There’s nothing more exciting than decorating your home the way you want to in order to have it better represent and reflect your personal and unique tastes and sense of style. However, sometimes it’s necessary to first strip away the unique tastes and sense of style of the person who happened to live there before you (if your home isn’t brand new).

Starting fresh with a clean slate is always the best option, but it can be made difficult if the designs that were left behind really left their mark, meaning for example the wallpaper choice (which you don’t happen to like) seems to really be stuck to the wall. Sure, you could try removing it yourself or just paint right over it, but more likely than not pieces of that old design will remain and will obstruct the new vision that you have for your home. The answer: hire a professional to remove any old wall paper!

Types of Wallpaper

Wallpaper often has a decorative outer surface that sits on an under-layer backing with glue. The outer surface might be foil or it could have an acrylic finish coating the wallpaper. Some older wallpaper might even have a vinyl layer on the surface. If the surface layer of the wallpaper is not porous, this complicates the removal process because the wallpaper solvent will not absorb through the wallpaper to activate with the glued under-layer. In this case, the professional will use a special tool that scores the entire surface of the wallpaper. This scoring creates small holes throughout the wallpaper that will facilitate absorption of the solvent for loosening and removing the wallpaper.

Age of Wallpaper/Difficulty of Removal

The way wallpaper separates and removes from walls depends on how the walls were prepared before hanging the wallpaper. If the wallpaper hangers primed the walls properly prior to hanging the wallpaper, you will probably find that the wallpaper comes off easily. If the wallpaper hangers did not prime and prepare the walls, the wallpaper will not remove easily and special tools and equipment will be necessary for the removal process. You might have wallpaper that has a layer of paint over it. This situation creates a complicated removal process that will require a wallpaper steamer to loosen the wallpaper. The steaming process will be involved and messy – not pleasant for a do-it-yourselfer, but standard operating procedure for a professional with the right tools and the skills to handle these conditions.

Prevent Damage to Walls

The wallpaper removal process may involve saturating the wallpaper with a special solvent to separate it from the wall surface. This process can be risky because too much moisture may damage the walls. Drywall is especially vulnerable to damage from over application of wallpaper solvent. During the removal process, the professional will need to scrape the walls carefully to prevent gouging or damaging the wall surface behind the wallpaper. The professional’s tools and specialized skills should ensure that the wallpaper comes off successfully without damaging walls.”

For the best in painting, wall paper removal and application make sure to contact Flying Colours Painting, your Ottawa painting professional.