The Definitive Guide to Removing Old Peel and Stick Wallpaper

Why is peel and stick wallpaper so popular?

Peel and stick wallpaper has gained immense popularity in recent years due to its convenience and ease of use. It offers a quick and affordable way to transform any space without the need for professional installation. However, as time goes by, you may find yourself wanting to remove the wallpaper to update your decor or make a change. Many peel and stick wallpaper are removable, but some are not, and you can find yourself with a peel and stick that has stuck into your wall. So, how do you remove peel and stick wallpaper after a few years?

Prepare the necessary tools

Before you begin the removal process, gather the following tools:

  • Plastic scraper or putty knife
  • Heat gun or hairdryer
  • Adhesive remover or vinegar
  • Sponge or cloth
  • Water

Start with a corner

Begin by finding a corner of the wallpaper and gently peeling it back. Use the plastic scraper or putty knife to lift the edge if needed. Once you have a small section peeled back, slowly continue pulling the wallpaper off the wall. Be careful not to rush this step to avoid damaging the wall surface.

Apply heat

If the wallpaper is not coming off easily, you can use a heat gun or hairdryer to soften the adhesive. Hold the heat source a few inches away from the wallpaper and move it back and forth. The heat will help loosen the adhesive, making it easier to remove the wallpaper. Be cautious not to overheat the wallpaper or the wall surface.

Remove adhesive residue

After peeling off the wallpaper, you may notice some adhesive residue left on the wall. To remove it, use adhesive remover (recommended)  or vinegar. Apply the solution to the residue using a sponge or cloth and gently scrub until the adhesive is dissolved. Rinse the wall with clean water and allow it to dry completely before applying new wallpaper or paint.

Final tips and precautions

- Always test a small, inconspicuous area of the wall before applying heat or adhesive remover to ensure it doesn't damage the surface.

- Take your time during the removal process to avoid causing any damage to the wall.

- If the wallpaper has been on the wall for an extended period, it may leave behind stubborn residue. In such cases, you may need to repeat the removal process or seek professional assistance.

By following these steps, you can successfully remove peel and stick wallpaper after a few years. Remember to be patient and cautious throughout the process to achieve the best results. Whether you're looking to update your decor or simply change things up, removing peel and stick wallpaper is a manageable task that anyone can accomplish.


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  • Clare Martin

    It was interesting to learn that applying heat can help remove wallpaper that won’t come off easily since it softens the adhesive as long as we don’t overheat the wallpaper or the wall surface. I’m renovating my room before the year ends, so I need to get my old wallpaper removed since I’m thinking of putting up a new one. I’ll keep this in mind while I look for wallpaper removal specialists in Santa Monica to contact for help soon.

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