How to Prepare Walls for Wallpaper

Preparations are the key to get the perfect result when wallpapering, it might sound boring and seem to require a lot of time, but there are no shortcuts if you want a good result. And that is what we all want, right? The rule is that the wall should be smooth, clean and dry.

Find details below on different surfaces and how to get your walls prepped and ready.

How to Handle Different Surfaces

Step by Step Guide on how to prepare walls for wallpaper

Clearing the workspace is best to start with, to give yourself the best conditions possible. Move large furniture to the center of the room, remove everything that is on the wall you intend to wallpaper, and also prepare all the tools necessary. If you have to remove old wallpaper, you will find a guide about that here.

  1. Smoothing the Wall:

    • Remove anything protruding:
      This includes nails, screws, staples, and any other hardware sticking out of the wall. Switch off the main power in the room and remove the socket/switch covers

    • Prepare by the surface of your wall: Depending on the surface of your walls it might be handled differently. Read our surface guide above.

  2. Applying Primer (optional):

    • To avoid any visible joints on the wallpaper, it is recommended to prime the wall in the base color of the wallpaper. You only need to prime where the joints of the wallpaper end up.

  3. Wash the wall with a damp cloth:

    • Wipe down the wall with a damp cloth: Use warm water and a mild detergent solution to remove any dirt or dust. Rinse the wall with clean water and allow it to dry completely. This ensures a clean surface for the wallpaper.

Once you've completed these steps, your wall will be ready for wallpaper installation.

Learn more from our videos on how to prepare for wallpaper or head over to next step on how to wallpaper.

Step 1

Cover the floor with cardboard or plastic dust sheet.

Step 2

Remove nails and screws.

Step 3

Switch off the main power in the room and remove the socket/switch covers.

Step 4

Spackle any holes or rough areas.

Step 5

Sand and smooth the surface.

Step 6

Use a triangular scraper for large holes and scratch until you reach solid surface. Spackle and cover the hole with fiberglass tape and spackle again. Let it dry before sanding.

Step 7

Wash painted surfaces with a damp sponge.

Step 8

Paint the wall before wallpapering if there are too significant color differences.