What to do After You Remove Wallpaper From Walls

Properly preparing the surface before applying finish coat ensures consistent finish

After you remove wallpaper from the walls in your room, what do you do next?

Well, you should treat the walls as if new drywall was just installed.

Some walls may have been prepared really well before applying paper. In a case such as this, you'll probably just have to clean the new, exposed surface, and paint.

There are times, however, especially in older homes, the wallpaper was simply applied without any thought given to proper surface preparation whatsoever. The result is a really tough time of removing paper to begin with, followed by a rough, grainy feel to the newly exposed surface.

It's this scenario I want to talk about, because while it may take a little work to get the surface back to a smooth, consistent feel, it certainly will be worth the effort.

What to do After Wallpaper is Removed

  • Fill in any cracks and holes in the wall with your favorite filler

  • Caulk the corners of the walls to hide any imperfections or irregularities.

    Repeat this process for the joint where the ceiling meets the wall.

    (Please go to my page on finishing irregular wall corners and ceiling joints for more detailed information.

  • Completely sand the entire surface of the wall to remove dried paper bits, and old dust and dirt particles from previous work.

  • Coat the surface with a latex, all-purpose primer

  • Lightly sand entire surface

    After you've accomplished these steps, you're ready to apply the finish coat.

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