About a month ago, I embarked on a mission to paint my half bathroom. Before I could paint, I had to remove the floor-to-ceiling wallpaper AND wallpaper on the ceiling. I successfully removed the wallpaper from the four walls but ran into a bit of trouble with the paper on the ceiling. I scored the ceiling wallpaper with a Paper Tiger and sprayed Zinsser Wallpaper Stripper, but, as you can imagine, the solution didn't absorb upward into the paper. After two weekends of scraping, I've removed half of the wallpaper and scraped several areas of drywall paper off too.

I'm now considering a different approach. Should I put a piece of drywall over the existing drywall? Or should I rip the ceiling drywall off and replace it?

Do you have any recommendations on this approach? Should I consider something else?

  • I imagine that whatever it takes to remove the wall paper, it will be way less of a pain than putting a new layer of drywall up (or replacing the existing layer).
    – negacao
    Feb 20, 2021 at 20:11
  • I have already put in 8-10 hours of scraping to get about halfway through a 5x5 ceiling. Which do you think would be faster, 8-10 more hours of scraping followed by mud-work to smooth the drywall or put on a new layer of drywall and mud-work for the joints?
    – demaskey
    Feb 20, 2021 at 21:01
  • Oh, if it's that small then I retract my statement. :)
    – negacao
    Feb 20, 2021 at 21:06
  • ROFLOL! I recognize this should have been a small effort.
    – demaskey
    Feb 20, 2021 at 21:30
  • I would still recommend continuing to scrape down the existing ceiling. From what you say that seems to be working. You should just do the job and not worry about how long it takes to do it best as you can.
    – Michael Karas
    Feb 20, 2021 at 22:48

1 Answer 1


Stubborn wallpaper is almost always easier fixed by either rip and replace drywall (allows you to fix anything else while you have access) or drywall over (have to extend or move any penetrations of the ceiling.

8-10 hours already spent for a 25 foot square patch - could have been done already if you ripped and replaced, IME.

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