Two methods of removing wallpaper
Those who do not want plastered or other types of stone or wooden walls or partitions will in most cases opt for wallpaper. Plenty of varieties where it is not always easy to make a choice. Once against the wall, it will often be enjoyed for several years. But then it is time again that new wallpaper has to be installed. And removing the old wallpaper is a tedious job for which there are two methods. A method with a steam device for hard-to-remove wallpaper and a method with water that is applied with a plant sprayer or sponge.
Removing wallpaper is not a fun job
Hanging over old wallpaper seldom gives a good result. Even if the old wallpaper is nice and tight, bumps and blisters can still form and the seams of the old wallpaper often remain visible. It is therefore better to remove the old wallpaper first. Most handymen do not like removing wallpaper, but there are ways to get it done without too much annoyance. How tedious the job is depends largely on the type of wallpaper. If the wallpaper lets water through, it is not too bad, but if not, it will be a heavier job. Then it is usually a matter of persistence and fiddling around.
Sometimes it is necessary to make it porous
Sometimes wallpaper, which in principle lets water through, has a smooth water-repellent top layer. This is the case with vinyl wallpaper, for example. This layer must first be opened up before the water can penetrate to the adhesive layer. You can open it by using coarse sandpaper, a wire brush or a wallpaper perforator. Another way is to score with a wallpaper stripper or a sharp knife. Notching should not be done too deep, otherwise the wall will be damaged.
Two methods: apply water or steam device
Depending on the tenacity with which the wallpaper adheres, there are two methods of removing the wallpaper. Wallpaper that comes off fairly easily can be removed by wetting it manually and with stubborn stuck wallpaper by using a special steam device. It is wise to first try out whether the wallpaper easily comes off in order to be able to rent a steam device on time.
Process without a steam device in four steps
With wallpaper that can be removed easily, you can work without a steam device. For easier working, furniture can be better removed from the room or moved to the center.
Because (a lot of) water is used when removing wallpaper, the floor must first be covered with foil, which is glued to the skirting boards. For example, fabric floor coverings will certainly not suffer from the job. Because of that water, the electricity can also be switched off better and the covers can be used to work more easily
outlets and light switches are removed.
Then the wallpaper is wetted with a plant sprayer or wet sponge. Washing-up liquid can be added to the water for a faster result. With a thick type of wallpaper that may have been fixed with a tough adhesive, it is better to use special remover.
Let the moisture soak for half an hour during which the wallpaper will turn darker. Then wet it again and try to remove the wallpaper. Often a putty knife is needed to carefully remove the wallpaper from the wall. Try to avoid damaging the wall.
Clean the wall with warm water so that glue residues will disappear. Treat any damaged spots with wall filler and sand them smooth after curing.
Method with a steam device in five steps
With wallpaper that is difficult to remove, it is better to use a steam device. Please note that removing wallpaper (with a steam device) from a plaster wall is not recommended. Plaster absorbs a lot of moisture.
Cover the floor as you do with the no-steam method and switch off the power as well.
If necessary, use a wallpaper perforator to make holes in the wallpaper so that the steam can penetrate better.
Fill the appliance with water and connect it to electricity (from an area where it is not closed off) via a long cord or cable reel.
After the water has heated up, hold the steamer against the wallpaper for half a minute and then remove it immediately. If necessary, carefully use a putty knife.
As with the other method, the wall must then be cleaned with warm water so that adhesive residues will disappear and any damaged areas must be touched up.
Safety for every job
As with any job, safety is of great importance. Therefore, use a sturdy staircase that is high enough and that is equipped with a bracket and non-slip steps. Also wear sturdy shoes.