How To Remove Wallpaper and Old Borders

It is time to update the look of your home and the first thing to go, should be that faded wallpaper with a really boring and old-fashioned print! There can be many other reasons for removing your old wallpaper and borders; the ‘why' is not as important as the ‘how'. If you've finally decided upon getting rid of the wallpaper and borders, here's how you need to do it.

Step 1

Precaution. While removing wallpaper and old borders, it is important to remember to take them off cleanly, unless you don't mind damaging the underlying paint or wall, since you're going to overhaul them anyway! However, in most instances, you might not want to take on the cost and effort of redoing all the walls in your home, so be careful when you're peeling off all the old wallpaper and borders.

Step 2

Water. Spray water along the edges and lines of the wallpaper and borders and wait for the water to seep in and loosen up the paper. Once a sufficient amount of time has passed, you can use a plastic scraper to remove bits and pieces of the soggy paper as it comes off the wall. Make sure to use the scraper gently, you do not want to damage the paint or the wall underneath.

Step 3

Steam. This works well for paper and borders that are more firmly fixed and are waterproof. You can use a steamer or a moderately hot iron, which will help in melting and loosening the wallpaper paste or glue, which, is water-resistant. As always, exercise caution to avoid damage to your walls.

Step 4

Vinegar. You can use white vinegar as an alternative to water in step 2. Dampen the wallpaper with enough white vinegar, such that soaks into the paper and dissolves the glue. Then, gently scrape off the paper using a plastic scraper.

Step 5

Commercial solvents. Check with your local hardware or paint store for commercially sold products that are very effective on removing wallpaper and old borders. Follow the instructions listed on the product label and you will find that removing the wallpaper and borders is really easy and safe. The formulation of these solvents, help in dissolving wallpaper paste easier and you don't even need to use a scraper to remove the paper!

The standard way to remove wallpaper and old borders is to start at the lower ends first, and work your way upwards to the higher levels. If the walls in your home are high, you may need to use a ladder or climber to assist you in reaching the higher portions. Also, remember to immediately soak up and wipe away any spills, so that the underlying painted wall remains undamaged.


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