Are There Any Alternatives to Wallpaper Removal?

Anyone who has ever removed wallpaper knows what a messy, laborious, unpleasant job it can be, and even when the paper is off, the wall is left a terrible mess in need of repair. For those who are haunted by floral prints or tropical murals of past eras, are there other options besides wallpaper removal? Yes, there are!

If you know that your wallpaper is stuck good and won’t peel off, there are several ways to treat it and then paint over it so that it will soon be a distant memory. The first step is to lightly sand the paper to create a good surface for adhering to, then use an oil-based blocking primer, such as Kilz. Do not use a water-based primer, as this will reactivate the wallpaper adhesive. Now your next materials will be tightly bonded and the color of the wallpaper will be completely invisible. Now you have options:

Skim coating over wallpaper: use a nice wet mixture of drywall compound and a wide-bladed putty knife to apply a thin coating over the wall. Allow it to dry, and then sand it with a drywall sanding pad. Look carefully for rough or uneven spots, and reapply if needed. This takes practice to do well, but in the end it will create a wall that looks as good as new, ready for painting!

Texturing over wallpaper: again, use a wet (but not runny) mixture of drywall compound, but this time you will apply it to the wall with a texturing “stomp brush.” These come in a variety of sizes and patterns. Thoroughly load the brush with drywall compound and apply it to the wall, systematically moving out from one corner and covering the wall. This method also has a learning curve and will require practice. Fortunately, it is easy to try again if you are not happy with the results.

If you have wallpaper that you would like covered or removed, A.G. Williams can help in a number of ways. We are skilled in wallpaper removal, skim coating and texturing, and our professional painters can help you erase the styles of the past! Call us for a free estimate on services in New Canaan, Chappaqua, Round Hill, Briarcliff Manor, Ardsley, Mamaroneck and the surrounding area.