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Strip it: How to remove wallpaper

From the Resene decorating blog   wallpapers

While there's plenty of advice on how to put it up, we're often left stranded when it comes to removing wallpaper without damaging the wall.

How to remove wallpaper

Try out these handy tips for wallpaper removal.

Find a loose edge

The simplest way to strip wallpaper is by grabbing a corner and pulling down on an angle. In some cases, the wallpaper won't come away quite so easily due to a strong adhesive or a tough-to-access corner, so use a knife to help you lift away the edges from the wall.

Soak to soften

Use a mixture of warm water and detergent to soak the wallpaper – this works for both old papers and new ones with standard pastes – which will soften it up and help you pull it off easily.

If the water is simply gliding off the wallpaper, try mixing in a handful of cellulose paste. This paste ensures that the water stays on the paper long enough to soak in and soften up the glue.


If none of the above methods are getting the job done, then you may need to try scoring.

The point of a scoring tool is to create small cuts or holes in the wallpaper that will allow for your detergent to seep through and soften the backing – therefore allowing you to pull it off.

The proper tool is your best bet, but you can also try using a sharp knife or a simple kitchen fork.

Sometimes stripping the wallpaper seems impossible. If your wallpaper is in good condition, you might want to consider painting over it saving yourself the need to strip it first.

March 03, 2014

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