Popcorn Ceiling Removal

chisueJuly 14, 2011

I'm getting bids and need advice on how long this should take -- so I can get a handle on costs bid.

This is an 850 sq ft condo on Maui. Ceilings are 8-foot. Kitchen and baths are OK. Just remove and paint LR, hallway and BR w/dressing room. Ground floor unit.

I've had one bid that seems ridiculous. He estimates 5-6 days of work. He would resurface with 'orange peel' and paint two coats. (Do I *want* another texture?)

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You will NEED another texture to hide the drywall seams.

I got 900+ square feet done (2 bedrooms and great room), one of them vaulted to 14', in just under two days including skip troweling the finish. It was a crew of three.

They spend most of the first day just taping up plastic, but they got the 2 bedrooms scraped and troweled. Day 2 was mostly the great room finishing, skip troweling and cleanup.

I painted - adding paint would have been one more day, because the texture was not dry on day 2.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2011 at 8:23PM
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We are removing our popcorn ceilings ourselves. We then hire a drywall guy to come in and smooth them out. For the last section that we did (a living room, small study, and entrance hall) it took three days for the drywall alone. My husband removed the popcorn himself after work in two days, so that could probably be condensed into a full day with prep. Add in a coat of primer and a coat of ceiling paint (with drying time in between) and yes ... I can see 5-6 days being reasonable.

As for texture, what we found is that it is personal and also somewhat regional. Orange-peel may be common in new construction in your area, or what your drywaller is used to doing. We wanted smooth, and that's what we have. You don't have to have a texture; a good drywall guy will make those ceilings look great.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2011 at 2:28PM
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Thanks to you both!

The one quote I have is $2800. (Remember, this is Maui! lol)

    Bookmark   July 17, 2011 at 6:36PM
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Not sure how I missed this post...I practically live on this site when not scraping popcorn and removing wallpaper. I sat down just now while taking a break.

I would like to offer my services for the price of a ticket to Maui, my favorite place on this earth! If I lived on Maui, I would do it for free to thank you for all the outstanding advice you offered on the buying/selling forum.

I did the 1140 sq ft home I am selling. Removing the popcorn was no biggee (no asbestos). Then I paid a contractor friend to come over and texture the first room and figure out if I was "trainable". We practiced different textures on old drywall and then I started in the most inconspicuous room and he would critique me and coach my technique.

Turns out, you just never know what you are good at until ya try it. I actually ended up enjoying it and am pretty efficient.

Which is going to come in very handy at my new house: 1900 sq. ft. of popcorn and wallpaper. Oh how I wish it was on Maui instead of in drought-ridden, 105 degree West Texas!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2011 at 2:16PM
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You should have your popcorn ceiling tested for asbestos. Ours had it and it is from the late 70s. They were using this into the 1980s; see link. Our state requires full decontamination (a shower station was put up in our backyard) for all workers and multiple safety regs for it.

If your ceiling doesn't have asbestos, it's no big deal. Do it yourself or hire it. It is far easier to remove if someone has not come along and painted over it.

If it does contain asbestos, you really need to think twice about doing it yourself. A papermask is not going to cut it! We had contractors offer to remove it for us "under the table" but we didn't want any floating around to breathe later. We also wanted paperwork showing we'd removed it properly if we ever sell the home.

One thing we did that we regretted was have the same company do the retexturing and painting as did the decontam. Their painting subs were nothing amazing and I think charged a lot more because they were with the removal people. They have to put two layers of plastic up and they take the first one down after the asbestos is out. Have them leave the 2nd layer up for your own contractors and you'd be happier.

Here is a link that might be useful: asbestos Q&A

    Bookmark   August 3, 2011 at 12:39PM
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cattyles -- How's it going? I think of you, slaving away on your new house, when the TV weatherman tells us we are so much better off in Chicago than y'all in Texas.

colorfast -- Thank you for your concern. The condo was built in 1991. Many other units in our complex have removed the popcorn, so I'm pretty sure we are in the clean about asbestos.

Hey! Although I'm too dense to know how to post a photo, I can show you the condo in question: www.vrbo.com/8049 Do you still think my bid is reasonable? Not a LOT of ceiling there.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2011 at 1:55PM
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