How to Remove Painted Wallpaper from Plaster Walls

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Are you tired of the outdated painted wallpaper on your plaster walls? Removing painted wallpaper may seem like a daunting task, but fear not! In this guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of removing painted wallpaper from plaster walls. By following these techniques, you can easily transform your walls and create a fresh canvas for your next home improvement project. Let’s dive in!

Why Remove Painted Wallpaper from Plaster Walls

Painted wallpaper may have been popular in the past, but it can now make your walls look outdated and dull. Removing painted wallpaper from plaster walls is essential for several reasons:

  1. Aesthetics: Painted wallpaper can clash with your desired interior design, preventing you from achieving the desired look and feel in your space.
  2. Damage: Over time, painted wallpaper can deteriorate, peel, or become discolored, giving your walls an unpleasant appearance.
  3. Preparation for Painting: If you plan to paint your walls, removing the painted wallpaper is crucial to ensure a smooth and long-lasting paint application.
  4. Clean Slate: Removing the wallpaper allows you to start fresh and explore various wall treatment options, such as textured paint or a different wallpaper.

Necessary Tools and Materials

Before you begin the wallpaper removal process, it is essential to gather the necessary tools and materials. Here’s a list of items you will need:

  1. Scoring tool: Used to create small punctures in the wallpaper, allowing the removal solution to penetrate.
  2. Wallpaper scraper: A tool designed to scrape off the wallpaper once it has been softened.
  3. Drop cloths: Protective coverings to prevent any mess or damage to your floors and furniture.
  4. Warm water: Used to mix with the wallpaper removal solution for effective wallpaper softening.
  5. Wallpaper removal solution: There are various commercial solutions available that help dissolve wallpaper adhesive, making it easier to remove.
  6. Spray bottle: Ideal for applying the wallpaper removal solution evenly.
  7. Sponge or cloth: Used to wipe away excess solution and softened wallpaper.
  8. Bucket: To hold the warm water and the solution mixture.
  9. Protective gloves: Ensure you protect your hands during the process.
  10. Safety goggles: Recommended to prevent any wallpaper debris or solution from getting into your eyes.
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Step-by-Step Guide on Removing Painted Wallpaper

Now that you have your tools ready, let’s delve into the step-by-step process of removing painted wallpaper from plaster walls:

Step 1: Prepare the Area

Before you start, clear the room as much as possible. Remove any furniture, wall decorations, or electrical outlet covers. Cover the floors and any remaining furniture with drop cloths to protect them from potential damage.

Step 2: Score the Wallpaper

Using a scoring tool, make small punctures in the wallpaper. This will allow the wallpaper removal solution to penetrate and soften the adhesive more effectively. Be cautious not to damage the plaster walls while scoring.

Step 3: Apply the Wallpaper Removal Solution

Mix warm water with the wallpaper removal solution according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Pour the mixture into a spray bottle for easy application. Spray the solution generously onto the scored wallpaper, ensuring it is thoroughly saturated. Allow the solution to penetrate the wallpaper for the recommended amount of time.

Step 4: Scrape off the Wallpaper

Using a wallpaper scraper, gently scrape off the softened wallpaper. Start at the edges and work your way inward. Be patient and avoid applying excessive force to prevent damage to the plaster walls. If necessary, reapply the wallpaper removal solution to stubborn areas.

Step 5: Clean the Walls

Once you have removed all the wallpaper, use a sponge or cloth dampened with warm water to wipe away any remaining adhesive residue. Ensure that the walls are clean and free from any debris or solution.

Step 6: Final Touches and Wall Preparation

Inspect the walls for any imperfections or damaged areas. Repair any cracks or holes with spackling paste and sand them down until smooth. Now you have a clean and ready-to-paint surface!

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q1: Can I use a steamer to remove painted wallpaper?
A: Yes, a steamer can be an effective tool for removing painted wallpaper. However, it is crucial to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and take precautions to avoid damaging the plaster walls due to excess moisture.

Q2: How long does the wallpaper removal process usually take?
A: The duration of the process depends on various factors, such as the size of the room, the condition of the wallpaper, and your experience. On average, it can take several hours to a full day to remove painted wallpaper from plaster walls.


Say goodbye to the dated painted wallpaper on your plaster walls! By following the step-by-step guide outlined in this article, you can easily remove painted wallpaper and create a fresh canvas for your next home improvement project. Remember to gather all the necessary tools, be patient during the process, and take precautions to protect your walls. Soon enough, you’ll have clean plaster walls ready for a new look and feel. Happy wallpaper removal!

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