Here’s how to remove wallpaper without causing any damage

If you’re looking to change the wallpaper in your home, there are some simple steps to follow on how to remove wallpaper safely, without any damage to the ...

3 min read

If you’re looking to change the wallpaper in your home, there are some simple steps to follow on how to remove wallpaper safely, without any damage to the walls.

The urge to change your wallpaper is getting stronger, but are you worried about how to remove wallpaper easily—without any help? Worry no more because you can accomplish that task without any difficulty and without losing your mind. Here’s how you can remove wallpaper without causing any damage.

  • Empty out the room

Remove all the items you have hung on the walls. Also, move the furniture to the centre of the room or, if possible, out of the room. Cover the floor and the furniture with cloth to protect them from getting wet.

  • Turn off the power

Turn off your electricity because removing wallpaper will get the surroundings wet. You can also tape the sockets so that they remain dry.

  • Understand what kind of walls do you have

Check whether you have brick/cement wall or a plasterboard wall, as some of the newer buildings tend to have them. The latter can get damaged if it gets too wet. So you have to be careful to not oversoak it.

  • Assess what kind of wallpaper you have

With a putty knife, loosen a corner of the wallpaper and peel it off. Make sure it is in an inconspicuous corner so if something goes wrong, you can easily hide it. If the wallpaper comes off easily, it is strippable. However, if the wallpaper peels off but leaves the paper backing behind, you have a peelable wallpaper.

How to remove wallpaper that is strippable

What you need: Putty knife, soap, water, rags

Method: With the help of a putty knife, start removing the wallpaper from the corner. Peel the rest of the paper with your hands. Try not to rip it. If the paper does tear, loosen another corner and start again. Repeat the process, and soon, the room will be wallpaper-free. Clean the walls with soap and water once all the wallpaper has been removed.

How to remove peelable wallpaper

What you need: Water, wallpaper stripper liquid, spray bottle, putty knife, ladder, soap, water, rags, rubber gloves

Method: Start by removing the top layer of the wallpaper. Like before, with a putty knife, loosen one corner and pull the wallpaper off the paper layer left behind. To remove the paper backing, you must first mix hot water and wallpaper stripper liquid and pour it into a spray bottle. Spray the solution on a small part of the wall. Let the solution be absorbed for a few minutes. Then, scrape the wallpaper off with a putty knife. Once the wallpaper has been removed from that particular section, move on to the next one. Finally, clean the wall thoroughly with soapy water, so that any excess primer or paste is removed.

How to remove wallpaper with a steamer

You can also use a steamers available at hardware stores or online which remove wallpaper fairly easily too. The steam softens the glue under the paper. Place the steam unit’s pad on top of the wallpaper for 10 to 15 seconds. If the paper comes off, use a putty knife to scrape it off. If the 15 seconds aren’t enough, place the steamer on that area for an extra 10 seconds. That will be enough time for the adhesive to soften. Alternatively, you can use a garment steamer too but this could take a little longer.

How to remove wallpaper glue

Even though you would have removed all of the wallpaper, some sections are likely to be sticky with glue.

The fastest and easiest way to remove these is to scrub it with hot soapy water with a sponge. If the adhesive is being stubborn, add some baking soda or vinegar to the soapy water.

Make sure you get it all out because even tiny amounts of paste or glue can be a problem if you want to stick the next wallpaper or even if you choose to paint the wall.

If all of the glue or paste doesn’t come off, when you paint the wall later, the paint will crackle and flake. And if you try to apply a different wallpaper, it will fail to stick properly or even form bubbles.

Does removing wallpaper damage the walls?

These days, most people opt for peel and stick wallpaper. Such wallpapers can be stuck using low- to high-tack adhesives.

The usage of this kind of glue allows the wallpaper to leave a wall pretty easily. So no, removing wallpaper does not damage the wall in any way. However, it is best to apply wallpaper in a room that is well ventilated.

That way, moisture damage will be minimal and will not start building up under the wallpaper. If you are still worried, apply a sample of the peel and stick wallpaper on a small section of the wall. Leave it on for a few days.

Then, remove it and check whether it has left any mark or adhesive residue.

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