How to Paint Wallpaper or Masonry Walls

Painting wallpaper or masonry is a little trickier than painting the usual surfaces, but it can be done.

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Use a roller with a heavy nap for painting highly textured walls.

Depending on a wallpaper’s makeup, it may not be easily removed without risking damage to the wall. Painting over it is possible but only if the wallpaper is clean, untextured, and not pulling away from the wall in any spots. Nonetheless, test a small, inconspicuous area first and try different kinds of paint if necessary.

To prep the wall, clean it with a sponge soaked in water. When the wall is dry, fill any small holes or dents with vinyl spackling compound. When that is dry, apply a shellac-based stain-blocking primer tinted to the shade of the paint and allow to dry.

Masonry walls, including brick and concrete, can also be painted. Clean them with a solution of TSP (tri-sodium phosphate) or a phosphate-free alternative; wear rubber gloves and eye protection while mixing and applying the solution. Rinse the area thoroughly.

Paint brick with a 1-inch-nap roller and concrete with a 3/8-inch. Prime the surface first with a latex primer made specifically for masonry. Paint with latex paint and, when dry, touch up as needed with a brush.


Interior Painting & Finishes

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