Got some old foil wallpaper we're trying to remove. It has been
partially scraped off, but its nasty work and it looks like we're doing
a better job texturizing the wall than removing this stuff. Scoring,
chemicals don't work, won't soak through at all. A steamer probably
won't work as the room has been "steamed" for years. It's like an
aluminized plastic, we're at our wit's end. Any ideas?
I've removed foil wallpaper, but not flocked. Coarse sandpaper, spray
bottle of warm water. Score lightly HORIZONTALLY back and forth with
coarse sandpaper on block, taking care not to dig into the wallboard.
Horiz. will hold water better when you spray it. Spray, wait 15, spray,
wait 15, scrape gently. Repeat. I've removed lots of wallpaper, never
had trouble getting it off the wall. Messy, yes.
Tried heat? Like a sunlamp or a hairdryer, or even a heat gun on a low
setting? I've found that often makes plastic/glue interfaces soften up.
If the wall is already that beat up from prior efforts, it may seriously be
less work, and not much more money, to coat the wall with a layer of 1/4
inch drywall. Really bad spots you may want to demo and re-rock. Lemme
guess, this is a bathroom?
Ah flock on foil.
You've got a nasty job in front of you.
You need to break the face of the material in order to get water to
penetrate to the backing.
I'm assuming you have drywall as opposed to plaster. If this is the
case, you can plan on doing some damage to the wall.
Try using a garden sprayer to soften the foil face. Sometimes this
works to pull the face off. Use lots of water & be patient.
Sometimes it won't & all you can get is little pieces (a few square
In this case you'll need to penetrate the face with either a
'papertiger' do a search. Or VERY heavy sandpaper. Like 36 grit.
I've never heard of heat working.
You have my sympathies.
No kidding, have had in-laws helping. about a third of the way through
it after two days. Not getting large pieces, paper tiger is not
effective, but razors seem to get the biggest pieces.
3rd eye wrote:
No kidding. Anyway, we figured out how to make pretty quick work of it.
We didn't want to demo the walls cause they are old and thick. 1/2"
plaster over sheetrock (very quiet between rooms.)
How to remove foil wallpaper
(for those Googlers)
1. Get a couple friends/relatives over (beer if necessary)
2. Go to town on the foil wallpaper with a "Paper Tiger." Put some force
3. Saturate it with wallpaper remover. let sit for a few minutes.
4. Scrape briskly with a razor blade, comes off in big wet clumps, razor
blade stays flat on wall, no gouging. The wetter the better.
5. Resaturate with wallpaper remover to soften leftover glue deposits,
6. scrape briskly with razor blade again, removing hanger-on glue
deposits. Goes quickly, smooths the surface.
7. Use scrubbing sponge (with rough side) and a bucket of hot water to
I had clean, smooth, paintable walls after this process. One person
will get about 10-20 square feet an hour. Two or more working in stages
will go even quicker.
I cannot over-stress the importance of keeping the area to be scraped
wet with wallpaper remover. Makes it go quicker. I did this without
beer and it wasn't too bad, once the process was nailed down.
next time you have to remove wallpaper use this stuff
used w/ a scoring tool this stuff make removing wallpaper almost fun
(in a sick sort of way)
no steaming, no scraping, no gouges!
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.