DIY How To

How to correct wallpaper problems

Contents
Stains
Chart

DIY Projects - Wallpaper problems

Whether you're a beginner or an expert, some where along the way you are going to experience problems when it comes to hanging wallpaper. Luckily there is usually a very easy way to put things right.

Bubbles

Bubbles are probably the most common problem, especially for the beginner. If you see that there are bubbles in the paper and it is too late to smooth them out, leave them until the paste has completely dried out as sometimes the bubbles will disappear. If the bubbles remain then simply pierce the bubble with a syringe, suck out the paste and wipe over with a sponge, until all the excess paste is removed. Wipe any paste from the surface of the paper.

If a bubble is full of air due to lack of paste, pierce the bubble with a syringe but this time fill the syringe with paste and squeeze some paste inside of the bubble,then smooth down with a sponge.


Joins

Seams should butt up to each other and not overlap, if they overlap sometimes the paper will not stick very well and you will need to apply more paste under the seam. Use a small paint 2mm (1/2") paint brush apply some paste behind the seam, smooth down with a sponge and remove any excess paste from the surface of the paper.

Sometimes there will be a gap between two pieces of paper where they have not butted up correctly. Make sure that you leave the paper to soak as per manufacturers instructions or the paper can shrink when it dries leaving the wall visible between the two pieces.

If the problem is the paper lifting on a seam then using a small 12mm (1/2") paint brush apply some paste behind the seam, smooth down with a sponge and remove any excess paste from the surface of the paper.


Pattern Problems

If the pattern tends to run out slightly from one piece of paper to another when butting up, this is usually caused by under or over soaking the paper so one piece has stretched slightly more than the other.

Stains

If you see stains coming through the paper, then this is almost always caused by poorly sealed plaster. Other stains can be caused by paste that has dried on the surface of the paper.

Problem

Possible Cause

Solution

Bubbles Too much paste used. Pierce bubble with craft knife, remove excess paste and smooth bubble down with a sponge.
Bubbles Paste coverage uneven. If bubble is full of air pierce with a craft knife and using a small brush or similar apply paste to inside of bubble and smooth down with a sponge.
Bubbles Paper not left to soak for long enough. Allow paper to soak as per manufacturers instructions.
Joins showing Paper not butted up sufficient. Butt seams correctly and roll with a seam roller.
Joins showing Lining paper not used. Use lining paper to line walls.
Joins showing Paper has shrunk. Allow paper to soak as per manufacturers instructions.
Paper tears Too much paste Apply less paste, make sure paste gives even coverage.
Paper tears Blunt tools Use sharp scissors and knives.
Creases Not smoothed out correctly. Make sure paper is smoothed from middle outwards when been hung.
Creases Papering around corners and objects Make a series of small cuts to allow paper to lie flat.
Seams lifting Walls not lined. Use lining paper to line walls.
Seams lifting Not enough paste on edges of paper. Use a small brush to paste along the seam of the join and smooth down with a sponge, remove any excess from surface of paper.
Paper not sticking Walls not lined. Use lining paper to line walls.
Paper not sticking Plaster not sealed. Remove wallpaper and size walls with PVA adhesive or emulsion.
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