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I have a customer that is having me remodel their kitchen and it has a vinyl wallpaper they want taken off and the walls painted. I don't do a lot of wallpaper removal but I've done it before but nothing like this stuff. The first day I scored it and soaked the paper with a wallpaper remover but the outer layer is only coming off in little 1" wide strips no matter which direction I pull it. When I get it off the spots where it is scored the remover is only soaking in a area about 1/8" around the score so it's not penetrating. Then that evening I picked up a wallpaper steamer. It helped a lot but still the outer layer is very stubborn to come off.
 

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I've only done it on my own house, and that was enough to know I don't ever, ever want to do it again. The vinyl coating makes a bad job 20 times worse. I've tried most of what you mentioned, and it was still hell. The steamer seemed to work better if I perforated about 10x the amount I would on regular wallpaper. I can't offer any help; only my sympathies that you are dealing with it.
 

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Alan Sweet
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The people that manufacture vinyl wallpaper should be sent to prison.

The install stuff is really a bear to remove.

(Have they considered a small, insurance covered grease fire?)
 

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Going thru that myself too-- in some places 3 layers thick!!
Have decided that if I want to get back at anyone- I'll offer a wallpaper apply job in some ugly variety of that wallpaper.
Naw----- I'm not that vindictive...... Lol
 

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I had to take off a lot of wall paper recently in my own house. I swore I would never do it again. What I found is I could peal off the top layer. Then after scoring the bottom layer of paper I soaked that layer with hot water. Hot water seems to help the glue give up its hold on the wall. Also Home Depot sells some pretty good wall paper remover that works well b&c ut costs a lot more than hot water. Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks everyone. I was hoping there was something different I could try. In about 12 hours work I got about 150 square feet of it off which is about half the kitchen. As a afterthought maybe I should score the paper with my orbital sander.
 

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A paint shaver might work if you can find one that is economically feasible. Expensive but maybe you can rent one.

http://www.paintshaver.com/ecom/category/2/

I have been told by house wives who DIY to use the cheapest fabric softener as a wall paper paste dissolver.

Porter Cable makes a paint removal tool as well. It looks like a giant router that spins a carbide aluminum disk in several grits.

Never used either one for this application but it might work for you.
 

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where's my table saw?
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unless I'm all wet here

The vinyl is not porous and keeps the water from wetting the surface behind it and thus separating and softening the glue. That's why you need to perforate the surface. I'll also bet the vinyl is put on with an adhesive rather than a paste/glue making it more impervious to water. It's probably like vinyl shelf paper... impossible to remove. :thumbdown:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The vinyl is not porous and keeps the water from wetting the surface behind it and thus separating and softening the glue. That's why you need to perforate the surface. I'll also bet the vinyl is put on with an adhesive rather than a paste/glue making it more impervious to water. It's probably like vinyl shelf paper... impossible to remove. :thumbdown:
The adhesive will dissolve in water if I could get the water through the vinyl. I think it was professionally installed so not likely the pre-pasted stuff. The only thing I can think of is to use something else to score the vinyl layer so the steam can penetrate. The steamer takes the bottom layer off easily.

Another problem I'm having with it is I'm soaking it so long with the steamer it's damaging the paper on the sheetrock.
 

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There's a tool that you can get that you roll over the paper and it perforates the paper. I have no idea what it's called but a friend of mine had one and it worked quite well.
 

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Another problem I'm having with it is I'm soaking it so long with the steamer it's damaging the paper on the sheetrock.
A friend of mine used a steamer to remove the wallpaper in his bathroom. The steamer damaged the drywall so bad and he ended up ripping out the drywall and installing new drywall.

Earlier this year I stripped the builder installed wallpaper in our dinning room. I had one area that I actually removed the very top (white) layer of paper and had to apply drywall sealer and skim coat it. I also had many little dings from the putty knife to fix.

When we bought the house the builder told the walls were properly prepared before they were papered and that the paper was dry stripable, both were lies.

Good luck.
 

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I saw that one other person recommended fabric softener in the hot water. That is what worked for us, also. I actually soaked a bath towel in the bucket of hot water with Downy fabric softener. I would wring out the towel enough so it didn't drip all over, then hold it up to the wall (I rolled the end of the towel over a stick) and ran a clothes iron over it to drive the steam into the paper. I would steam an area the size of the towel, then go at it with a scraper.

It helps to have a lot of patience or a lot of swear words to keep the adrenaline going. I wouldn't wish this job on anybody.
 

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Oh man, what a PITA. Took me 10 hours labor to remove 4-walls of 13x11.5 room. Used the "kit" (1gallon stripper, piercing tool, special scraping tool and gloves) from Lowes. Unfortunately the idiot put up the paper over a textured wall, so I lost about 50% of the texture. Had to have the walls skimmed and re-textured.
Don't forget to wear gloves and pickup a case of beer... You're going to need it. The special scraping tool is a must.
 

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My suggestion: pay a neighbor kid to do it? It's just about the worst thing and it sucks no matter how you attack.


I think Burt's suggestion is great, but I would also add: a second case of beer.
 

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have you tried a heat gun? BE CAREFUL it will burn the wall but just run it across a couple times before you pull. I removed a vinyl floor that way.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I've been offline for a few days but I finally got the paper off. What seem to work the best is to perforate the vinyl layer and soak it down with a wallpaper remover for 15 to 20 minutes and then steam it off. Some of it then I was able to get off in entire sheets. I hope I never come behind that paperhanger again.
 

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I've been offline for a few days but I finally got the paper off. What seem to work the best is to perforate the vinyl layer and soak it down with a wallpaper remover for 15 to 20 minutes and then steam it off. Some of it then I was able to get off in entire sheets. I hope I never come behind that paperhanger again.
I feel for you. I do a lot of paper removal and you discovered the best way, But in addition don't worry about all the stuck backing and glue. It's faster and easier to paint over it with Zinsler(?) primer (or anything NOT a waterbase), hit it lightly with sandpaper to take off the curls, and retexture the wall after that.
 
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