How can i get wallpaper off the walls w/o damaging the drywall?

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In the Bathroom and den. It's been up for about 20 years. None of the products at home hepot have worked.

  9 answers
  • Sometimes damage to the drywall is unavoidable. You really need to use the scoring tool a LOT, the more holes for the steam to get in the better and steam, steam steam. If you have a humidifier - this is the time to crank that baby up full blast, preferably with doors closed to get the walls good and wet. Then it will be much easier to remove, hopefully with less damage to the drywall.
  • B. Enne B. Enne on Sep 16, 2017
    Try using a steamer.
    Alternatively, use a Papertiger and score the paper. Spray with very warm water with liquid fabric softener mixed in. Let sit, a few minutes and begin peeling where it has been scored. Sometimes the wallpaper separates from the backing paper. If that's the case, spray again, wait a few minutes and peel. I sometimes use a plastic drywall mudding/putty knife. I always use FS and water, and have removed paper from the 20's with it.
  • Kay27246977 Kay27246977 on Sep 16, 2017
    soak a rag in warm water mixed with fabric softener and dab it on the wall. The wallpaper should peel right off
  • 62q10370829 62q10370829 on Sep 16, 2017
    Fabric softener with water in sprayer & spray wallpaper & let set a few minutes & use putty knife (shapen it) & scrape off. I just cut the wall paper lightly so the stuff could get behind it. Do small arears at a time then wash wall with finger & water then soap & water. The softener & water I thank was 1-1. Look on Google for homemade wall remover.
  • Peggy Peggy on Sep 17, 2017
    Try fabric softener
  • Sjt29229935 Sjt29229935 on Sep 17, 2017
    Sorry I don't have a terrific suggestion as to removing the old wallpaper, but boy did I discover a fantastic way to get the paste off. I was having some repair wok done to the walls in my kitchen before rewallpapering. I was dreading the tedious process of removing the old paste. Well, I was chatting with the gentleman doing the wallboard patching and happened to notice how squeaky clean the wall was where he was working. I asked him what he had done to accomplish such a feat. He said it was the all purpose wallboard mud that worked the miracle. Sure enough, he would put it on and let it sit for about 10 minutes then run his trowel up the wall and the old paste and residue zipped right off slicker than all get out. Well, my husband picked up a bucket of premixed mud and in no time my walls were clean as a whistle and ready for the new wallpaper. I did go over the walls with a bleach and water solution, then rinsed them just to be sure there wouldn't be a reaction with the new paste and mud residue. In years past I used all the other wallpaper paste removers on the market, but nothing can hold a candle to the ease of that all purpose wallboard mud. Good luck getting the paper off, but at least, once you do, this tip should help expedite the rest of your project. Heck, I would be tempted to try a little of it on the wallpaper. Never know, might even work a miracle there too.
  • Sjt29229935 Sjt29229935 on Sep 17, 2017
    Slight correction.....instead of calling it wallboard mud, a better term might be all purpose drywall mud. Also, I used a 3-4" wide putty knife to slide the mud and paste off the wall. Had an old bucket I didn't want to keep that I put paste into and scraped knife on the edge. Tried using one of those little trays the drywallers use but it was full in no time and emptying it got old in a hurry. The bucket worked much better.
  • Sharon Sharon on Sep 17, 2017
    I lay plastic down on the floor up to the baseboards and tape it in place. Then I use hot water and a car sponge with fabric softner. Make sure you score it with the tool really well. Sometimes you just can't prevent wall damage. Its easy to skim coat the walls with joint compound afterwards compared to getting that darn paper off sometimes.
    • Sharon Sharon on Sep 17, 2017
      Ophs forgot to say I leave the fabric softner sit on the wall for 20 mins, then reapply and wait another 20 mins.
  • Emily Emily on Sep 17, 2017
    If the drywall was not properly prepared when the paper was put on, Es might really have a hard time separating the wall paper from the drywall.