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Removing very old wallpaper is a great way to redo your home and give it a more up-to-date look. It can be a very messy process if you are doing it independently. Learning the costs of such a project is important, especially if you are planning on hiring professional painters to do the job for you. In terms of a DIY project, removing very old wallpaper is the most frustrating! This is because of all the preparation it involves and the fact that it can get super messy. Fear not though, we will discuss how to remove wallpaper and the costs associated with such a project. 

Wallpaper Removal and Clean up with Home Painters Toronto

Materials to Use for Removing Very Old Wallpaper

Here is a list of the materials you will need to remove very old wallpaper. 

  1. Drop cloth
  2. Putty knife
  3. Razor knife
  4. Bucket
  5. Paint scraper
  6. Painter’s tape
  7. Safety goggles
  8. Sandpaper or wallpaper scoring tool
  9. Hot water
  10. Liquid stripper concentrate
  11. Steamer or pressure washer
  12. Fabric softener or vinegar

Protect Yourself

It is a natural feeling to want to start doing your work right away, but preparation is vital. Same thing goes for removing wallpaper.

Before beginning that process, you will need to protect your floor from unnecessary damage. Since you’ll be spraying water on your walls during the wallpaper removal process, use a painter’s plastic tarp on the floor with painter’s tape securing it in place.

In addition, covering all your electrical outlets present is of utmost importance. Leave the outlet cover in place and protect that entire area with painter’s tape. When the wallpaper is removed, go back to the outlet and take out the pieces under the outlet cover. 

Working Hard for a New Makeover

You will need to apply a hot water solution to make the wallpaper removal process easier for you. Most wallpaper are soluble than others, except for vinyl papers because they actually repel water.

In order to prepare yourself for any and all situations, you should invest in some inexpensive wallpaper scoring tool. A wallpaper scoring tool will slightly enter the outside layer of the wallpaper, which will allow the hot water solution to probe to the adhesive.

This will also begin the process of loosening the wallpaper hold on the wall. In a light manner, run the scoring tool on the entire wall. It is vital not to exhort too much pressure in the event that the scoring tool makes a hole through the paper and into the plaster.

This will cause you to exhort even more energy in fixing the mistake, rather than removing very old wallpaper, which is the main goal.

Mix the Hot Water Solution

Once you have completed running the wallpaper scoring tool over the entire surface, you are now ready to apply the hot water solution. There are two types of homemade wallpaper removal situation that can make this process a whole lot easier for you:

  • Solution #1: 1/3 vinegar to 2/3 hot water
  • Solution #2: 1/4 fabric softener to 3/4 hot water

Although both solutions will work for your wallpaper removal process, hot water is the key ingredient.

Regardless of what solution you decide to use, mix the hot water either using a kettle or tap water in a household pressure sprayer. With your electrical outlets and floor protected, you can begin the process of wetting the walls. You should wear safety goggles in order to protect your eyes from potentially being hit with water.

Also, have a garbage can nearby so that when the pieces of wallpaper start to peel, you can place it directly in there. Small preparation stuff like that, can help you save valuable time on cleanup tasks. Lastly, when all the pieces come falling down slowly, your painter’s trap will catch them, making your cleanup process even more easier.

Scrape off Wallpaper

Now is the time to use your pressure sprayer to apply hot water solution to your intended surface. For best results, you should wait two to three minutes for the solution to work successfully. Then, place your scraper in the corner of the wet wallpaper off in sheets. When large pieces come falling off, keep your garbage can handy. Continue working the entire surface while damp. Don’t be alarmed when some pieces of wallpaper dry up, making it difficult to take off. Just ignore it for now and focus on the wetter pieces. When most of the wet paper is removed, repeat the process so that all the paper is completely taken care of. You should follow this process: spray, wait, and scrape. 

Wallpaper Removal Cost

It is quite difficult to estimate the cost of wallpaper removal because it depends heavily on the condition of your wallpaper and walls. Generally speaking though, a simple removal can cost you $3-$5 per square foot. Most professional contractors, however, have a minimum fee when it comes to home renovation projects. At Home Painters Toronto, the minimum is $1,200

Wallpaper Removal – What’s The Process?

Redo Your Bathroom

Now that you’ve finished working on the walls in your living room or hallway, you can now probably work on your bathroom. Rather kill two birds with one stone, right? Maybe you need ceiling repairs? A new paint for your bathroom? The best thing is to prepare and research! Is this work you can do alone, or will you need the help of professional painters? Whichever route you decide to take, new trends are always on the rise! The choices are endless and it just depends on your particular style and personality!

Brian Young - Home Painters Toronto

From The Owner & Founder


Hello and welcome!

I’m both deeply honoured and flattered you are considering using our services.

Since 1987 when I was at York University simply earning my way through school, I’ve had the privilege to meet and work with thousands of amazing homeowners like yourself.

Besides the birth of my daughter, there is nothing more satisfying than seeing a homeowner’s life change when we have transformed their dream home into a masterpiece. For that reason, we take our jobs very seriously and are committed to our cause.

At Home Painters our mission is to paint homeowners’ dreams, and make your painting experience last a lifetime!
I look forward to hopefully meeting you one day, as it brings me tremendous joy to make homeowner’s dreams come true.



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