Please tell me your experience with "popcorn ceiling" removal UPDATE pics#15 - Mothering Forums
Organize & Declutter > Please tell me your experience with "popcorn ceiling" removal UPDATE pics#15
fruitful womb's Avatar fruitful womb 11:15 PM 11-20-2008
I did this 7yrs ago. Its been awhile. I've forgotten how exactly dh and I was successful in removing the popcorn off the ceiling.

I'm trying to accomplish this right now.
Going by fragmented memory, I put one part fabric softener in with one part water. Then, I sprayed the entire ceiling area with this solution.

This house smells like its going to be static free for a long time!

I don't think I'm doing it right because its been an hour and the ceiling still feels very hard.

I was able to scrape the popcorn off with ease the last time I attempted this project.

Please share your success stories, or failures. I could learn from that too.

broodymama's Avatar broodymama 11:42 PM 11-20-2008
: (no pun intended! )

Our house has a popcorn ceiling with gold sparkles in it. I hate it, but the vaulted ceiling in the living room kind of intimidates me. I'm interested in hearing what others have to say too.
fruitful womb's Avatar fruitful womb 11:52 PM 11-20-2008
ok, I just tried something different. I read in another forum I stumbled upon during some research that if you use soapy hot water, it shoud soften the painted ceiling.

I think I sucessful last time because the ceiling wasn't painted. I've read that once painted, its almost impossible to remove.

I took one of those diswasher cascade pouches, (I'm not using them anymore since I don't have a working dishwasher) and dumped it into hot water then poured the solution in a pray bottle.

I'm done spraying the solution. I'm letting it soak in for 20 min. and I'll see if the texture will budge off the ceiling.

I'll keep you all posted.

Crap, I didn't mean to erase my OP

Red Sonja, I think your popcorn pun is hilarious!
broodymama's Avatar broodymama 05:57 AM 11-21-2008
Let me know how it goes!

Our house was built in the mid-70s, which means it's very likely that there's asbestos in the popcorn ceiling. That's something I don't want to mess with. If it's just hanging out up there then that's one thing, but to mess with it and end up with a house full of friable asbestos is not a situation that I want to be in. We haven't had it tested, but given the age of the house it's pretty likely.
alegna's Avatar alegna 01:28 PM 11-21-2008
Let me just say from experience (one pipe leak and a hurricane...) that if it gets wet enough, it comes down.... In great, messy sheets.

Sigh. Can't wait until I can get rid of it all... though the hurricane arranged for me to eliminate it in my kitchen/breakfast area/laundry room AND the master bedroom... sigh.

-Angela
sunnysandiegan's Avatar sunnysandiegan 03:19 PM 11-21-2008
We hired this job out for $1 per square foot, which was TOTALLY WORTH IT!!! Water was used and the stuff came down in large sheets and it is super HEAVY. That is the extent of my knowledge of that part of the process...
JTA Mom's Avatar JTA Mom 11:52 PM 11-21-2008
Water in a spray bottle & a scraper of some sort. Painted popcorn sucks, but if you can get a small part free, spray around the edges & use the scrapper to loosen it. It works really well. As for the asbestos, if the popcorn is completely wet (believe me, it's pretty heavy), shouldn't the asbestos be stuck on it & not airborne?

Btw, I HATE it too. Pieces of it would always fall off when cleaning, etc. Ugh.

Ami
Kavita's Avatar Kavita 12:31 AM 11-22-2008
We did some removing of vinyl asbestos tile, so I did a bunch of reading about abestos removal, and from my understanding popcorn can also have asbestos. And that the key is to get it wet, and KEEP it wet until it is safely removed. The asbestos particles are lighter than air and so they will float around and can be inhaled, unless they are wet. We also ventilated well with an open window, a fan blowing out, and taped plastic around all the heating vents so that it couldn't enter the air duct system. But don't take my word for it, I'd get on the EPA site and see what they have to say. Just in case--this is one area where you probably want to be overcareful rather than undercareful.
mymccauleykids's Avatar mymccauleykids 12:42 AM 11-22-2008
I have removed popcorn room by room in my house. Some of it has been painted and some of it has not been painted. Both times I sprayed water from a spray bottle directly on the area that I was about to scrape off, usually about a 2' x 2' area and then worked on scraping that before the water had a chance to reach to drywall so as not to prevent any damage. On the unpainted ceiling the popcorn came off in chunks and on the painted cieling it came off in sheets, but would sometimes get stuck on the taping. In the end the painted ceiling took longer to remove, but the unpainted was messier. O am so happy I put in the time though, the end result is soooo much better.
iamama's Avatar iamama 01:01 AM 11-22-2008
Our ceiling had radiant heating! and most likely asbestos! so we covered it in drywall and retextured.
elsie's Avatar elsie 01:52 AM 11-22-2008
IMO, it is not worth messing with since there is a potential of asbestos in it. Get it tested, have professionals remove it if it is positive. The lungs you save may be your own, or your child's. Seriously. Asbestosis is not a fun way to die.
fruitful womb's Avatar fruitful womb 04:16 AM 11-23-2008
I appriciate everyones replys.

Quote:
Originally Posted by elsie View Post
IMO, it is not worth messing with since there is a potential of asbestos in it. Get it tested, have professionals remove it if it is positive. The lungs you save may be your own, or your child's. Seriously. Asbestosis is not a fun way to die.
This is frighting. Especially since I started the job. I did already have this knowledge but didn't do a through investigation on the matter because from what I've read, asbestos was banned in the late 70's. The house we're in now, was built in the 80s.

I did an accurate research this evening after reading your post and came up with:
http://www.epa.gov/asbestos/pubs/ashome.html
Which says:
Quote:
Asbestos may be present in textured paint and in patching compounds used on wall and ceiling joints. Their use was banned in 1977.

I also went to www.tad.org , clicked on 'property search' and typed in my address to see a record of when exactly this house was built. It was built in 1980.

Even tho there is a very slim chance my ceiling could have asbestos, I'm feeling a little guilty for not having it tested.
Where in the world would I go get it tested?

I've been working my but off all day, yesterday, and still not done!
I think the ceiling has been painted several times as the water will not penatrate. I've used an entire bottle of fabric softener mixed with a 2part water solution. I used this before at a different house and had a huge success with it. It won't budge on this ceiling. I'm about 60% done. I scrape the textue as hard as I can, get the surface really wet <<again>> then it comes off. Its still hard work and it takes a long time. And I'm very sore. I'll post pics soon. I'll take pictures of it tomorrow before I begin again and then when everything is done, including the "Enchanted Violet" (color for her walls) and "Pixe Dust" (color for her trim and ceiling) I'll post more pics.

My estimated finish with the paint project will be done next Saturday. I'll still work on getting framed pictures for her room, and we're going to replace the carpet, and get her a new bed. I have a limited bugdet so this project may take a few months before I call it quits.
Eman'smom's Avatar Eman'smom 01:28 AM 11-24-2008
So what do you do with the ceiling once you get it off? Is there damage to repair? Just paint it and you're done? I'd love to take ours off but I'm afraid that when/if it comes down the end result will be worse than what was there before.
SleeplessMommy's Avatar SleeplessMommy 01:56 AM 11-24-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eman'smom View Post
So what do you do with the ceiling once you get it off? Is there damage to repair? Just paint it and you're done?
Lots of spackle!

If you want to, the 1980 ceiling can be tested ... just put some popcorn in a baggy and send it to a test lab. $$$ later, you will get an answer. Might not be worth it if it is all removed now.
fruitful womb's Avatar fruitful womb 03:03 AM 11-24-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by SleeplessMommy View Post
Lots of spackle!

If you want to, the 1980 ceiling can be tested ... just put some popcorn in a baggy and send it to a test lab. $$$ later, you will get an answer. Might not be worth it if it is all removed now.
No, cause its all removed now. But I'm really not all that worried. I've lived in a asbestos home before. In fact, when we were repairing our bathroom (pregnant with dd at that time - had to because our only toilet in the house broke and our floor in there was peeling. MW wouldn't help me deliver dd in that condition. So it had to be done.) I became seriously sensitive to the environment. It was aweful. It was so hard to breath in that house during that time. I'm so happy we're not living there anymore.

During this project, I didn't feel like my lungs were burning nor did I have an allergy attack and I'm prone to allergies.

Here are some pictures of whats been done so far:

60% of the ceiling removed

2nd pic of the popcorn partly removed

Last 60% popcorn removed
picture


"Removal is complete" #1 pic

"Removal is complete" #2 pic

"Removal is Complete" last pic

Oh, and I JUST FOUND OUT that my BIL and his wife and son will be staying with us for Thanksgiving! Yikes!!! : I hadn't planned for that. I don't know how this is going to effect my time schedule of getting the room done. Now I have to prepare the rest of the house!!! Busy Busy day for me tomorrow.
fruitful womb's Avatar fruitful womb 03:07 AM 11-24-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eman'smom View Post
So what do you do with the ceiling once you get it off? Is there damage to repair? Just paint it and you're done? I'd love to take ours off but I'm afraid that when/if it comes down the end result will be worse than what was there before.
Look at the pictures and you will noticed I nicked the drywall several places. My next step is to clean the walls really well and use compound mud and spakle the flaws. Then, I'll prime it. (I'm going to try to get dh to do that, fingers crossed!) After thats dry I'll paint the trim and the ceiling a "Pixe Dust" color, a creamy purplish pink. I'll post more pics of when thats done.
sunnysandiegan's Avatar sunnysandiegan 06:16 AM 11-24-2008
WAY TO GO!!!! I know how much work that is!!!

We hired out the scraping, removal, and hand-texturing part of the job and the professional was done with our entire house (about 1200 square feet of ceiling) in two days (one guy at $1/square foot). Then, we caulked, primed, and painted (two coats of everything was required) all the ceilings, except the vaulted foyer ceiling, ourselves. (That vaulted ceiling had to wait due to lack of proper equipment and rental of such equipment was too pricey to justify it.) OH MY!!! That was quite an INTENSE job!!!

DH helped me with the upstairs, where we started. DD's room took THREE coats of primer and paint, each. I ended up doing most of the downstairs by myself. A friend/neighbor, whom we frequently trade "labor" with, helped me with some of the downstairs. I did all the prep and clean-up solo and she helped with the rollering of two of the four ceilings. What took us the longest, though, was rebuilding the edge where the lower ceilings meet rooms with higher ceilings. That took amazing amounts of patience and time.

All I can say is it was TOTALLY WORTH every second and every penny and every ache and pain!!! I despised our ceilings before. I absolutely LOVE our house now!!!!

P.S. Two years later, LOL, I hired painters to paint the entire interior of our home, except the ceilings we had done. All because I could not fathom painting each room in piecemail again AND due to the vaulted ceiling and walls downstairs. Other towhomes in our HOA have 1.5 story vaulted ceilings, but ours is a full two-stories with no level flooring beneath (staircase with no landing). The vaulted ceiling took two years to be caulked, primed, and painted!!! LOL I never looked up there and ignored it. I started out just getting quotes for the vaulted areas and adjoining 2-story-high walls (bare minimum of foyer and living room and hallway due to the way the walls/rooms flow). For the work and hassle and cost, it worked out to be far more economical to have a professional do it all. We already had to move out due to another home improvement project controlled by our HOA, so I scheduled the painting to be done directly thereafter and we moved in with my dad for three weeks. Thankfully, he lives a two-minute walk from us! We had to remove all food (actually EVERYTHING ingested or put in the body or near any orifice) and photographs/artwork and soft, porous items (cushions, pillows, mattresses, clothing, etc) for the HOA project, so moving everything except the medium and large pieces of furniture for the painting project didn't seem like that big of a deal. LOL That was a CRAZY month due to these projects and two travel-related weekends all coinciding. It was totally worth it all!!! I am in love with our house now...still...and it has been over a year!!!

[Sorry to go on and on...guess I am super chatty tonight! I need to close the laptop and GO TO BED!!! LOL]

BEST WISHES WITH YOUR PROJECT!!! Your DD's room looks great so far...
fruitful womb's Avatar fruitful womb 09:48 AM 11-24-2008
Sunnysandiegan,

Thats one incredible story! THREE COATS OF EVERYTHING??? Reading that had me shaking my head going, "What in the world did I get myself into?" LOL.

Thanks so much for sharing with us your experience and thank you for the encouragement.

Looks like I'm up bright and early today! Gonna get my day started. Good to get a head start before my kids wake up!

Wish me luck. Hope to accomplish something before my company arrives.
sunnysandiegan's Avatar sunnysandiegan 02:50 PM 11-24-2008
I wish you alllllll the best!!!!

The three coats in DD's room were required due to the big light/color/texture difference between the taped joint seams and the rest of the drywall. Even with the hand-textured joint compound covering it all fairly evenly, it was REALLY noticeable after two coats of primer. We learned the hard way with the family office ceiling (first room we did...the guinea pig...LOL) that if you can still see the joint seams after the primer, they are likely to show after two coats of paint also (shows more like odd lighting or shadowing in the final appearance)... The family office technically has more than two coats of everything, but it was done haphazardly...LOL

Also, it was my DH's first time EVER painting, so there was a big learning curve. LOL AND, it was my first time painting ceilings specifically, which are technically just the same as walls, but the physical toll on the body is much greater.

You are way ahead of us with experience (even if it was 7 years ago...LOL)!!! I bet your DD's room turns out BEAUTIFUL!!! I'd love to see pictures when you are finished and along the way...
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