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home maintenance  /  October 10, 2018

Wallpaper 101: How to Properly Remove Wallpapers

Whether you’re thinking of painting over your wall or putting up a fresh layer of wallpaper, it’s important to know how to remove your unattractive and outdated wallpaper. Handyman Connection® of Golden offers a step-by-step guide to removing different types of wallpapers.

Starting Fresh

There are no hard rules about whether painting or putting another layer of wallpaper over your existing wall covering is a good idea or not. However, home improvement pros and DIY enthusiasts alike agree that the best way to go about putting a new layer of wallpaper is to strip the walls bare. That way, you have a cleaner surface to work with.


It’s essential to prepare not only your walls but also the room or area where the wallpaper removal will take place. Move any furniture near the wall to the center of the room, or outside if possible. The remaining furniture and the rest of the floor should be covered with drop cloths. Cut the power to the particular room you’ll be working in. Don’t forget to cover light switchboards and electrical outlets with painter’s tape. 

You also have to determine your wall type before you start peeling away. Take care not to get your walls too wet, especially if they’re made of plaster or drywall.

Removal Process for Different Wallpaper Types

  • Strippable Wallpaper

Use a putty knife to lift the corners of the wallpaper that can be stripped. Starting from the lifted corners, you may peel the rest of the paper with your hands. Wash off any remaining wallpaper from the wall with soap and water. Wait until the surface is completely dry before you paint or apply new wallpaper.

  • Traditional Wallpaper

Mix hot water with a wallpaper stripping solution in a spray bottle. Starting at the bottom segment, apply the solution to a small portion of the wall, ideally 3’x3’. Let the wallpaper absorb the solution for about a few minutes before you scrape the paper off. You may need to cut through the wallpaper if it’s still difficult to scrape even after soaking in the solution. Once you’ve scraped off everything, clean the walls with soap and water.

  • Peelable Wallpaper

Lift the corners of the paper with a putty knife and peel away. For the paper backing layer that’s left behind, remove as you would a traditional wallpaper. If these methods prove ineffective, use a steamer to loosen the adhesive. Proceed with scraping off the wallpaper and clean the walls with soap and paper.

Let Handyman Connection of Golden take care of all your wallpaper application needs. Call us now at (303) 848-2752.

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