How to Remove Popcorn Ceiling (and Then Fix the Damage You Caused)
1) Test it. It may have asbestos. If so, you have my condolences -- looks like you're stuck with it (unless you cover it with new drywall).
2) Use some sort of sprayer to get it wet. Really wet.
3) Let it sit and soak for a bit.
4) Use a putty knife (or if you're fancy, a plastic scraper made specifically for scraping popcorn off ceilings) to scrape off the popcorn.
If your drywall was primed before it was popcorned, removal is pretty easy. Messy and tedious, but easy.
If your drywall was NOT primed, however...
In my case (because I'm just lucky, I guess), large chunks of paper peeled away with the popcorn. If this happens to you, here's the remedy:
1) Prime the drywall with RX-35, a primer that repairs and seals damaged drywall. It dries kind of tacky, so it helps keep the damaged paper from bubbling up during the next steps.
2) Skim coat the entire surface with some slightly-watered-down joint compound and a 12" taping knife.
4) If necessary, repeat steps 2 and 3. Then prime, paint, and enjoy!
You can read the full story on my blog.
Bonnie Morris on Apr 15, 2018
House built in the early 70s. Of course, all ceilings are covered with that ugly popcorn coating! Working on the half bath and decided that I have had it with that ceiling. Got all the popcorn off yesterday so apparently not painted; but of course, I now have holes since it wasn't primed either! Tried patching with some drywall compound but think I need to prime it all before I go any further. Thank you for the comments on this.
Bonnie Morris on Feb 15, 2020
This is the beadboard from Lowes. Great overlap and very thin. Have to apply glue and brad nail to the studs. Because they are only 4 feet long, I am able to do it myself.