Painting Over Wallpaper: Are You Up for the Challenge?

Wallpapers are great. They’re excellent additions to any home, whether they’re on the walls or even on the ceilings. They’re perfect if you live in a rental or a dorm room and want to add some style and personality to your living space.

It’s the perfect solution even if you have a basement apartment in Salt Lake City that needs a bit of finishing. However, there are times when you move into a home and realize the existing wallpaper does not fit your aesthetics at all. Or, even if it does, it’s already in poor condition and needs immediate replacement.

Now, if a complete wallpaper removal project looks too time-consuming for you, your immediate thought might be to just paint over it. Many may see this as a big no-no in terms of home improvements, but many professionals suggest that this is actually doable, as long as you know how to do it right.

There are times when removing the paper before the painting project is the right way to go. But, this can sometimes damage the walls, especially if you’re trying to remove many layers. Painting over them means the drywall or plaster walls underneath will remain in good condition.

Also, you get to save time as well, so it’s perfectly understandable to skip the task as long as certain conditions are met. To achieve the most satisfying results possible, here are some steps you should definitely consider.

Prep your working space

If the wallpaper has been there for quite some time, it may have accumulated a good amount of dirt and dust. To get rid of these, use a damp – not wet – rag and wipe the surface carefully. Make sure to tape off the wall trim to avoid any damage from the primer.

Also, free up the same from any furniture that will not only hinder you but may also get unnecessary paint droplets on them. For those you can’t move out of the room, make sure to cover them adequately with plastic bags or newspapers.

Clean up any loose edges and corners

For old wallpapers, it’s only natural to find some peeling, corners or seams that aren’t sticking on the walls as properly as they should be. This should not be a reason for you to forget about the project and completely peel off everything.

You can simply use a strong adhesive to fix those loose corners immediately. But, before painting over these wallpapers, make sure the adhesive is completely dry for a smoother application.

Use an oil-based primer

Now that the surface is clean and smooth, and you’ve taken all the necessary safety precautions to ensure everything goes well, your next step is to apply primer. When using an oil-based primer, it’s important to go slow when you start and don’t apply way too much.

Less is more because this type of primer tends to get a little splashy.

Also, while most oil-base primers take a while to dry and may have that unique smell, you can look for options that promise faster drying times.

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