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Home » Blog » A Message From The Owner: Popcorn Ceiling Removal

A Message From The Owner: Popcorn Ceiling Removal

By George Apap, President of George Apap Painting Inc.

Are you looking to get rid of your popcorn ceiling in Dutchess, Putnam, Westchester, Orange, Ulster, Fairfield, and Litchfield counties? Why did contractors even install popcorn ceilings in the first place? The simplest way to answer is the process was a very inexpensive way to finish ceilings. Apparently at one time people found it attractive or at least interesting and they didn’t mind the appearance. Today very few people find popcorn ceilings attractive and many people that have popcorn ceilings want them smooth. If you are considering having your popcorn ceilings removed, it is extremely important to first have the popcorn tested. Asbestos was commonly used as an ingredient in popcorn for many years. If asbestos is in fact present, all is not lost. We won’t be able to remove the popcorn at first, we’ll simply drywall over the popcorn and safely encapsulate it.

Once we determine it is safe to remove it, we can do so in two ways –  the best method depends on the condition of the ceiling. If the ceiling is very soft, we may be able to use a special vacuum sander and sand the texture off the ceiling. It’s not easy, and it’ll definitely be a shoulder workout, but it is the cleanest way to do it as more than 90% of the debris gets contained directly into the vacuum. Regardless of the method we choose we still need to completely mask and protect the entire contents of the room. Further, the ceiling still will require a skim coat before priming. The vacuum sanding method works well only on weak, unpainted popcorn.

Unfortunately many popcorn ceilings have been painted over and often times more than once. This hardens the surface and reduces the effectiveness of the sander. Typically, we are still able to remove popcorn with a wet method. We still need to fully protect the contents of the room as this method although wet is still messy. We utilize a sprayer to apply warm water mixed with wallpaper removing agents to moisten the surface. In time, typically the product will loosen the bond of the popcorn to the drywall. This allows us to scrape away the popcorn from the drywall. Once the popcorn is removed, we can apply a skim coat before painting.

Rarely, but sometimes the popcorn has been painted over too many times and it resists both the sanding and the chemicals. In this case, we install new drywall directly over the popcorn the same as we do if asbestos is present in the drywall.

If you’re looking to get rid of or repair your popcorn ceiling, we can help! In most instances our experts are able to repair areas and blend the texture to restore the popcorn. If you’re in Dutchess, Putnam, Westchester, Orange, Ulster, Fairfield, and Litchfield counties and interested in removal or repair of your popcorn ceiling, please contact the experts at George Apap Painting!

Are you looking to paint your vinyl siding in Dutchess, Putnam, Westchester, Orange, Ulster, Fairfield, and Litchfield counties. Many people feel that they are stuck with their vinyl siding color and that vinyl is not paintable. Exactly the opposite is true. I will go as far as to say that vinyl paints even better than wood if done correctly. The most critical aspects for painting vinyl are the preparation, the type of paint, and the color.

Based on my decades of painting experience in Dutchess, Putnam, Westchester, Orange, Ulster, Fairfield, and Litchfield counties, I’ve found that vinyl surfaces paint better than wood because the paint actually lasts longer on vinyl. Wood is full of moisture and eventually leads to paint peeling. When done correctly, paint doesn’t peel off vinyl, it will eventually fade away.

As with most painting projects, preparation is key. Experienced painters know to remove mold and mildew from all surfaces, especially exterior surfaces. The real trick to painting vinyl surfaces is to remove oxidation. Most detergents will remove oxidation. We find Simple Green and TSP to be very effective cleaners. How do you know if the oxidation has been successfully removed? Wait for it to dry and run your hand across the surface. If you see a residue that looks like caulk, keep washing.

Picking the type of paint is not hard. Most premium acrylic paints are suitable for vinyl and many of them claim to be able to go directly on vinyl. While they may be and probably are right, I don’t like taking chances. I have only one chance to get this right, so I want a top quality acrylic primer. If the first coat fails, it is incredibly difficult to remediate the problem. I would rather air on the side of caution and use the best primer we can. I feel that the type of finish paint is of secondary importance because most premium paints will be fine. The difference is some paints will resist fading longer than others, but I feel that they will all adhere well. One big thing to avoid is oil primer and oil-based paints in general. Just because they are harder to use doesn’t make them better and for vinyl oil is a HUGE no no.

This is one of the rare instances when color really matters and can be absolutely critical to the success of painting any vinyl surface. Typically lighter colors will perform much better than darker ones. Dark colors could be problematic because they absorb more heat and will cause the vinyl to warp and even buckle. Once warping happens, it cannot be undone by applying a lighter color – you need to replace the siding to fix it. Some manufacturers have a line of vinyl safe colors that are designed to prevent this from happening. George Apap Painting helps homeowners in Dutchess, Putnam, Westchester, Orange, Ulster, Fairfield, and Litchfield counties get the vinyl painting they need.

Paint can be applied to vinyl with any method. Brush and a fine nap roller is great. We have found that airless spray can deliver a near factory quality on vinyl. Contact George Apap Painting to learn more about painting your vinyl in Dutchess, Putnam, Westchester, Orange, Ulster, Fairfield, and Litchfield counties.