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Old 04-15-2012, 08:50 AM   #1
Bulldog13
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Default Popcorn ceiling Removal

Got that crappy popcorn texture on my bathroom ceiling..whats the best way to remove it? Am I better off hiring a professional?
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:54 AM   #2
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Wet it with a spray bottle or a yard spray like you would use for weed killer. Let it soak in for 15 mins, wet again, and then start scraping.

It will make a mess so put plastic down unless the floor is unfinished.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:58 AM   #3
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

As long as it has never been painted, wet it slightly with a garden sprayer and scrape it off with a wide blade drywall knife. It's messy but easy. If it has been painted wetting it doesn't really help much so just start scraping. If you're going to apply texture you'll just need to do a little patching where ever your knife dug in. If you're going for a smooth ceiling then you will most likely need to float a thin coat of compound over the entire ceiling.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:59 AM   #4
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Quote:
Originally Posted by jhelrey View Post
Wet it with a spray bottle or a yard spray like you would use for weed killer. Let it soak in for 15 mins, wet again, and then start scraping.

It will make a mess so put plastic down unless the floor is unfinished.
This ^^

Definitely the fastest and easiest way, just a little messy but it works great.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:05 AM   #5
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Or just buy a piece of sheetrock or two and cover it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:21 AM   #6
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Thanks,Its got paint on it,...looks like crap.I think the house was built in the late 70's .. All the ceilings are either crappy popcorn or the "cake frosting" look.I guess it was quick and easy.... Sucks for me!
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:22 AM   #7
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

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Thanks,Its got paint on it,...looks like crap.I think the house was built in the late 70's .. All the ceilings are either crappy popcorn or the "cake frosting" look.I guess it was quick and easy.... Sucks for me!

No matter what its going to suck. Remember to wear a mask, that shit in the old days was not very lung friendly.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:46 AM   #8
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Have it tested for asbestos first.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:47 AM   #9
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

If it's in a bathroom it's been painted, by the time you scrape it then patch up the gouges then clean the mess you could have covered it with fresh drywall.

I used 1/4" drywall the cover the stucco ceiling in my office and it was pretty painless and quick.

On the subject of late 70's decor, my parents finished their basement in '79. The ceiling and the top 1/2 of the walls were white stucco with gold flakes. The bottom have were wood trim panels. Funky!
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:06 AM   #10
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

As others stated if not painted the spray and scrape works fast and yes its a mess! 1/4" drywall is fast and painless but most home centers don't carry it (at least in my area) so that kills a Sunday/weekend project.

Even painted it can be scraped pretty quick. I use a 10" feather blade (thin and under $12 most places) for applying and feathering out Spackle and take a file and round the the two corners to help reduce gouging. You can use the same blade to apply mud to smooth out any marks left by scraping.
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:19 AM   #11
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

I had to scrap my bathroom ceiling, used a "Homax 6100 Ceiling Texture Scraper". Works pretty good, just put a grocery bag on it. I filled up about 5 bags in a 10x10 room and didn't have to worry about tracking crap across my floors when I walked out of the bathroom. My hallway was double layered like mentioned above. What a pain in the but to match when you have to replace some of it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 11:11 AM   #12
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

I used something like this

Made a hell of a mess
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Old 04-15-2012, 11:39 AM   #13
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Quote:
Originally Posted by engineboy View Post
No matter what its going to suck. Remember to wear a mask, that shit in the old days was not very lung friendly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lotek View Post
Have it tested for asbestos first.
If you spray it down with water as you're supposed to do, you don't have dust and you don't have to worry even if it does have asbestos because it will be damp with no airborne particles flying around.

Even if the bathroom does have some size to it, if you wet it down, give it a few minutes to soak in, you could have it scraped in less than an hour.

Now...if the ceiloing has been painted a few times, forget it. Get some drywall and just go over it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 12:03 PM   #14
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

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If you spray it down with water as you're supposed to do, you don't have dust and you don't have to worry even if it does have asbestos because it will be damp with no airborne particles flying around.

Even if the bathroom does have some size to it, if you wet it down, give it a few minutes to soak in, you could have it scraped in less than an hour.

Now...if the ceiloing has been painted a few times, forget it. Get some drywall and just go over it.
You have to be a little more careful than that, but that's the basic idea, the idea is to keep it wet and keep wiping it down, wear a mask, bunnysuit wouldn't be a bad idea but not required, bag everything and take it to a household hazardous waste roundup. But...since it's painted, that won't work. The wife, who is in the hazardous waste business, recommended calling a pro or sheetrocking over it.
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Another example of when God turns to Darwin and says "I thought you were going to fix this s@#t".

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Old 04-15-2012, 12:26 PM   #15
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

It's not a bad idea to treat it like it has asbestos whether it has it or not.

Seall of doors...remove everything from the room....cover floor....wear a mask....scrape.

It actually goes quick.

Be aware that if it was put on after the house was built that it most likely is covering some big cracks. Also note that asbestos was banned in the 70's....so if it was done after that....it most likely does not have any asbestos.

The 1/4" drywall works ok...but you still have a lot of taping a mudding to do. Also note that 1/4" drywall does not attach as straight....I know......the hard way....our living room was popcorn (did sometime in the 80's to hid some big cracks). We scraped it off...and covered with 1/4" drywall.....lots of bumps and rolls....if you put 1/4" over the popcorn without cleaning it first....it's going to really look like crap.

I would suggest at least 1/2" if the cracks are too big to patch.

One last thing....after scraping wipe down with a wet rag....it actually cleans up nice....get it wet again and then use a sponge to wipe it clean...I used a sponge mop with bucket of water.

One other thing....if you have some cracks and don't feel like putting up more drywall....you might consider ceiling paper....it's sort of a British thing....it's like wall paper but has a dimensional patern to it. Easier than drywall.
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:33 PM   #16
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

Add white vinegar to the water, experiment with the ratio till you find the right mixture. approximately 1 cup per gallon if I recall.
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Old 04-15-2012, 03:30 PM   #17
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

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Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
It actually goes quick.

Be aware that if it was put on after the house was built that it most likely is covering some big cracks. Also note that asbestos was banned in the 70's....so if it was done after that....it most likely does not have any asbestos.

The 1/4" drywall works ok...but you still have a lot of taping a mudding to do. Also note that 1/4" drywall does not attach as straight....I know......the hard way....our living room was popcorn (did sometime in the 80's to hid some big cracks). We scraped it off...and covered with 1/4" drywall.....lots of bumps and rolls....if you put 1/4" over the popcorn without cleaning it first....it's going to really look like crap.

I would suggest at least 1/2" if the cracks are too big to patch.
This is good advice - I have done two or three rooms in our house - the biggest time consumer has been caused by the drywall under the popcorn - the joints were not well finished since it was going to be covered with the popcorn spray, so it was really like finishing new drywall at the joints and any gouges you may have put in with the scraping.
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Old 04-15-2012, 04:56 PM   #18
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

My popcorn removal project falls in the "Money Well Spent" catagory. For $500 had ~750 sq/ft removed and ceiling painted. On day one, a two man crew shows up and one worker put on stilts and removes the ceiling mounted curtain rods (curtains had been previously removed and were out for cleaning), hangs thin plastic on all of the wall while the other places plastic on floor and furnishings. In about three hours they had removed the popcorn and repaired the drywall, removed the plastic and did an adequate cleanup. The next day another two man crew arrived as scheduled and again draped the walls and covered the floor with plastic. They sealed the ceiling drywall with two coats of shellac and one coat of a semi gloss paint; then removed the plastic and performed a thorough cleanup all in about two hours.

I'm very pleased with the job and the speed in which it was done. It would take me far more than two days and five hours just to 'plan' the project! The final note was the drapery person reinstalled the rods when he hung the drape. As i said, money well spent!
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Old 04-15-2012, 06:01 PM   #19
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

That might work ... Its a small bathroom..gonna give it a shot.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:13 PM   #20
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Default Re: Popcorn ceiling Removal

The people "kenfath" hired did the right thing, although i'm not sure they needed to put 2 coats of shellac unless ther was some dark water stains. You will absolutely have to hit all joints, angles, and screw heads with 1/2 coats of mud. A light sanding, one coat oil base primer sealer IE: kilz. and one coat of the finish ceiling paint. The water you use to remove the popcorn may cause water staining that will come through your latex finish paint, this is why the oil base primer sealer is so important. Especially in a bathroom, with all the steam that has soaked into the ceiling to begin with.
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