How To Paint Over Wallpaper (Quick & Easy Process)


You don’t come across a wall decorated with wallpaper every day when you go inside someone’s house. Wallpapers are a one-of-a-kind item.

There are many benefits to using wallpaper to hide faults in a wall. It’s nearly impossible to get the same effect using paint.

As a result, when it comes to wallpaper vs paint, wallpapers come out on top. Even if you’ve had your heart set on a modern aesthetic for years, your old favorites may look out of place.

As a person who likes to change the style of their home, you may assume wallpaper isn’t for you because it’s time-consuming to remove.

However, wallpapers can now be used to stay in trend. It’s possible to accomplish this simply by painting over the wallpaper.

Now that you’ve thought about it, you might wonder if you can actually paint over wallpaper. Overpainting wallpaper may be frowned upon.

However, it is a normal practice to paint over wallpaper with wall paints. Problems with your wall will be greater if you remove the wallpaper.

As a result, painting over wallpaper is always preferable. By painting over your wallpaper, you preserve your dry walls while also concealing any damage they may have sustained.


Let’s take a look at the characteristics that make it easier to paint over wallpaper.

Can You Paint Over Wallpaper?

Before painting, it’s best to get rid of the wallpaper and clean up any adhesive residue, according to any painting professional or paint company.

Removing wallpaper can sometimes cause damage to the underlying wall. If the wallpaper was put up over under-construction drywall or plaster, this might happen.

It’s also possible that you’ll have to remove several coats of wallpaper, which will make things even more challenging.

The Right Time To Paint Over Wallpaper

Wallpaper that is in good condition should only be painted over with paint. The wallpaper should be examined to see if painting on top of it is possible.

Removing it is a better option than starting to paint on it if huge chunks of it are coming off. It’s impossible for the paint to adhere correctly if the wallpaper you have is filthy or if it has a lot of mildew patches.

Paint will not adhere well to plastic-coated removable wallpaper. When it comes to this style of wallpaper, painting it over may actually create more mess.

As a result of the paint, removing the wallpaper without causing damage to the walls will be difficult, if not impossible.

Wrong Time To Paint Over Wallpaper

Wallpaper that can’t be painted over is one of those things. Multiple-peeled wallpaper and vinyl wallpaper with a fabric backing fall under this category.

Because of this, these wallpapers can be easily removed. When it comes to painting, terrible pieces for painting over are easily removed, and good pieces for painting over are tough to remove.

Remove the wallpaper before making a final decision on whether or not you want to keep it. If you succeed, you’ll know what to do better next time around.

Consider, too, that getting rid of the wallpaper that is being painted over is significantly more difficult than removing wallpaper that hasn’t been painted.

Suitable Types Of Paints To Be Applied On Wallpaper

It doesn’t matter if the wallpaper is oil-based or water-based; you can paint over it with whatever paint you like.

However, before you apply your top coat to the walls, you’ll need to prepare them with an oil-based primer.

A water-based primer should never be used since it can make the wallpaper become loose – and that is something you do not want to happen.

You can use latex or an oil-based primer as a base coat, followed by a latex interior paint for the final layer.

How To Paint Over Wallpaper – Complete Process

Cleaning With Diluted TSP

In order to successfully paint over wallpaper, one must first prepare the surface. This may necessitate fixing or replacing areas of wallpaper that are loose or missing.

Preparation for this project includes scrubbing the surface with trisodium phosphate. TSP has to be diluted because it’s so potent.

You should strive for a half-cup to two-gallon water ratio by mixing it in a bucket with water. The manufacturer’s instructions, as well as the printed safety warnings, should be followed in the letter.

If you’re painting over wallpaper, make sure the room where you’re doing so is properly ventilated. An additional paintbrush can be used to apply TSP.

After the trisodium phosphate has dried, wipe the wall clean with a moist rag. Tread lightly. It’s possible that the paint won’t stick to the surface if you don’t use enough water.

If you use too much water, the wall may be damaged.

Understanding The Type Of Wallpaper

Before you even pick up a brush, have a look at the existing wallpaper to see what kind of material it is. The type you’ll be dealing with is an important initial step.

Different approaches will be needed for various sorts of coverings. When painting paper or vinyl-coated wallpapers, preparation and priming are essential.

If you don’t prep and prime properly, the wallpaper’s seams and edges may begin to come loose. Unfortunately, some types of covers cannot be primed and painted but rather must be removed.

Heavy fabric-supported vinyl must not be painted over. Because of this, they can be removed.

Understanding The Damage

Your finished job will be a success if your wallpapers are in good shape. Spillane stresses the importance of ensuring that the wallpaper is clean and there are no signs of peeling at the margins or seams before painting over the surface.

As a rule of thumb, you should remove any loose or peeling paper from the surface you plan to paint before commencing any painting project.

Using Right Tools

Oil-based paint has a strong odor, so be sure to let the room air out as much as possible. People who are sensitive to fumes, such as those with asthma, should leave the work area throughout the process.

The smell will diminish in a day. Don’t skimp on the brush; a brush made for oils will have more bristles and will better grab the paint.

When used, cheap brushes leave smudges and bristles all over the wall. Mineral spirits or paint thinner can be used to clean your brushes.

In order to remove the paint from the brushes as much as possible, swish the brushes in the solvent. ​​When they are dry, do not use those brushes for any other purpose.

Adhesive & Primer

The last thing you’ll want to see after taking up the project is layers flaking away from the wall behind it.

One method of preventing wallpaper peeling is to add an adhesive compound to the areas where the wallpaper is most fragile, such as the seams, the meeting point of the floor, and the ceiling.

It is even better to finish the job the right way, by treating the wall with a primer-sealer post to the job with quality paint.

Primers and sealers not only reduce the likelihood of peeling but also offer a surface on which the paint may attach more quickly.

Because water and wallpaper do not mix, an oil-based primer-sealer should be used rather than a water-based solution.

Painting – First Coat

Applying the topcoat can begin once the primer has dried, so be sure to wait. As with the primer, cut in around windows and doors and along baseboards with a little angled brush.

After that, paint the wall with a roller. Start from a corner and work your way down the wall in horizontal bands.

Let the paint dry thoroughly before moving on. However, keep in mind that climate can alter how long it takes to dry.

Painting – Second Coat

Before applying the second layer, allow the first to dry fully. In the meantime, you could sand the wall. Sanding is time-consuming, but it’s worth it because it eliminates defects and improves the completed look of your work.

The next step is applying the topcoat, which can be done in either manner. Take a moment to appreciate the progress you’ve made.

You’ll be greeted by shining, newly painted surfaces instead of the wallpaper you had grown bored of.

Final Verdict

This was all about our guide for you about painting over a wallpaper. Hope this comprehensive guide has helped you in understanding the factors and the right process for performing the job. Make sure you follow all the steps to give your project a success. All the best.

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