Select Smaller-Sized Tools Ideal for Women to Use Dear Pat: I am a recent widow. My husband promised the kids a deck, so I have to build it myself. I am petite, so his shovels, posthole digger, etc., are hard to handle. Are there smaller tools for women? — Karen W. Dear Karen: With the proper …Read more. Install Your own Interior Louvered Window Shutters Dear Pat: I would like to have more privacy at my windows and also block neighbors' floodlights at night. I would like to use louvered shutters and mini-blinds. How should I install them and on which windows? — Keri G. Dear Keri: Many …Read more. How to Install Plastic PEX Plumbing Dear Pat: I am converting my old garage into a room for more living area. It has copper plumbing now. I need to add a wet bar and am thinking of using PEX. Is this a good idea, and how do I install it? — Leslie A. Dear Leslie: Making a garage …Read more. Soundproof Your Existing or New Home Dear Pat: We hear a lot of road noise in our house and noise from room to room from the kids. What can we do to make it more soundproof? When we build a new house soon, what soundproofing features should we include? — Michelle A. Dear Michelle:…Read more.more articles
Avoid Common Wallpapering Problems in a Kitchen
Dear Pat: We just moved into an older house and hung wallpaper in the kitchen. It looked good for about a month, but now it has bubbles and is coming loose at the edges? Did we perhaps get bad wallpaper? — Sheila R.
Dear Sheila: If the problems occurred in only one small area, it may have been a bad roll of wallpaper. If it is happening in many spots and along many edges, the possibility of having gotten many bad rolls of wallpaper is not likely.
The salesman and sales literature makes hanging wallpaper sound like a simpler task than it actually is. It is extremely important to follow all the manufacturer's installation instructions to the most minute detail. The first time you hang wallpaper, don't expect it to look like a professional installation.
The kitchen is a particularly difficult room to wallpaper. Kitchens generally have varying levels of humidity. When cooking a large meal, tremendous amounts of moisture are given off into the air. Also, there may be a light film of grease on the walls from years of cooking. This can be difficult to clean off thoroughly before hanging the wallpaper.
A very common error many homeowners make is selecting the wallpaper they prefer and then buying the most inexpensive adhesive on sale. It may be excellent quality adhesive, but some types of wallpaper materials and finishes require specific types of adhesive. Read the wallpaper manufacturer's instructions carefully before buying the adhesive.
The bubbles under the wallpaper may have been caused by several problems, which you should be able to avoid if and when you redo it. The most probable cause is not allowing the wallpaper to relax adequately before hanging it on the walls.
When the wallpaper first gets wet from the adhesive, it expands (relaxes) for several minutes. This is typical for most wallpaper materials. If you put it up on the wall too soon, it will continue to relax after you think you have it flat and taut. This continued expansion, even though slight, is enough to create bubbles.
Be sure not to let it relax for too long a time period. If the wallpaper rests in that very wet condition for too long, its layers may begin to delaminate. This will not be noticeable until the wallpaper is up for a long while and it is washed. The top layer may pull loose.
Improper surface preparation may also have contributed to your problems. It is important for the wallpaper to have a clean, smooth surface to adhere to. Kitchen walls need to be washed down thoroughly to remove any grease film. If you fixed any bad drywall joints, vacuum and wash off all drywall compound dust. An ammonia solution is a good final cleaner.
When the wall is clean and thoroughly dry, paint it with primer or sizing. Sizing is similar to a primer, and it also seals the wall surface. This makes the adhesive dry more uniformly. It also makes it much easier to clean off the old adhesive if you choose to remove the wallpaper in the future.
Tools and material required: ladder, straight edge, scissors, razor knife, water pail, brushes, squeegee, primer, cleaner, adhesive, wallpaper
Send your questions to Here's How, 6906 Royalgreen Dr., Cincinnati, OH 45244 or visit www.dulley.com. To find out more about Pat Logan and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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