How To Remove Wallpaper Without Damaging The Wall

Removable wallpaper as the name suggests, is an easily detachable wallpaper alternative.

It is also known as a temporary or a peel-and-stick wallpaper. Removable wallpaper has become the new trend in home décor.

The great thing about removable wallpaper is that it can be changed often. If you are those people who keep changing their room appearance and style, then this is for you.

Does Removable Wallpaper Work?

The same way you can change the pictures on your wall, you can do the same for your wallpaper. It is an affordable solution that transforms any space to become classy and unique.

The main difference between traditional wallpaper and this new trend of removable wallpaper is the installation and removal. Removable wallpaper is simple to install and remove. It leaves no residue when removed.

When installing this wallpaper, no special skills are required. First and foremost, the surface where you want to place it should be clean and dry.

Clean the walls thoroughly before placing the wallpaper. For best results the walls should be free from dust and dirt.

After cleaning, give them ample time to dry. If you had just painted the the door and wall, give it ample time to dry completely. Do not be in any rush to install a wallpaper on a wet wall.

Wallpaper cannot stick on wet walls. The next step is to stick your wallpaper. All you need to do is peel off the back liner and apply the strips on the wall.

You should start at the top and then work downwards. Another interesting thing is that if you place it wrongly you can just peel it and stick again.

The wallpaper will serve you for a good amount of time and when you want to remove it, you’ll simply peel it off.

If you want to reuse the wallpaper later, remember to save the backing. Find a place to lay it down flat for the wallpaper to be placed on once it is removed.

Does peel and stick wallpaper work?

A good quality wallpaper will not only improve your room design buy also work well and serve you for a long time. A bad quality one will not be very durable.

When choosing your peel and stick wallpaper ensure you look for the right (quality) one. There are many options to choose from, whichever you choose, just ensure it has the following essential things:

A peel and stick application: having a peel and stick option will save you a lot of time when putting it up. Some removable wallpapers require you to put up and adhesive manually on the paper.

This is quite tiring and time-consuming especially when you are a first-timer.

Ensure you choose quality paper: take a paper that is good quality. Feel it to be sure that quality is perfect. A good quality one will be slightly heavy and not too sticky.

Do not be swayed by the looks only. Ensure the quality is the best you could get. This is particularly important especially because there is a possibility to make a mistake when hanging it hanging it.

If you choose a high quality paper, smoothening it and placing it again should be easy. A poor quality one will have to be thrown since it will be difficult to place it again.

The paper should be reusable: a reusable wallpaper will allow you to use it again on another wall or room.

It can even be stored to be used later. Ensure you get as much as you can from your investment.

Removing existing wallpaper the easy way

People will want to remove their existing wallpapers for various reasons such as:

  • replacing the existing one to change style,
  • termites that have taken over and destroyed the wallpaper,
  • water leakage that has destroyed the existing one,
  • it wrinkled or there are molds on the walls due to humidity

If you want to remove wallpaper without causing any damage to the walls, follow the below guidelines:

Removing a wall paper can be tedious and a very elaborate exercise. You can check with the manufacturer if the wallpaper can be stripped easily.

You can also choose to hire a professional to remove the wallpaper for you. This is especially if it is too old since it may be very difficult to remove.

The professional will use steam striping. This process will make it easier to scrape the wallpaper.

Steps on how to remove wallpaper

However, the following are DIY steps you can follow to make the exercise effective.

Step 1: Unclutter the wall

Any items on the walls such as clocks, pictures frames or even vents should be removed. The wall should be left bare. Also, any furniture and upholstery that are close by the walls or reclining on the walls should also be pulled to the center of the room. If this is impossible, you may consider altogether removing them from the room.

Step 2: Line the baseboard of the wall with tape plastic

This is a protective mechanism that works to mitigate any spills, stains or ruining of the immediate floor surface. A lot of water will be used in the wall paper removal and thus protecting adjacent surfaces would be prudent.

Step 3: Start scraping off the facing of the wall paper

A wall paper has two surfaces- the facing and the backing. The facing is easiest to remove as it can be easily scraped off using a tapping knife or putty knife. Alternatively, one can opt to tear off the facing, beginning with identifiable loose edges.

Step 4: Soak the backing with hot water

The back side of a wall paper is more difficult to remove as it is the side that is firmly attached to the wall using wall paper paste or glue.

Using a sponge or a small hand vacuum cleaner, repeatedly apply hot water to its surface. Hot water helps soften the wall paper paste which makes it easier to remove it.

Use 15 mins intervals to repetitively soak the backing. You can opt to apportion your wall into sections and work on one section at a time.

Step 5: Scrape off the backing

Again, using the tapping or putty knife carefully scrape off the backing. Substantial pressure should be used in this exercise; however, you should not go overboard as this may puncture the surface of the wall.

Step 6: Use Gel Stripper to remove any remaining paste on the wall

This helps smoothen out the wall surface from any bumps caused by the presence of the paste. This will allow easier paint application or easier wall paper installation in the future renovations.

Step 7: Wash the wall

After all that scraping your wall would definitely need a clean-up. Using a damp sponge or cloth, wipe your wall thoroughly for a pleasant clean finish.

Does wallpaper damage the wall?

When not done properly, removing existing wallpaper can cause damage to your walls. How you install the wallpaper in the first place will determine how easy or difficult it will be removing it. The quality of the wallpaper is also a factor.

That is why it is insisted that you buy quality wallpaper. With good wallpaper you may also be able to soundproof your wall. Wallpaper can also damage the wall while it is still stuck on it. This can be caused by high humidity or moisture that can be trapped behind it.

Some of the causes of damage by wallpaper include:

Water: Water leakage can cause damage to the wallpaper. Issues to do with plumbing and damaged roofs can cause leakage which eventually damages the wallpapers.

To prevent this from happening, ensure you deal with the water leakage efficiently. Look for the source of the leak and repair it first before repairing the wallpaper.

Humidity: A humid environment can damage your wallpaper. If you want to have wallpaper in your bathroom walls, ensure you take the necessary measures such as having a fan.

If moisture from the bathroom is locked in behind the paper, it encourages mold and fungi which in turn will damage your walls.

Termites: If you see some small holes on your wallpaper, you have a termite problem. Use professionals to assist you with termite control to avoid any more damage on your walls.

Bad installation: if the wallpaper is not installed well, there will be bubbles and marks. This can be corrected by redoing the corners that were not done properly. You can also smooth out the bubbles in the paper.