A few decades ago, acoustical or “popcorn” ceilings were all the rage. These textured ceilings adorned the homes especially built during the 1960s or the 1970s. But nowadays, they have long been out of fashion because people consider them as tacky and ugly, and they mostly prefer the classic smooth ceiling finish. Fortunately, popcorn ceilings can be removed. Many commercial painters near me also do professional removals of popcorn ceilings.
There are more significant and urgent reasons why people want to have these popcorn ceilings removed, aside from aesthetic issues. Early formulations and treatments of popcorn ceilings may contain asbestos and/or lead. As you may have known, exposure to asbestos can seriously impair one's health. Since the Clean Air Act was enforced, the use of asbestos and lead as popcorn ceiling materials has declined significantly. Popcorn ceilings may have remained in many homes and commercial properties that were mostly built before the 1980s.
It is possible to remove the popcorn by yourself. If you had to DIY it, luckily you don't need to use any harsh chemicals for this. Simply wet the popcorn completely. Make sure that it is completely soaked with moisture so that it can be removed more easily. While the popcorn is still moist, scrape it off using a wide-bladed putty knife. If you have a pump sprayer, it will make the job a lot easier. Just make sure you wear the proper clothing and gear to avoid the texture from falling directly above your head!
Once you have scraped all the popcorn, there will likely be some damaged areas to be repaired. For instance, if there are noticeable holes, scratches, cracks and gouges, use a drywall compound and a putty knife to fill these flaws and smooth them. Let the drywall compound dry, then scrape the excess.
Although a primer is not necessary for painting a ceiling, it enhances the adhesion of the topcoat to the surface. There are many types of primers in the market, and if you plan to prime your ceiling it's better to know which type of primer the best for it is. Ceilings tend to suffer those dreaded water stains as a result of roof or plumbing leakage, so the most appropriate primer for this is the stain-blocking primer, which helps in preventing the water stains from bleeding through the ceiling.
Popcorn ceiling removal is indeed a messy task. Again, it is possible to remove the popcorn ceiling all by yourself, but a proper preparation should be made. There should also be the right equipment and gear to protect yourself from the debris as well as possible exposure to asbestos and lead while removing the “popcorn” texture from the ceiling. Not to forget, of course, is the appropriate cleanup and disposal after the removal.
While the job is not at all complex, it does require a great deal of experience and skill to achieve the results that look good and smooth. Not only popcorn ceiling is a messy job, it can also pose health risks since it may contain lead or asbestos. It's time-consuming too, to boot.
The alternative, then, is to hire a professional. And that may be a better move. There are also commercial painters near me who also do other services like popcorn ceiling removal. They have the skills, the experience, the right equipment and they know how to properly clean up and dispose of the debris.