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Painting & Decorating

Best way to strip walls

starting to renovate a lage cottage and need to stip all the papper off the wall some are a few layers thick, is it best to buy steam stipper or to just use water to wet the walls, help its taking ages to get the papper off,

9 Answers from MyBuilder Painters & Decorators

Best Answer

The use of a steam stripper is not only going to take for ever but because the property is old it will blow the plaster causing more work to do.... get your self a pump garden sprayer, makes short work of paper striping!! score the paper if its been painted then soak the walls (warm water) and leave them for around 45 min.
Try to remove the paper, if its stubborn repeat the process!
Might also be a good recommendation to some of the decorators on mybuilder.. I was told this by a decerator with 40 years experiance and I haven't looked back since!! why boil in all that steam ;-)


Answered 13th Apr 2011

Never use a steam stripper as it causes all sorts of problems,i have been decorating for 20 years and only used a steam stripper a handfull of times.Soak the walls with warm water and a small amount of fairy liquid in it,when you have soaked the walls leave them for 5 mins and see how the paper is coming off,if it is still a bit tricky coming off soak again.


Answered 2nd May 2011

You can use a steamer, if its stubborn you may have to score the paper.
You can also soak the paper.
To make it easier to scrape of, get your self a long handled scraper, the type that takes replaceable blades, the blades are about 150mm long and near razor sharp.
All the good sheds sell them in the decorating section, about £10 with free spare blades.
If you use steamer and some plaster comes away, dont worry as it will have been loose anyway, if its just the top coat (skim) then just pva and plaster back over.


Answered 13th Apr 2011

i would never use a steamer on old plaster unless you are willing to fork out to have the walls skim coated just plenty of hot soapy water and sweat good luck


Answered 16th Apr 2011

Use hot water with a little bit of washing up liquid in it , let the water do the work , put plenty on using a flat brush and keep soaking it. After half an hour it will start to move. Just keep soaking it .


Answered 30th Apr 2011

steam strippers are a waste of time, you need a long handled scraper to get the top layers off and a bucket of water, large brush and a normal scraper for the backing paper.


Answered 28th Apr 2011

Hi there , yeah probably be good idea investing in a steam stripper the only possible negative point is if its a really old building the heat of the stripper might take some of the plaster off but at least you should manage to get the paper off quicker
good luck
David King Painters


Answered 13th Apr 2011

Hi what i would do is use a good quality steam stripper but taking care not to hold the steam plate on the wall for too long as this will blow your plaster work and couse you more expence to have the room re skimmed so patience is the key but you will acheve your goal.
regards whiteheads paint 2 paper


Answered 13th Apr 2011


Just lots of warm water in a bucket and a sponge and wet the paper repeat until it comes off easy. A good strong scarper. And just keep at it until you achieve what you want. Steamers are ok but they take to long I believe. But if you're going to use one don't keep it in one position to plaster may come off .

David Sylvester
High Light Decorators


Answered 6th Feb 2017

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