Cleaning walls after wallpaper

kathy_aApril 9, 2011

We've been scrubbing with a rough sponge, but we have two large rooms left to clean and I'm looking for a short cut. Has anyone used an electric scrubber? We took the wallpaper off with a steamer, but there is still glue and residue left. So far that's the most tedious part of the project.

Thanks!

Here is a link that might be useful: example of scrubber

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Lori A. Sawaya

Get some Safe & Simple. Apply to a manageable section only - not the whole wall. Cover with sheets of plastic. Saran Wrap always worked just fine for me or thin, cheapo plastic drop cloths. Plastic doesn't have to be heavy grade because it won't stay on the wall. Just need something to keep the Safe & Simple from evaporating so it can loosen the glue. Let soak for a good 20 minutes. Then remove softened glue with a plastic kitchen sponge/cleaner like a Scotch Brite Dobie pad. You'll also need buckets and buckets of fresh water for rinsing.

Scotch Brite Dobie

Safe & Simple

It's worth ordering and waiting for the Safe & Simple. Really, it is. But that's not to say this process can fix every sticky situation -- there are some older glue formulas that are scary intense and need an aggressive form of removal.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2011 at 6:00PM
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Lori A. Sawaya

Forgot to mention a plastic putty knife. If the adhesive/glue is a thick layer once softened, you can use a plastic putty knife to gently scrape off the bulk. Then finish removing residue with the sponge and water.

Plastic putty knife still has sharp corners and if you're not careful, you can gouge the drywall which is also vulnerable due to the moisture and make divots in your wall that will have to patched.

Just don't rush the process.

The perfect finish to your spanking clean walls would be a coat of GARDZ.

Here is a link that might be useful: GARDZ

    Bookmark   April 9, 2011 at 6:19PM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

What she said!
No more replys needed.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 7:51AM
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Faron79

Well...I'M gonna reply...;-)

Re-read Fun-C's post.
Then read it again...

Faron

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 11:24AM
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Lori A. Sawaya

Oh my goodness! The seal of approval from christophern and Faron is very special. Thanks you guys, I appreciate it.

I've had to remove my fair share of wallpaper, not oodles and gobs of it, but enough to have refined a process that works. Collected product suggestions from here and elsewhere and ended up with this.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2011 at 4:41PM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

Well, I must say, I have removed literally thousands of rolls of paper and what you have posted works. I will add that I only ever once put the plastic on the walls, but I was stressed for time and it does work.I would normally just make sure that the S&S got to the backing by scoring the vinyl paper( if it was) and then SOAKING it, and then SOAKING it again, then proceeding as you said. Makes a real mess but with proper prep, real easy to clean up.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 5:25PM
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Lori A. Sawaya

Literally thousands? Oh my goodness, can't even imagine. You are a master craftsman. I'm not worthy. (making grand bowing motion before hitting 'submit message' button)

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 5:31PM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

It does not take much "craft" to remove paper, patience, yes. Proper prep and a little knowledge.

Thanks

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 6:20AM
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kathy_a

Perhaps I am doing something wrong? I bought the Safe & Simple stuff, applied to the walls, covered with plastic wrap and waited 20 minutes. It didn't come off any easier than just using dish soap and water - it still involved lots and lots of scrubbing. Which - if we've got to do it, we will, but I was just hoping for something more magical. :)

This is getting the glue off the wall - the actual paper was already removed.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 7:25PM
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kyliegirl

put very hot water in 2 buckets, so hot that you have to wear gloves on your hands...use large sponges and rinse sponges when they feel tacky...repeat until walls are clear of glue and prime.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 1:14AM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

How old was this paper? You may be encountering ACTUAL glue made from animal parts, in which case the S&S will not work, nor will much of anything else. A sander might be needed.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 4:47AM
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kathy_a

It was put on in 1952. Not THAT old, right?

The water was just warm to hot, not really, really hot. I could try that.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 7:48PM
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Faron79

20 minutes....?!??!?

TIME is your friend here, as with ANY removal product!

20 Min. is nowhere-near enough time.

>>> After applying plastic over the TWO stripper applications...GO OUT TO EAT, shopping, walk Fido, etc. Make it HOURS...not minutes CONTACT-TIME (or "dwell-time") is the key here....

THEN, yes...do 2 or 3 rinsing passes, changing water often.
Let dry 'til next day!
Then bring on the Gardz!

Faron

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 9:41PM
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Lori A. Sawaya

Well that's not a good sign. S&S can only do so much. I had clients with paper hung in the early 90's that S&S did not cut thru the glue.

Remember the Waverly "violets" pattern than was so popular. Lil purple flowers lots of green leaves and vines. It was a bathroom that was papered from ceiling to floor in that stuff. My guess is whoever hung that paper went overboard making sure it stuck in a moisture laden environ. If crazy glue came in a 5-gallon, then I bet that's what they used.

They ended up hiring a contractor - took aggressive sanding and skim coating.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2011 at 2:07AM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

1952, most likely WAS real glue, in which case try Faron's method with hot water. You still might have to sand and or skim it all out.Todays strippers or made for more modern PAST and not real animal GLUE( no super glue or Elmer's)I have seen many, many jobs where the ho has nailed the seams down with Elmer's and or super glue and had to aggressively sand and skim the walls.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2011 at 7:55AM
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