 20 minutes for the paste to set in before moving on to the next step.
Step 5: Apply the Vinegar and Water Mixture
Using a spray bottle or bucket, mix your vinegar and water mixture which will be about one part vinegar to two parts warm water. Slowly begin spraying this onto areas that need it.
You may find that some of your wallpaper will begin coming off on its own at this stage. If there is any wallpaper that needs a little extra help to come down, you can use a wallpaper steamer or steam cleaner for this task, gently blotting with a towel as you go along until it’s all gone.
Once your solution has been applied, you will need to leave it on for at least 20 minutes before removing the wallpaper mixture.
Once this time is up, you can use a towel or sponge soaked in clean warm water to wipe away any of the mixtures that are still leftover on your wallpaper. It’s important not to scrub too hard as this may cause damage to your wall.
Step 6: Rinse the Walls
Now that you have removed any wallpaper, it’s time to rinse away all of the leftover residues. You can do this by filling up a bucket or spray bottle with warm water and using it in much the same way as when removing wallpaper paste.
After you have rinsed, you should make sure to wipe the wall down with a towel or paper towels until it is completely dry.
Step 7: Patch Holes and Cracks
Patch holes and cracks that were formed while removing wallpaper. If you find small areas on your wall where the wallpaper has caused a little bit of damage, you can use drywall mud and paint to patch these up.
Use sandpaper or an old towel in order to smooth out any cracks that may have formed before painting over them with your new wall color.
Step 8: Consider Using Primer
Now that you’ve removed all traces of your wallpaper and patched up any damage that was caused by removing it, you may now want to consider using a primer before painting. This will help your paint go on smoothly and last longer.
Step 9: Paint the Wall
Once all of this is done, you can now begin repainting as normal with whatever color or finish you choose.
Step 10: Replace Baseboards and Crown Molding
This is the last step, where you replace any damaged/raised borders around your room. You can easily paint these using normal painting tools with latex or oil-based paints.
Step 11: Re-Attach Light Switches
Make sure that these are all reattached once your wall is dry so that they work again as normal. This will ensure safety while getting around your room.
Step 12: Replace Outlet Covers
Replacing these is extremely simple, and can be done in much the same way as you would replace a light switch. Simply pry them off with an appropriate screwdriver or knife before replacing them with new ones that fit back on smoothly.
Make sure they are attached securely so your room doesn’t become unsafe.
Removing wallpaper from your home can be a nightmare if you don’t know what you are doing. But it doesn’t have to be.
With the right tools and a little patience, removing old wallpaper is not that difficult after all. In this blog post, we have taught you everything there is to know about how to remove wallpaper without damaging surfaces beneath.