Scraping Popcorn - Dry Method

3 Hours
I am 10 months into a commitment to remove the popcorn from my ceilings room by room.
I have one very large ceiling left.
If you are interested in removing your popcorn ceilings and your ceilings have never been painted. This dry method may be for you.
You need a scraper, plastic drop cloths to cover your floors, large items you cannot remove and chandeliers or fans and a ladder. I cover my hair. I wear goggles and a respirator. The respirator is rated for asbestos but our house is too new for asbestos. I recommend an asbestos test before you begin.
Stand on the ladder quite close to the ceiling and gently scrape off the popcorn. The white stuff will fall to the ground. There will be some dust but it quickly settles. My ceilings were left with a light texture that is slightly different from orange peel texture. Be careful not to gouge the wall board.
Bathrooms and any water leaks may require some spackling with mud to repair. All of our bathrooms did.
Some of the ceilings required a coat of paint right away. The others look okay for the time being. I'll get to those later.
You can see how dirty the ceiling with popcorn looks. It looks so much better without even being painted.
This method is so much easier than using the water method. The damp popcorn is heavier and messier to clean up. If your ceilings haven't been painted this method may be for you. It is messy but I'd rather have a dry mess than a wet mess.

Katie Lloyd Mansfield
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

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  2 questions
  • Bea15941687 Bea15941687 on Dec 14, 2016
    And if they haven painted, what next?

  • Patty Sherman Main Patty Sherman Main on Sep 11, 2018

    after having popcorn removed (dry method) the ceiling was painted with a sprayer. I used ceiling hide all paint. The next day there were big places peeling all over the ceiling. Any idea what I did wrong?


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2 of 6 comments
  • Nancy Clark Nancy Clark on Sep 13, 2018

    So basically, u did the wet method

  • Bob29691774 Bob29691774 on Sep 13, 2018

    I'm using a powerful shop vav. Not a lot of mess and dust. But, it saves a lot of work, it looks wonderful. Make sure and use a mask like she said, I did not. Now I know how cats feel with hair balls. Ha Ha