the painted surface
These are some general painting questions that are often asked. We hope the answers will help you during your home painting projects. You may ask us a paint related question by contacting us.
The wallpaper stripper is not soaking through the wallpaper when I try to remove wallpaper?
A good quality wallpaper will be coated with vinyl for durability and to make it washable. Vinyl coated wallpaper is great until you want to remove the paper. The vinyl coating prevents moisture from penetrating the surface that would soften the paste and loosen the wallpaper. If you can keep the paper wet for a long enough period of time it will finally loosen but this may take several hours before the stripper penetrates the vinyl. One solution is to use what is known as a “Paper Tiger”. This wallpaper removal tool which can be found at most paint dealers and home improvement stores perforates the paper allowing the stripper to penetrate and dissolve the paste. The depth of scoring is adjustable for use on different thicknesses or multiple layers of wallpaper. If not used carefully it can cause some drywall damage leaving small holes in the surface which will probably require patching before painting the wall. Another solution is to sand the wallpaper with a coarse grit sandpaper to score the vinyl layer. You can use a hand sander as pictured in the photo or a vibrator sander. The hand sander pictured uses a half sheet of sandpaper. One sheet should be enough to sand an average size room. The amount of sanding required will depend on the type of paper and the strength of the wallpaper stripper. The sandpaper should be 36 or 40 grit size. Do the sanding on dry walls before any of the surfaces are wet. The many scratches caused by the sanding will allow the stripper to penetrate very quickly. Having used both methods I believe the sandpaper is quicker and more efficient.
Why are my deck boards splitting?
Decks are exposed to sun, rain, snow, dew, foot traffic, occasional cleaning, sliding deck furniture and whatever else may find its way to the surface of the boards. But the most damage is probably caused by the sun. The ultra-violet rays slowly break down the wood fibers. The photo shows how the boards shaded from the sun by the fence are in better condition than the others. The fence runs along the southern side of the deck. Here in the northern hemisphere the deck boards near the fence have spent their days in the shade. The entire deck was regularly protected with a solid color stain but the boards exposed to the daily sun show much more wear than the section of deck boards that were always shaded. The pigment of solid color stains will protect the wood better than semi-transparent or clear finishes but nothing is perfect. Wood constantly exposed to the harsh rays of the sun will sooner or later begin to weather, break down and split. Other than covering the deck with a roof, regularly using a high quality solid color stain will protect the deck boards as much as possible. Even after 20 years the deck boards protected from the sunlight by the fence on the right (the southern side) show very little weathering or splitting.
How do I clean and paint over walls after the wallpaper is removed?
If the wallpaper has been removed there may still be adhesive on the walls and this should be completely removed. If adhesive is painted over it will react with the new paint or primer and soon cause the paint to peel. This may not happen immediately, it could take a few weeks or months. It develops something like a brittle crusty look which usually is easy to sand smooth. Wash the spot to remove any adhesive residue. Depending on how bad it is it may need to be skimmed over with spackling and sanded before repainting. After removing wallpaper from previously painted or primed walls I wash the walls using warm water and wallpaper adhesive remover mixing them according to the maker's instructions. Sponge on the solution in sections keeping the wall wet, as the adhesive softens use a coarse plastic scrubbing pad to loosen and remove most of the adhesive, then rinse with clean water and dry the wall with an old absorbent terry cloth or similar type clean towel. The coarse plastic scrub pad really helps, I use the ones sold for use with chemical paint strippers. They are sometimes referred to as heavy duty stripping pads.
If the walls were not primed or painted before the wallpaper was hung the process is the same but you'll have to be careful not to damage the drywall and sometimes it just can't be helped. Because bare drywall or sheetrock is very porous and should always be primed and/or painted before hanging wallpaper the adhesive will have soaked into the non-painted surface making it and the wallpaper more difficult to remove. Here you may need to to use a less coarse scrub pad or less pressure while scrubbing to lessen the chance of scarring the bare drywall.
Once the adhesive is removed I would wait at least a day to allow the walls to dry then painting can be started depending on the surface. Bare drywall should be primed with drywall primer and then painted. Painted surfaces can be primed or painted depending on the condition of the walls. If there is drywall damage I have found it best to prime those spots before and after the patching.
More helpful painting tips, techniques and how-to articles can be found by following these links:
Pantone 2016 Color of the Year ◊ Sherwin-Williams 2016 Color of the Year ◊ How To Paint a Room ◊ How To Paint a Stairway ◊ How To Paint a Two-Story Room ◊ How To Choose Colors ◊ Six Step Color Choice ◊ Popular Color Ideas ◊ How To Choose Paint ◊ Tools ◊ How To Caulk ◊ How To Patch a Hole ◊ How To Patch a Crack ◊ How To Cut In a Wall or Ceiling ◊ How To Roll a Wall or Ceiling ◊ How To Paint Woodwork ◊ How To Paint a Window ◊ How To Paint Baseboard ◊ How To Paint a Door ◊ How To Paint Crown Moulding ◊ How To Paint Kitchen Cabinets ◊ How To Choose a Premium Paintbrush ◊ How To Paint a MDF Bookcase ◊ How To Paint Aluminum or Vinyl Siding ◊ How To Paint Over Faux Finishes ◊ How To Use Magnetic Paint ◊ How To Use FrogTape ◊ How To Paint Repair Water Damaged Drywall ◊ Hiring a Contractor ◊ Paint Stripper Safety ◊ Painting Louvered Shutters ◊ 2013 Color Trends ◊ Choosing Front Door Colors
More details about specific painting subjects are covered in the additional articles. In those will be found details, painting tips and techniques gathered from over 20 years of painting experience. Here is a list of links to the articles: