Stripping Wallpaper

Stripping wallpaper in your kitchen

Whenever you begin any preparation or decoration work, try to clear the room as much as possible. There will often be things that have to stay, but they should be moved into the centre of the room and covered with dust sheets. Use dust sheets to protect the floor too. Soaking wallpaper with hot water makes it much easier to remove. The water soaks in more easily if you perforate the paper first, either by scoring with the blade of a stripping knife or running an orbital scorer over the surface. Be sure to stand on a stable stepladder to tackle the higher sections.

1 Run the orbital scorer over the paper, being careful not to damage the plaster behind. Fill a bucket with hot water and add some liquid detergent and a handful of wallpaper paste to thicken the water, so it doesn’t run down the wall quite so fast.

2 Using a large sponge, wet the wall, covering a few square metres at a time. Leave it to soak for at least five minutes. Slide the edge of a wide stripping knife under the paper at a seam to see if it is ready to be stripped. It should come away in fairly large sections. If this doesn’t happen even after a long and thorough soak, you will need to use a steam stripper.

3 Hold the stripper pad at the bottom of a wallpaper length for a minute or so, until the paper around it appears damp. Move the pad up onto the next section, while pulling off the damp paper with the other hand, loosening stubborn areas with a stripping knife. Strip each length from bottom to top. Take care not to damage the plasterboard or plaster behind the paper with the blade of your stripping knife.


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