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"How To Hang Wallpaper Easy"
Starts With A Good Foundation!


Would you know which "wall-prep" to use when hanging wallpaper? With so many different products on the market today for wall preparation, such as acrylic, oil-based, water-based, stain blocker, primer sealer, and many others, it can become quite confusing. So lets ask the professionals.

The most important step to installing all types of wallpaper successfully is to prep your walls. Proper preparation will ensure successful results for all your wallpaper projects. Therefore, do you size or prime, that's the question.

You have borders, embossed, fabric backed, flock, foils, grass-cloth, moire, mylar, nonwovens, photo murals, silks, string, textured, vinyls, the list goes on. With the different wall textures and the many different types of wallpapers, you no longer size your walls.

  • Sizing is a thing of the past

    The older homes had plaster walls, a diluted wallpaper adhesive was used to size the walls. The wallpaper to be installed was a paper, which had no vinyl coatings. New wallpaper was installed on top of the old wallpaper. Before you knew it, there were several layers of wallpaper. Each layer would just fuse together, removal was nearly impossible.

  • Today professionals oil-base prime their walls

    Today most of your home interior walls are drywall.

    The drywall is painted with a thin coat of builders paint and a top coat of latex paint. Many professional wallpaper installers, as well as the do-it-yourselfers, have made the mistake of just sizing the walls. Only to have many problems with their wallpaper. Today manufacturers will always tell you to prime your walls with a good quality oil-base primer before installing wallpaper. It is of highest importance to read and follow all their instructions. Don't take shortcuts, you will be unhappy with your results. Not only will you have problems with your seams coming apart, most likely wall damage will occur when removing your wallpaper many years down the road.

  • Oil-Base primer is an excellent insurance

    Using a good quality oil-base primer is the best insurance for you to enjoy the longevity of your wallpaper. The primer works by not allowing the wallpaper paste to penetrate and absorb into the walls surface. Therefore, this will ensure your seams stay tight for the duration of the job. Primer also provides a solid surface for the wallpaper adhesive, and will improve the adhesion of the wallpaper. When hanging the wallpaper, the primer gives you a longer wet time allowing you to slide the wallpaper easily, adjust the pattern, or straighten the seams which may be necessary during the installation process.

  • Why should you prime your walls before hanging wallpaper

    Primer will make the difference between an excellent installation and no seams-popping or coming apart. To ensure that your wallpaper will adhere to your walls correctly you must always apply oil-base primer on the walls first. It is crucial to let the primer dry overnight to work properly. Many professionals as well as the do-it-yourselfer cut corners and don't prime the walls. This is a very big mistake.

    There are many reasons why you should use an oil-base primer on your walls before installing wallpaper. Preparing your walls correctly is the most important step for a successful installation job. Never cut corners on this step, prime, prime, prime. A good quality oil-base primer is designed to penetrate the existing wall surface and will also seal up any problem areas due to wall damage. Primer will also block out and seal out anything that may come through the existing paint to damage your new wallpaper. Primer protects the underlying wall surface during wallpaper installation and wallpaper removal.

    Primer allows a technique professional use to double-cut wallpaper. This is when you overlap the wallpaper at the seams' edge and hand cut the seams going through both layers of wallpaper at one time. Without the primer the drywall would split. This technique cannot be done without an oil-base primer.

  • So you ask, what will happen if I don't prime

    When the wallpaper is installed it takes 24 to 48 hours for the wallpaper adhesive to dry completely. As the wallpaper dries it contracts, this puts a lot of tension on the underlying paint. If the wallpaper is installed over latex paint, the paint will soften and lose its integrity. Your wallpaper will not have a good bond and this is when your seams start to come apart.

    Many jobs that we go on have seams that are coming apart. When we see this, we know the walls were not primed properly. Therefore, the next time you see wallpaper bursting at the seams take a closer look at the backside of the wallpaper! Do you see paint on the backside of the paper? It actually is not the wallpaper falling off the walls, it is the paint. At this point the seams cannot be repaired. It is very difficult to glue paint and wallpaper back in place. The wallpaper must be removed and with this will come a lot of wall damage.

  • Primer saves the day when removing wallpaper

    Wallpaper has gotten a bad-wrap over the last few years. Some professionals, as well as the novice do-it-yourselfers, use insufficient primer or have omitted this process all together. Never cut corners when it comes to priming your walls, or use an insufficient primer.

    This will only cause major problems when you take down your wallpaper; therefore, expect lots of expensive and time-consuming wall damage.

    Removing wallpaper is a great burden and concern to many people. Most all the people we talk to are convinced removing any type of wallpaper will result in plaster or drywall damage. Over the years they have seen wallpaper removal destroy their walls. They no longer will consider using wallpaper and have gone back to paint. However, this does not have to be the case. Using a good quality oil-base primer will not only simplify wallpaper removal, but will also decrease the chances of wall damage. Wallpaper removal can be done with very little to no wall damage.

  • Existing mold must be cleaned

    Existing mold must be cleaned from the walls before priming. Use a bleach solution, 3 parts water to 1 part bleach. This will take care of minor mold or surface mold. If major mold is present drywall may need to be replaced. At this point you may want to contact a professional.

  • What you should know before you begin to prime

    Before you begin to work with any primers it is very important that you read and follow all manufacturers instructions completely. You must have good ventilation, wear a respirator designed for primers and paints, goggles, and gloves. Your health is of the highest importance, as a professional we always take these precautions, and you must do the same.

    Make sure the electricity is turned off at the main panel, or main fuse box, this will ensure your safety. Remove all switch plate covers. Remove as much furniture from the area that you will be priming, and cover the larger pieces with plastic or drop cloths. You must also protect your floors.

    Wallpaper primers are available in most hardware stores and paint stores. Because all primers dry white, many professionals tint the primer to match the background of the wallpaper. This is also a very good idea to do when working with dark colored wallpapers. Therefore, if you have already chosen your wallcovering you may want to have the primer tinted to match the background of the wallpaper. This will minimize the visibility of any hairline seams which may occur after the wallpaper has dried.

  • Let's see how to apply the wallpaper primers with minimum hassle

    Applying primer is not very difficult. Prime your walls just like you would as if you were painting. Be sure to use a paint roller to apply primer on the walls and a paint brush to cut in the ceiling, baseboard, corners and edges. Do not skimp, cover every area with primer where wallpaper will be installed.

    Always let primer dry overnight before installing your new wallpaper.

    Make a note to purchase a high quality primer suited for your wall type and composition. There are different primers for different walls. Oil based primers are best. The walls have to be clean and dry before the primer is applied. We like to use Benjamin Moore's interior oil-base primer. It's consistence is like paint, it also tints well to match the background of your wallpaper.

  • Wallpaper is manufactured very differently today

    No longer is wallpaper just a paper. It is made out of many different textures, and many different weights, and many different types of wallpaper.

    To search wallpaperonwalls.com type your keywords below:

    (examples: grasscloth wallpaper, tools, paint brush, DIY videos, design ideas, etc.)

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