November 3, 2020

Preparing Walls For Painting After Wallpaper Removal: What To Do and How To Paint?

Preparing Walls For Painting After Wallpaper Removal: What To Do and How To Paint?

It’s time to deal with those outdated, wallpapered walls. From learning all about how to paint over wallpapered walls to how to prep walls for painting after removing wallpaper, our experts at Oahu Pro Painters have the answers.

Stripping Wallpaper to Paint Walls

Preparing wallpapered walls for painting requires fully removing the wallpaper, but stripping wallpaper to paint walls can feel like a daunting task. However, with the right tools and knowledge, you can have that old wallpaper off your walls in no time.

First, you need to start by preparing your space. Remove all decor, curtains, and outlet covers, and tape plastic to the baseboard of your wall to protect floors. Additionally, purchase a drop cloth to further protect your space and make cleanup easier.

Next, you’ll want to test the wallpaper’s adhesion by starting at the corner and peeling the wallpaper off the wall. If it doesn’t pull at the drywall beneath, you may be able to simply pull off the wallpaper.

If it’s not coming off smoothly, you’ll need to make a solution using liquid stripper concentrate and hot water, which you will then spray on the wall to make the wallpaper come off easier.

How to Prep Wall for Painting After Removing Wallpaper?

After removing wallpaper, the walls may be in need of some repair before applying paint. To get started, you’ll need some basic tools, including sand paper and a hand sander, drywall mud, and a putty knife to get your walls smooth and ready for paint.

Preparing walls for painting after wallpaper removal begins with repairs

First, you need to repair any gouges or holes in the wall that have resulted from removing the wallpaper. Using your putty knife and drywall mud, fill in the holes and let them dry.

Now it’s time to sand the walls, removing paste and debris from the wall. Let’s break it down.

Removing Wallpaper Paste From Painted Walls

To ensure your walls look smooth and even with a fresh coat of paint, it’s important to take care when removing wallpaper paste from painted walls. To do this, you’ll need to sand the walls.

For smooth walls, use a hand sander and drywall sanding paper, smoothing over the rough areas that were repaired, while simultaneously sanding away at lingering paste or backing from the wallpaper. It’s always important to sand your walls, removing wallpaper glue to avoid that textured look once you paint for a high-quality finish.

Wash Walls After Removing Wallpaper Before Painting

Painting a wall that was wallpapered takes patience and care, and you’re not done after sanding.

Prepping a wall for painting after wallpaper removal involves cleaning the walls once the wallpaper is down. You must wash walls after removing wallpaper before painting, using warm water to clean any remaining debris.

If you skip this step, the dust from removing the wallpaper and sanding your walls will interfere with paint adhesion. Plus, this step will help prevent dust from getting around your home.

How to Paint Walls That Have Been Wallpapered?

All you have left to do before painting your walls is prime them. This will not only ensure your wall is smooth and ready for a beautiful new hue but will protect the drywall underneath.

Not ready to take on the task of fully removing wallpaper? There are some cases in which you can just paint over it, too. The steps for how to paint over wallpapered walls are simple if followed accordingly.

Before painting over wallpaper, you need to ensure there are no lifted edges. If there are rips or peels, the wallpaper must be fully removed.

Once you’ve determined the wallpaper is in good condition, prime the walls with an alkyd-based primer that will smooth the wallpaper so paint applies nicely. While this is the easier route, it’s not always the best long-term.


Whether you’re ready to take on the big project of removing wallpaper and then repainting walls, or are just looking to quickly paint over wallpaper, our experts at Oahu Pro Painters can help ensure your paint looks fresh and smooth.

Sign up for a free estimate online today, or call us at 808-468-5604

Written By:
Karl Van Zadnt

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