I'm starting to remove some old wallpaper in my bathroom of the condo I
bought several years ago. The age of the wallpaper is a mystery to me.
It apears to be an aluminum foil type of wallpaper. Quite shiney.
As I start to remove it, it appears that the paper is in two (or more) layers.
Not one wallpaper on top of another, but two layers for this wallpaper. In
other words the wallpaper is separating as I try to remove it. The top layer
is coming off fairly easily, but the bottom layer is firmly glued to the
Here's my question... Do I need to remove that underlying paper layer or can
I paint right over the top of it? If I need to remove it, is a steamer (which I
the best tool to use? I removed a similar wallpaper from the kitchen when I
bought the condo and it came off quite easily, but there was another layer of
wallpaper under it, which needed a steamer to remove.
No email please.
Let me guess... Built in the early 70's. The walls probably aren't
sized. Have fun with the steamer, but get ready to fill in some gouges
from the wallpaper removal.
You've got to get it down to drywall, but DON'T scrape off all of the
paper face of the drywall (yes, I've done it....)
There is no great answer to the question. I've done it every way... Steamed
and scraped it off the wall in postage stamp sized pieces, painted over it,
etc. Personally, if I was fixing a home to sell it, I'd paint over the
paper. If I was planning on keeping the house, I'd take the paper down.
The problem with painting over it is that eventually, the paper will start
to release in small sections and you'll have visible bubbles on the wall.
Even better, new paint seems to be a *great* wallpaper adhesive release
agent. As soon as you paint over it, either you begin to notice bubbles you
hadn't noticed before, or new bubbles will form or both. After that, the
painted wallpaper is even harder to remove, because the layer of paint over
it makes it that much more water and steam proof...
Take some very coarse sandpaper and sand the wallpaper now get a
garden sprayer and some paper remover called DIFF. fill the sprayer
add a little diff and spray wait a bit and spray again repeat many
times. The paper should slide off the wall, hopefully before you
soften the drywall & mud. Repair walls as needed before painting or
papering again. The idea is to cut the waterproof layer so the water
you spray can penetrate and loosen the glue. If you have to scrape
over and over it's not wet enough yet. Close the door turn on the
On Sun, 23 Oct 2005 17:21:55 -0700, "rvfulltime (was xenman)"
I've been that route before with other wall paper, but due to the nature
of the paper and how it was applied, I don't think that solution will work.
On Sun, 23 Oct 2005 21:39:53 -0500, Trekking Tom <> wrote:
Yes you need to remove the paper. That is the adhesive part. Usually
the first layer comes off easy but it leaves behind the adhesive. If
you do not remove it and decide to paint over it, it will bubble over
Peel off the foil, spray the remaining paper with warm water, let it
soak, spray again, soak again (15-30 min). Scrape gently. Water
softens most wallpaper paste very nicely. The number of layers of
wallpaper matters very little, as it is just the task of getting water
into the paste to soften it. When the paper is gone, be sure to wash
remaining paste, as it often shows texture if painted over. I would not
paint over half-removed wallpaper - it would look like crap, be rough
and irregular and impossible to remove.
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.