Home & Garden

Popcorn Ceiling Removal

  • Last Updated:
  • Oct 16th, 2017 5:05 pm
[OP]
Jr. Member
May 12, 2017
149 posts
77 upvotes

Popcorn Ceiling Removal

HI all...

Current residence is occupied and has all our belongings. Looking to have professionals come and remove popcorn ceiling.

1. This is known to be a messy job. Is it practical to get it done when the house isn't vacant? We can move our furniture from one room to another while each room is individually done. Is that okay? Or will the dust fly all over the house into the nearby rooms as well?

2. Not looking at any crown moulding. Will a flat plain ceiling look okay? Or will the imperfections be obvious? Will a drywall be needed?

House built in early 1990s so no asbestos I'm thinking.
44 replies
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
24800 posts
2555 upvotes
East Gwillimbury
A flat plain ceiling looks awesome.

Personally I wouldn’t bother trying to remove the popcorn. The cost for labor is high and you’re better off removing the entire ceiling and putting in new dry wall
Deal Addict
Dec 19, 2009
2419 posts
851 upvotes
Gee wrote:
Oct 4th, 2017 6:19 pm
A flat plain ceiling looks awesome.

Personally I wouldn’t bother trying to remove the popcorn. The cost for labor is high and you’re better off removing the entire ceiling and putting in new dry wall
Just leave the existing ceiling there and cover over it with another layer of drywall.
Member
Feb 8, 2017
239 posts
92 upvotes
i've lived through both removing old ceiling and re drywalling and also just scraping off popcorn and applying skim coat of compound. the room that was scraped i removed all furniture and wrapped plastic on walls and floor. when we were done just roll everything up - relatively easy clean up. i would go with scraping and mudding. it looks better imo and you aren't lugging around sheets of drywall and trying to hang them on the ceiling - you need a helper or a lift machine.
Newbie
May 13, 2007
39 posts
12 upvotes
Lake of the Woods
I would agree scraping the popcorn off - typically very easy - then sand to remove any high spots and mud as necessary to get a smooth surface. Much cheaper imo. I typically box a fan into an open window (or door to the outside) in the room I'm working on that will force air out of the room continuously. I make sure it is fully enclosed in around the fan and the opening (cardboard works good). I've also got one fan permanently mound on a wood panel as I've done this quite often. Poly covering is also something I will do quite often so as to not have to clean up later. I think the cover up is quicker and easier.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jun 26, 2009
1765 posts
646 upvotes
GTA
tooluser wrote:
Oct 4th, 2017 9:15 pm
I would agree scraping the popcorn off - typically very easy - then sand to remove any high spots and mud as necessary to get a smooth surface. Much cheaper imo. I typically box a fan into an open window (or door to the outside) in the room I'm working on that will force air out of the room continuously. I make sure it is fully enclosed in around the fan and the opening (cardboard works good). I've also got one fan permanently mound on a wood panel as I've done this quite often. Poly covering is also something I will do quite often so as to not have to clean up later. I think the cover up is quicker and easier.
Are you using the fan for removing popcorn ceiling? This is basically dust free job. Empty Windex spray bottle, some warm water, spray the popcorn and remove with wide blade scraper. Keep the scraper on angle, to avoid scoring the drywall paper. Cheap dollar store sheets on the floor, roll them up and throw it in the garbage, when finished. Worked for me.
[OP]
Jr. Member
May 12, 2017
149 posts
77 upvotes
My real concern is if it is feasible doing this with the place already furnished? Of course furniture will be moved and floors protected but will the dust from the family room go all the way into the kitchen?

For those that have done this did you do it with the house vacant?

I am only looking at getting family, living, dining room and downstairs hallway done. I was quoted $1800 for this.

Just concerned about the amount of mess this reno will take.

Other option is to paint the stucco for the first time but I'm not sure if that is THAT much of a cleaner process...
Sr. Member
Jan 15, 2013
652 posts
72 upvotes
Mississauga
carter500500 wrote:
Oct 4th, 2017 10:00 pm
My real concern is if it is feasible doing this with the place already furnished? Of course furniture will be moved and floors protected but will the dust from the family room go all the way into the kitchen?

For those that have done this did you do it with the house vacant?

I am only looking at getting family, living, dining room and downstairs hallway done. I was quoted $1800 for this.

Just concerned about the amount of mess this reno will take.

Other option is to paint the stucco for the first time but I'm not sure if that is THAT much of a cleaner process...
What's the sq footage?

I got quoted so high that I'd rather just embark on this popcorn ceiling project myself this coming spring. I'll do it by segments and by rooms.

I'm most likely going to do this:
Deal Addict
User avatar
Mar 23, 2008
4440 posts
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Edmonton
Painting will make it more difficult to remove later,if you end up changing your mind... The water won’t be able to soak in. At least, that’s what I’ve heard.

C
[OP]
Jr. Member
May 12, 2017
149 posts
77 upvotes
Brookside05 wrote:
Oct 4th, 2017 11:58 pm
What's the sq footage?

I got quoted so high that I'd rather just embark on this popcorn ceiling project myself this coming spring. I'll do it by segments and by rooms.

Probably near 1000 sq ft.
Deal Addict
May 24, 2004
1730 posts
89 upvotes
CNeufeld wrote:
Oct 5th, 2017 12:04 am
Painting will make it more difficult to remove later,if you end up changing your mind... The water won’t be able to soak in. At least, that’s what I’ve heard.
Going through this process right now. Test to see whether it is painted. If it is, expect to put a ton of effort in scraping it off. Even then, you may contemplate whether it was worth it to try and scrape it or take the entire drywall down and install new.

If it isnt painted, It's cake. Grab a spray bottle, thoroughly wet a section of it and let it soak it for a couple minutes and take a metal scraper (thing that drywallers use to mud) and go to town with it. Just be careful to not tear into the paper backing.
Last edited by baymoe on Oct 5th, 2017 12:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Addict
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Nov 24, 2012
4776 posts
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Space
Why do people hate popcorn ceilings? I like how they hide all the imperfections lol
Jr. Member
Feb 20, 2017
175 posts
47 upvotes
Barrie, ON
I'm getting this done in my basement and it was cheaper to rip down the previous ceiling and just drywall
Deal Addict
Dec 6, 2006
3697 posts
674 upvotes
Toronto
Solsearchin1 wrote:
Oct 5th, 2017 6:24 am
Why do people hate popcorn ceilings? I like how they hide all the imperfections lol
They hide all the imperfections by becoming the giant nothing-but imperfections themselves.

I suppose when it's new, it's still ok. But once it gets old, when pieces fall out, yellowing, and missing patches due to un/installing light fixtures and what not, it gets ugly. And you can't really easily fix it.

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