How To Remove Popcorn Ceiling

Popcorn ceilings have spray-on/pain-on treatments that result in a bumpy surface made using tiny particles. Most homes built between the 1930s-1990s have popcorn ceilings.

The benefits of popcorn ceilings range from hiding ceiling imperfections to giving the ceiling sound-proof properties. However, the ceilings also have hazards. For instance, some popcorn ceilings have asbestos which is hazardous. The ceilings also trap dust and looks outdated. Since there are better and safer alternatives, how do you remove the ceiling?

Step 1: Does the Ceiling Have Asbestos?

Since popcorn ceilings may contain asbestos, they should be removed by experts with asbestos awareness & removal training. Asbestos exposure has serious consequences. You can get mesothelioma, lung cancer, and other serious respiratory problems if you attempt to remove popcorn ceiling containing asbestos. Experts paint contractors have the expertise to test and remove asbestos-containing materials safely.

There may be DIY-asbestos test kits you can get from the store. However, you also need safety gear like gloves, eye protection, a mask/ventilator. If your popcorn ceiling has asbestos, have an expert in asbestos removal get rid of the popcorn ceiling for you.

Step 2: Get the Required Tools

If your popcorn ceiling is tested and found to be free of asbestos, you can get to work. You’ll need special tools to get the job done well and safely. The main tools required include a drywall taping knife, drop cloths, painter’s tape, ladder, goggles, dust mask, and garden sprayer.

Step 3: Cover Everything

Removing popcorn ceiling involves a lot of scrapping, which can be very messy. Before you begin, cover your walls, flooring, and furniture. Preferably, you should remove furniture, wall hangings, light fixtures, and cover electrical outlets, HVAC vents, etc., before you start. Also, remember to open the windows for circulation and have protective gear on.

You should also be prepared psychologically for the task. It takes approximately 4 hours to remove 100 sqft of popcorn ceiling. If you haven’t done it before, expect to take more time. The process is also physically challenging, considering you will be on a ladder scraping away for hours. When you account for breaks, the process can be very lengthy and tiring.

Step 4: Scrap Away

You can dry scrape; however, it is easier to wet scrape. Using your garden sprayer, wet a section of the ceiling to make it easy to scrap. Work with small sections at a time, waiting at least 15 minutes for the water to be absorbed. A drywall taping knife will work perfectly if you run it along your wet ceiling section. However, be gentle to avoid gouging your ceiling.

Work your way until you have a smooth roof. You may need to repeat some sections. Spray some water on stubborn areas to make your work easier. Sand, prime and paint when done. You can use joint compounds to repair some gouges or other damage.

Conclusion: How To Remove Popcorn Ceiling

The above information covers the basics of removing popcorn ceiling. There’s obviously more to the process. For instance, painting popcorn ceiling may require a stripping product to be removed effectively.

The entire process is clearly challenging, time-consuming, and potentially dangerous. Working on a ladder for hours is risky. What’s more, you shouldn’t attempt to remove popcorn ceiling if you aren’t sure the ceiling is free of asbestos. You also need to invest in the right tools and gear to get the job done right.

In a nutshell, you are better off hiring an expert. The benefits of expert help far outweigh the time, resources, and effort required to remove popcorn ceiling on your own as a DIY project.

Hire Swift Painting LLC for all your residential painting needs. The company has experts in popcorn ceiling removal and other related jobs. The pricing is also great and the results are guaranteed.