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Removing Old Wallpaper
If, however, the surface has previously been papered, the old paper will require removal. This is done by thoroughly soaking with water, after which the paper can be easily removed by means of a painter’s scraper.
Removing Old Distemper
If old-fashioned whiting distemper is present, it must be washed off by scrubbing with a stiff brush and the use of water, preferably hot. This is rather a messy process unless it is carried out in the right way.
Taking one fair-sized section at a time, it should be well soaked so as to loosen the distemper. Then the softened material should be removed by means of a sweeping motion of the brush (an old whitewash brush is best) and the brush is then scraped out on the edge of a bucket. This process is repeated until the wall is bare down to the plaster.
If a really washable distemper or true water paint has been previously used it will be sufficient to remove merely the loose portions, and the rest may be left on.
When this has been done, the wall should be allowed to become thoroughly dry. Sandpapering and dusting are next done, and then painting can proceed.
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