Home Repair

Wallpaper in Kitchen that Will NOT come off

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In the kitchen there is a wallpaper on the walls which must be as old as our home is (27 yrs). Nothing we have tried has removed the paper. Any suggestions on how to get if off? OR can we mud over this wallpaper with joint compound or some kind of compound to make smooth walls??? If so what kind of compound would be best and what kind of primer would be best to use in the kitchen. Thanks!
Hi Maria,
Welcome to the Repair-place!

First things first -- What is the material of the wallpaper in the kitchen, and what have you tried to get the "paper" off?

Will you be looking to repaint or to repaper?

IF you will be repainting, will some amount of texture be OK, or will you be looking for "perfect" walls? What kind of paint will you be using? The glossier the finish, the more imperfections will be seen, but the more "washable" the walls will be.

If you will be repapering, it really doesn't matter much unless you're going with some weird surface like reflective foil. Very Happy
Hi Ron! thank you for the welcome!

Ok here's what I know...I don't have a clue what kind of paper the wallpaper is. We can't get more than a tiny piece off at a time. We've tried scoring it and spraying it with water, we've tried scoring it and using ...oh I can't remember the name of the stuff...it's in a spray bottle and a blue gel...and we've tried steam. Nothing and I mean nothing will get this paper off. I don't know what else to try.

I want to repaint and add a wallpaper border at the top only. No more full wall wallpaper for me.

Yes some texture is fine. As for perfect walls...I'd need a pro and my hubby and I are Do-it-ourselfers when at all possible. I have purchased Behr Kitchen and Bath paint in a Satin finish which isn't very glossy. I don't care for high gloss paint. A friend told us we need to use Kiltz in the kitchen for primer....is this correct? On the ceiling in the kitchen we used Kiltz, but walls too?
Try the chemical wall paper stripper again. I've used DIF and it comes in a concentrate you mix with warm tap water into quart spray bottles. Buy the spray bottle there. If you were doing a huge job, I'd recommend a garden sprayer.

Assuming the "paper" isn't waterproof vinyl, this method really should work.

Work in a small area. Soak the paper. Keep it wet for a full 20 minutes. Not just damp--wet. That means re-apply as needed. If it dries out, you've wasted your time. Especially when the heat is on and the air is dry, and even more so if there's a register blowing hot dry air on the walls. Very Happy

The point is..... keep it soaking wet. I've tried doing it in less than 20 minutes, and by keeping it just damp. No luck. I was yelled at by TheGuru, he told me: "20 minutes, soaking wet! Re-apply as needed to keep it soaking wet for 20 minutes." Eventually I got it.

If it's vinyl and it is too thin so you can't pull it off, you'll need to get a wallpaper slicer. This device when run all over your walls slices the wallpaper to allow the glue softener to get behind and release the glue.
This is a very thin paper. Where would I get a wallpaper slicer? I have a round wallpaper scorer? It doesnt work at all. That's what I used was the DIF but already mixed. We'll try the concentrate and soak the areas for 20 mins. Thanks Ron! Will let you how it turns out.
You still dilute the concentrate according to directions! You probably shouldn't use it full strength.

If you had PAPER wallpaper, scoring/slicing it was probably not the best thing to do; it may make your removal job more difficult.

Again, work in small sections and keep it wet! Very Happy

Ron wrote:
You still dilute the concentrate according to directions! You probably shouldn't use it full strength.

Again, work in small sections and keep it wet! Very Happy

KEEP IT WET!!! for at LEAST 20 mins. sometimes it takes a little longer for the enzymes to attack and soften the glue. But you must keep it wet.

Use HOT water. as hot as you can get out of the tap. (don't use tea kettle water, you could burn yourself)

Work a small manageable area at a time. Like 1 wall. Because if you start to scrape the paper off and the other part dries you have to start over in that area. You could as you start scraping wet the next area, but keep an eye on it (or have a helper!!) so it wont dry out!!

You don't need to 'spray' it on, you could use a big sponge but it is easier in my opinion to use some sort of sprayer. there is one that costs about $4.00 at Home Depot that works well with hot water. The cheapo ones will give you a hard time with the hot solution.

After 20 - 30 mins use a 2 or 3 inch putty knife to slide the paper off the wall!
Ok we were using cold water....probably our problem. We'll be heading to Home Depot tomorrow to get the necessary items we need for both this project and the bathroom. Again thanks so much to the both of you for all your help and suggestions. Like the bathroom...I'll let you know the out come!

Merry Christmas Guys!


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