How to Remove Popcorn Ceilings

how to remove popcorn ceilings

How to Remove Popcorn Ceilings

Popcorn ceilings were all the rage years ago. But they fell out of favor in the 1980s, just like Harvest Gold and Avocado Green appliances. If your home features a popcorn ceiling and you want to get rid of it, the good news is that although it’s a messy task, it’s not a difficult job. This article gives you an idea of how to remove popcorn ceilings.

Before you get started, you’ll need to check and see if the popcorn contains asbestos. If the popcorn was added before 1979, it likely does. To find out, wet a small area and scrape into a plastic bag and take it to get tested. Or have a pro come to your home and test it.

If it’s asbestos free, you can do the job yourself. Here’s how to remove a popcorn ceiling:

Use a drop cloth or plastic sheeting to completely cover the floor. Put a fan in the window for ventilation. If you don’t have a window, place the fan on the floor but don’t aim it toward the ceiling.

Use a portable hand sprayer to spray down small portions of the ceiling, about a 3’x3’ area. Let the liquid soak in and reapply if it gets dry but don’t get it too wet or it will damage the drywall.

Scrape using a ceiling texture scraper which contains a handy bag to catch falling debris to remove the popcorn. If you don’t have that, a putty scraper will do the trick, but you’ll have to clean up the floor when you’re finished.

When all the texture has been removed, sand the ceiling to ensure smoothness. If it appears to be in good shape, simply prime and paint for that finished look. If that’s not the case, you may need to apply joint compound and a skim coat.

Of course, if you want to avoid the task altogether, you can cover the ceiling with a ceiling product. Choose a decorative option like Fasade faux tin panels or a real tin ceiling like Great Lakes Tin Ceiling panels. Or install a grid system with lay-in panels. You don’t have to live with an ugly popcorn ceiling and fixing the eyesore is easier than you think.

What do you think of popcorn ceilings? Have a unique removal method of your own? Let us know in the comments!

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