When I removed the previous owners' wallpaper from the lounge in my (then 6 year old) house I had a terrible time. The paper would not soak and seemed to dry out immediately it was wet, although I now suspect with hindsight that it was soaking straight into the plasterboard wall.
Consequently, removing the paper was a long & tedious process & virtually every bit had to be picked off with my fingernails as I was afraid of gouging the wall with any kind of tool. To my horror, the wall was virtually "dissolving" before my eyes and by the time all the paper was off the wall looked more like an old house than a new-ish build. I filled the damage as best I could, and once dry sanded it and then washed it down with sugar soap to remove paste residue and dust. The filler just washed straight out again! I re-filled & sanded again & was going to apply a diluted coat of PVA to stabilise it, but on the tin it said the PVA was unsuitable for use with emulsion paint - even though I'd seen this done on TV.
As I had carpets & furniture on order with delivery imminent I just went ahead and painted the walls as they were as most of them were covered by furniture.
I have now decided to re-decorate and would appreciate some advice about how to deal with my ‘moth-eaten’ walls which are starting to flake in a few places and what went wrong.
Incidentally, I also stripped off the wallpaper in the hall, stairs & landing which came off just as it should, top vinyl layer followed by backing paper in virtually one piece & not a mark on the walls!
Hi Fin, from what you are saying it sounds like they papered straight onto the plasterboard without plastering first which does sometimes happen these days. All due to costcutting, but it does make it difficult for people later on. Personally I would skim the walls. Then you have got nice new walls to work with and it will make things a lot easier in the future.
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