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Home > > Can You Wallpaper Over Wallpaper

Can You Wallpaper Over Wallpaper

Can You Wallpaper Over Wallpaper? A Guide to Wallpapering Over Existing Wallpaper

Wallpapering over existing wallpaper can be a time-saving and efficient way to update the look of a room. However, without proper preparation, the final result may appear subpar. It is essential to have a good understanding of the wallpapering process and carefully assess whether wallpapering over existing wallpaper is the right choice. This article will explore the considerations to ponder before proceeding and provide guidance on preparing old wallpaper for the application of new wallpaper.

Understanding the key skills involved in wallpapering is crucial for ensuring the longevity and quality of the new wallpaper when covering existing wallpaper. Despite possessing these skills, it is important to evaluate whether this approach is suitable for the specific situation. This article will address the essential questions to contemplate before commencing the wallpapering process and offer advice on preparing the old wallpaper to ensure a successful outcome.

Can you wallpaper over wallpaper? Yes, but it's not as simple as you think

The short answer is yes, but there are several factors to consider before proceeding. First, assess the current wallpaper on the wall to determine if it's fit for purpose. If it's vinyl wallpaper, it's best to strip it off and start again. If it's severely damaged, ripped, or peeling, it's best to get rid of it.

If there is more than one layer of wallpaper on the wall, it's typically best to strip back to bare walls. However, if only a few corners are peeling, you can repair them with a specialist adhesive such as Solvite ready-mixed wallpaper repair adhesive from B&Q.

Generally, wallpaper does not need a primer. However, if you have vinyl wallpaper that you don't want to remove, you could paint with a primer to give a surface that new wallpaper can adhere to. If you decide to paint over wallpaper, you will need a primer.

Finally, consider if it's easier to remove the wallpaper and start again. If you're unsure about the state of your current wallpaper, it's best to remove the old wallpaper and start afresh.

Here are some key factors to consider before wallpapering over wallpaper:

Consideration Details
Type of wallpaper If it's vinyl wallpaper, it's best to strip it off and start again.
Condition of wallpaper If it's severely damaged, ripped, or peeling, it's best to get rid of it.
Number of layers If there is more than one layer of wallpaper on the wall, it's typically best to strip back to bare walls.
Repair options If only a few corners are peeling, you can repair them with a specialist adhesive such as Solvite ready-mixed wallpaper repair adhesive from B&Q.
Primer Generally, wallpaper does not need a primer, but if you have vinyl wallpaper that you don't want to remove, you could paint with a primer to give a surface that new wallpaper can adhere to.
Start afresh If you're unsure about the state of your current wallpaper, it's best to remove the old wallpaper and start afresh.

In conclusion, wallpapering over wallpaper is possible, but it's important to carefully assess the current wallpaper and take the necessary steps to ensure a successful outcome.

How to Hang New Wallpaper Over Old Wallpaper

Before hanging new wallpaper over old wallpaper, it is important to properly prepare the old wallpaper. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Inspect the old wallpaper for any damage or peeling edges. If there is any damage, it is recommended to remove the old wallpaper before hanging new wallpaper.
  • Clean the old wallpaper with warm water and soap to remove any dirt or debris. Rinse the wallpaper with clean water and allow it to dry completely.
  • Sand the old wallpaper lightly with fine-grit sandpaper to create a textured surface that will allow the new wallpaper to adhere properly.
  • Apply a wallpaper primer to the old wallpaper to ensure that the new wallpaper will stick properly and prevent any old wallpaper patterns or colours from showing through the new wallpaper.

By following these steps, you can successfully hang new wallpaper over old wallpaper and achieve a professional-looking finish.

1. Check the Wall

Before starting to wallpaper over existing wallpaper, it is important to check the wall for any obstructions, holes, and loose plaster. Any protruding nails and screws should be removed to prevent them from ripping the new wallpaper. If there are any holes present, they should be filled with patching plaster or a general-purpose interior filler like Tetrion All Purpose Powder Filler available from Amazon.

In case of loose plaster, a Stanley knife should be used to gently cut through the wallpaper and plaster around the affected area. The loose plaster can then be removed with a filling knife or similar tool. A stiff brush should be used to remove any loose debris, and the area should be filled, allowed to dry, and then rubbed down.

By checking the wall beforehand, one can ensure that the wallpapering process goes as smoothly as possible, and the finished product looks neat and professional.

2. Seal up seams

To ensure a smooth and even wallpaper surface, it is essential to identify and repair any raised seams or loose corners. A wallpaper repair adhesive and a seam roller like the ProDec Rosewood Seam Roller from Amazon can help fix these issues. For bubbles in the wallpaper, a sharp knife can be used to create a small slit, repair adhesive can be applied underneath, and then rolled flat with the seam roller. Any excess adhesive can be wiped off with a damp cloth.

3. Clean Walls

Once you have completed the previous two steps, the walls need to be given a final clean. Begin by using a stiff brush to brush down the walls from top to bottom. Next, prepare a sugar soap solution in a bucket and use a sponge to wipe down the walls. Allow the walls to dry completely before proceeding. For more tips and hints, refer to our comprehensive guide on What is sugar soap.

What is the Quickest Way to Remove Old Wallpaper?

Removing old wallpaper can be a daunting task, but there are several ways to make it easier and quicker. Here are some tips to help you remove old wallpaper quickly:

  • Use a wallpaper steamer: A wallpaper steamer is a device that uses hot water to soften the glue on the wallpaper, making it easier to remove. Simply hold the steamer against the wallpaper for a few seconds, and then use a scraper to remove the wallpaper.
  • Apply wallpaper stripper: Wallpaper stripper is a chemical solution that dissolves the glue on the wallpaper, making it easier to remove. Apply the solution to the wallpaper, let it sit for a few minutes, and then use a scraper to remove the wallpaper.
  • Score the wallpaper: Scoring the wallpaper involves using a scoring tool to create small holes in the wallpaper. This allows the wallpaper stripper to penetrate the wallpaper more easily, making it easier to remove.
  • Use a combination of methods: Using a combination of methods can be the quickest way to remove old wallpaper. For example, you can use a wallpaper steamer to remove the top layer of wallpaper, and then apply wallpaper stripper to remove the remaining glue.

By following these tips, you can remove old wallpaper quickly and easily. For more information on removing wallpaper, check out our complete guide to removing wallpaper.

Do I Need a Primer to Paint Over Wallpaper?

The type of wallpaper will determine whether a primer is needed when painting over wallpaper. If the wallpaper is vinyl or heavily patterned, applying a primer before adding a top coat is recommended. This is because the primer helps to create a smooth surface, allowing the topcoat to adhere better, and prevents the pattern from showing through.

Zinsser Wallpaper Cover-Up paint, available on Amazon, is an all-in-one primer that covers strong wallpaper prints, blocks stains, and makes a great base coat. It is an excellent option for those looking to paint over wallpaper without removing it.

If the wallpaper is lining paper, Anaglypta, or similar and has been previously painted, it is possible to prep and emulsion over it if the colour contrast is not too great. In this case, a primer may not be necessary.

Overall, applying a primer when painting over wallpaper is recommended for the best results, especially when dealing with vinyl or heavily patterned wallpaper.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is it Advisable to Apply New Wallpaper Over Existing Wallpaper?

Applying new wallpaper over existing wallpaper is possible, but it is not always advisable. It is important to ensure that the old wallpaper is in good condition and that it is not peeling or bubbling. Additionally, if the existing wallpaper is textured or embossed, it may be difficult to achieve a smooth finish with the new wallpaper. In some cases, it may be better to remove the old wallpaper before applying the new wallpaper.

How Can One Determine if Existing Wallpaper is of the Vinyl Variety?

To determine if existing wallpaper is of the vinyl variety, one can try to peel off a corner of the wallpaper. If the wallpaper comes off in one piece, it is likely vinyl. However, if the wallpaper tears or leaves bits behind, it is not vinyl.

What are the Implications of Wallpapering Over Painted Lining Paper?

Wallpapering over painted lining paper is possible, but it is important to ensure that the lining paper is in good condition and that it is not peeling or bubbling. Additionally, the painted surface should be clean and free of any dirt or debris. Wallpapering over painted lining paper may result in a thicker finish, which could affect the appearance of the room.

Is it Possible to Cover Embossed Wallpaper with a New Layer?

It is possible to cover embossed wallpaper with a new layer, but it may be difficult to achieve a smooth finish. The new wallpaper may not adhere properly to the embossed surface, which could result in a bumpy or uneven appearance. In some cases, it may be better to remove the embossed wallpaper before applying the new wallpaper.

What Methods Exist for Concealing Old Wallpaper Without Removing it?

One method for concealing old wallpaper without removing it is to apply a coat of wallpaper primer over the existing wallpaper. This will create a smooth surface for the new wallpaper to adhere to. Another method is to apply a textured wallpaper over the existing wallpaper, which can help to hide any imperfections.

Can Removable Wallpaper be Effectively Applied Over a Current Wallpaper Installation?

Removable wallpaper can be effectively applied over a current wallpaper installation, but it is important to ensure that the existing wallpaper is in good condition and that it is not peeling or bubbling. Additionally, the removable wallpaper should be applied carefully to avoid any air bubbles or wrinkles.

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