Popcorn ceilings have fallen out of favor lately, so removing popcorn is on a lot of peoples minds. The ironic thing is that popcorn ceilings were chosen by builders and remodelers often simply to cover up cosmetic problems in a ceiling. Of course the biggest problem encountered with popcorn ceiling removal is that it’s almost impossible to get a smooth ceiling after all of the scraping needed to complete the project. Another big problem is that if your home was built prior to the 80′s the popcorn could contain asbestos, a cancer causing agent. So, let’s discuss how to remove your popcorn ceiling, and an alternative to cover popcorn ceilings.
First, if your home is older, you’ll want to have the popcorn tested for asbestos. Take a spray bottle filled with water and soak a small area in 4 different places on your ceiling. Scrape an inch of popcorn off each area and have it tested by a lab. If you have asbestos, you’ll need to have a professional company remove the popcorn, or choose to drywall over it, or cover it with ceiling tiles.
If asbestos isn’t a problem, you can start removing it by the simple method you used to take the samples. Soak the ceiling in 2 ft sections and scrape with a utility knife. As you can imagine, this is quite messy so you’ll want to remove all of your furniture first and lay down plastic to collect all the popcorn that comes off your ceiling as you work.
Once the popcorn is removed you’ll need to sand the ceiling, filling in any areas with spackle that aren’t even.
Now if that sounds like too much work, styrofoam, faux tin, or tin tiles are a great option as they can be installed directly over the popcorn ceiling. Tiles are much easier to handle than drywall, and they can be installed in a matter of hours. Take a look at some ceilings our customers have installed to cover their popcorn ceilings and take the hassles out of removing popcorn: