How to Paint Over Wallpaper
LESLIE: Now we’re talking to Brenda in Alabama who finds The Money Pit on WRJM. And you’ve had a wallpaper accident?
BRENDA: Well, yes, you could say that. I decided to remove some wallpaper from my kitchen. And from the design, I would assume it’s been there for many, many long years. And despite my efforts to be careful, there were places where the top layer of the sheetrock would come off with the wallpaper …
BRENDA: … exposing a gray underneath.
TOM: That’s not good.
LESLIE: So there was no paper liner. Because usually when you put up wallpaper, there’s a liner that goes up first and then the wallpaper goes up.
BRENDA: I – you know, that was- it was not my wallpaper. It was a purchased home …
BRENDA: … that came with this really ugly wallpaper. I have an idea if I try to paint over it it’s just going to soak the paint up.
TOM: Well, it may not soak the paint up. It’s not that the walls are going to be soaked with paint. But what’s going to happen is you’re going to have a very uneven surface. You have to even that out. So what we would recommend you do is spackle over the areas – almost float those areas with drywall compound where the paper has been pulled apart. And then I think it’s going to be critically important for you to prime these walls. What do you think, Leslie?
LESLIE: It’s really important to prime it because you need to set a nice surface for whatever you’re going to put on top of it; whether it’s paint or new wallpaper again. You really need to make sure that you have a good base; otherwise, whatever you put on isn’t going to stick. So go with a good primer like a KILZ and that should really do the trick.
BRENDA: Sure. OK, thank you very much.
TOM: You’re welcome, Brenda. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.