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Old 04-13-2014, 12:01 AM   #1
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


Hey guys, my grandmas wallpaper that I'm trying to get off is not coming off at all! If it does it comes off in little tears. Steamed, used dif (covered everything this time!) I'm guess it was applied right to the drywall. I want to paint over it...what kind of steps should I take to paint over it? Primer? Skim coat? Just not 100% confident that I can do it based on my own knowledge.

Thanks for the help everyone! I appreciate it!

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Old 04-13-2014, 07:34 AM   #2
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


Welcome to the world of wallpaper removal. There are several things yet to try such as a scoring tool and lots of hot water. I would highly recommend against painting over wall paper.

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Old 04-13-2014, 08:25 AM   #3
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


Try scoring a section, and rolling on a solution of hot wallpaper and fabric softener. You may have to roll several times before adhesive starts to loosen, but I have found fabric softener to be more effective than dif on difficult removals. Also a zip strip tool works much better than a standard broad knife for scraping. Good luck.
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Old 04-13-2014, 09:49 AM   #4
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


remove the drywall. replace with new drywall.
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Old 04-13-2014, 10:13 AM   #5
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


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remove the drywall. replace with new drywall.
You got to be kidding?
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Old 04-13-2014, 10:25 AM   #6
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


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You got to be kidding?
absolutely not. i have removed wallpaper before. what a PITA and freaking mess.
THEN, i had to fix the damaged DW. of course some WP comes off easy enough to not warrant this'


Joshie
how much time & effort do you have into what you have done so far ?
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Old 04-13-2014, 10:39 AM   #7
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


In my opinion, wallpaper is either going to come off, or it is not. We can talk about hotter water, longer soak times, fabric softener, paper tigers, etc. However, those approaches simply pale in comparison to how the wallpaper was applied. It reaches a point where it simply is not worth it.

Replacing the drywall is obviously an option, but when you consider removing the toilet, sink/vanity, lights, all door, baseboard and window trim, etc., I think it's really overkill. Don't forget the wall/ceiling corner seams. If the ceiling is popcorn, you have a whole 'nother kettle of fish, because now you either have to remove a popcorn ceiling as well, or try to feather in the popcorn at the edges after finishing that seam. Even if it's not, you still have to tape the ceiling joints, and then repaint the ceiling as well. (You can sometimes get away with caulking that joint rather than taping.)

Painting over wallpaper actually works fine, if prepared right. If the wallpaper is vinyl, then it's laminated - i.e. it's in basically 2 layers - the outer plasticy layer, and the paper layer attached to the wall. Normally you can peel off the outer layer, leaving the rough paper attached to the wall. If the wallpaper is paper, then you don't really need to do anything.

Even if you're painting over, you should still wet the wall first, to help find any areas that are not really well attached. You may notice some bubble ups, or some peeling areas. These should all be removed.

Scrape and scrub and areas that you have gotten off, to remove any wallpaper paste.

Fill in any larger holes or gouges created when trying to remove the wallpaper, with joint compound. Let dry and sand.

Give everything a coat of Gardz, to seal off the paper and and residual wallpaper paste. Lightly sand when dry.

Skim coat the entire wall with drywall compound. I think the best method is to add water to the compound to get it thinner, apply to the walls with a paint roller (1/2" or 3/4" nap), and smooth with a squeegee. Lightly sand to final smoothness.

Prime again with Gardz to seal the drywall compound.

Paint.

Here's a pretty good explanation. The "primer" in your case is Gardz. I don't find a need for a second or third coat of compound, but YMMV. This tutorial recommends 120 or 100 grit sandpaper, but I think that's too coarse. Your final sanding should be done with grit in the range 150 - 220. Today's paints are thicker and will fill in hairline sanding marks, but you still want smaller marks than 120 will deliver IMO.

http://www.familyhandyman.com/drywal...walls/view-all

Last edited by jeffnc; 04-13-2014 at 10:52 AM.
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Old 04-13-2014, 10:42 AM   #8
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


Use a palm sander with 60 or 80 grit paper and buzz the entire thing. That'll break the surface tension and allow water to absorb through.

Don't use a scoring tool they work but can make for a nightmare when it comes off. If you press too hard with it water will get under the first layer of the sheetrock which will make for a fun time cutting out bubbles and whatnot.



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Old 04-13-2014, 11:45 AM   #9
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


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remove the drywall. replace with new drywall.
sorry , no. I think joe would agree ,but no.
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Old 04-13-2014, 12:33 PM   #10
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


Joshie.
You have already said you can't get the paper off and you want to paint it , fine. Wallpaper that is applied to bare drywall sucks more then, well pretty much anything. All options require a ton of effort, even for a pro. For me, Working for grandma pays not much more then a coffee, conversation and a fried egg sandwich which is more than I ask of her.
How you should paint over paper has already been mentioned, so I won't go there. I will just share that the last time I painted over paper that was applied to bare drywall I took the opportunity to try something fun. First it was in my own spare (basement) kitchen, and secondly I had a bunch of leftover paints available.
Primed everything with cover stain (oil and it stinks). Patched areas that needed lovin'. Painted and did a faux brick backsplash using 1/4" tape and mud.
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:05 PM   #11
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


I've removed dozens of rooms of wallpaper over the years and rarely do you have so much trouble that you consider drywalling over it all. Lots of good advice above. I just want to add that PATIENCE, PATIENCE, PATIENCE is the rule of the day. You have to soak, soak some more, soak it again, over and over and over. Give each section you do at least THIRTY minutes of soaking after you have scored the paper. Use a garden sprayer or even a Wagner power sprayer to keep the water on the wall. PATIENCE. You can't just wet it for 10 minutes and expect it to come off.

I just did a bathroom full of 1970's wallpaper adhered with clay-based adhesive and no sizing or primer was used on the wall. What a bi***. But, with patience, lots of hot water, and some elbow grease, it came off. Not easily, but it came off.

I did have some areas of damage where I gouged the wall, but with some Gardz and joint compound, they were repaired and the walls are as good as new.
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Old 04-13-2014, 04:47 PM   #12
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


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Originally Posted by Fix'n it View Post
absolutely not. i have removed wallpaper before. what a PITA and freaking mess.
THEN, i had to fix the damaged DW. of course some WP comes off easy enough to not warrant this'


Joshie
how much time & effort do you have into what you have done so far ?
I have about 4 hours into it. Lotta effort haha maybe the scoring tool would work... Thanks for the help everyone
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Old 04-13-2014, 05:01 PM   #13
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


As previous posters have mentioned it takes patients. We some times use a scoring tool and sometimes an orbital sander, as another poster mentioned. The key is to get all the loose paper, the face off and let the water or chemical dwell long enough to work. Sometimes placing plastic over the areas that you have put your chemical or water onto will help with the dwell time. Patience, patience and more patience is usually how it goes when removing wallpaper. I don't recommend painting over it and I've never seen a wall that needed to be dry walled over due to the fact that paper would not come off. We have removed some stubborn wallpaper over the years, but not once have we considered painting over it or dry walling over it.
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Old 04-13-2014, 05:27 PM   #14
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


As stated adding fabric softener to the water really helps.
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Old 04-13-2014, 10:59 PM   #15
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Wallpaper is not coming off!


If you are going to sell the house to someone that you don't like, by all meansaint over the paper. If you are going to keep it, do the right thing and remove using one of the many solutions suggested here. Ron

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