Painting over wallpaper
When you have a previously wallpapered a room in your house, and it looks old and tired, you can spruce it up by giving a coat of paint without having to strip the walls first.
Make sure your wallpaper has no discernible pattern on the face of it. The reason for this is that you do not want the pattern showing through your new paintwork.
Simply rub your hands across the face of it and if it’s very smooth you can paint over it without any pattern showing through. Likewise, you may be happy with a raised pattern showing through. It’s totally up to you.
The 1st step.
The first step is to make sure that your wallpaper surface is sound. You will need to purchase some overlap adhesive, before painting over wallpaper.
Check over every seam and corner of each length. You will find it that over time these have become loose and need to be stuck back with the overlap adhesive. Simply slide a stripping knife behind any loose seams or lose corners and apply a small amount of overlap adhesive to these loose areas. Use a clean damp rag to wipe off any excess paste from the surface.
Use an appropriate sealer for painting over wallpaper.
Once you have prepared the wall paper with the overlap adhesive, you will need to first seal the walls. There are two types I have used in the past and both work well. These are Zinnser Gardz and Zinsser Wallpaper cover up.
Zinnser Gardz is a clear water based sealer. When applying zinsser gardz you do not need to put too much onto the roller as the product is very watery. Simply apply Zinnser Gardz to the wallpaper and let it dry. You only need a single coat. The product dries clear so if you’re applying a similar paint colour over the wallpaper colour, this would be ideal.
Zinnser wallpaper cover up Is a sealer that is white in colour. It is applied like a paint and is much thicker in consistency than Zinnser Gardz. So you may need more of the product to cover the wallpaper simply because of its thicker consistency.
Apply both the sealers as you would in a normal fashion by cutting in the top and bottom with a brush and using a roller for painting over wallpaper.
Painting the first coat.
Once you see that has dried you are ready to paint the first coat of paint. There are three types of finish level, matt, satin and silk.
The most commonly of these finishes that are used is a matt finish. The matt finish can contain vinyl or can be a much more durable finish. These finishes dry to a matt finish (no shine) and will hide badly prepared walls.
There are matt finishes that contain no vinyl these could be rubbed off with water. These are called contract matt paint. These contract finishes are ideal for ceilings but not ideal for walls. I would avoid a contract matt finish for walls for this project.
Satin finish is more commonly known as an eggshell finish. These finishes dry with a sheen finish, not a full glossy shine to them. They are easily washed down to keep clean because of the sheen factor in the paint.
Silk finishes are a full glossy finish. I would avoid silk finishes as it shows up every indentation lump and bump in the wall. Also technically they can be difficult to apply and cause filler to flash.
Apply your first coat of paint. Once this has been applied you may notice quite a lot of bubbling of the wallpaper. These usually go down once the paint is fully dried. If they do not you may have to to cut a slit into the wallpaper and use some overlap adhesive to stick back behind the bubble. Allow to fully dry before making good.
Making good over wallpaper.
Making good simply means the process of using filler to lose indentations and bumps and seams on the wall.
You will notice after your first coat of paint that there will be areas on the wallpaper that need to be made good.
The filler I use needs to be mixed with water and is a drywall filler. I use Gyproc Easi-Fill. You can use standard fillers like Polyfilla or Toupret, but I do find these are overpriced and the quantities are not enough.
Gyproc Easi-Fill comes in 5 kg or 10 kg bags. You may not need these amounts for the work you need to do. So the standard fillers would work well for you. You can use ready mixed fillers but I would stay away from these as sometimes they can dry too hard.
Using a wide 6 inch filling knife, (Purdy do a very good one), Apply the filler over lapped seams or use it to fill in indentations or to widen out bumps on the wall.
The trick to using filler is to try to hide imperfections in the wall. So widening out bumps means to make the bump slightly larger around the base of the bump to deflect your eye away from it.
Also the same with indentations. You use the filler to fill indentations in to deflect your eye away from it.
Raised seams can also be lost. Use the filler to fill over the seam to lose the raised edge. Fill the seam in a vertical direction following the seam, don’t fill across the seam in a horizontal direction.
Once your filler is dry why you can sand down lightly using either 120 grade sandpaper or 180 grade sandpaper. You just want to lose the raised edges of the filler and smooth it out with the sandpaper.
Once you have rubbed all your filler down, you need to go through the process of what is called ‘spotting up,’ Spotting up basically means touching up your filler with your paint in order to seal it before the second coat. This is an important step prior to painting over wallpaper.
Painting the 2nd coat.
As you can see all the previous steps are the most important. This step is simply the final coat. This steps gives you the finish coat on your walls and is the easiest step of all.
Sometimes you may get staining coming through from painting over wallpaper. This can be dried paste or simply stains on the wallpaper itself. Prior to applying the second coat make sure you use a stain blocker on these areas. Most stain blockers can be an aerosol can that will dry quick when used. Simply spray the stain blocker on any areas of staining prior to your second coat.
Once the stain blocker has been applied then simply paint your walls with your finish coat of paint.
In order to get to the final coat you have to make sure you go through the steps above. If you are decorating the entire room make sure you go through the right preparation process and order
For example, make sure your ceilings are painted and finished your woodwork is filled and prepared and you are ready at this point for the final coat of paint on the walls.
It is easier than you think to paint over your wallpaper. Just go through the right steps first.