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Can You Tile Over Wallpaper?

If nature has taught us anything is that anything is possible; so can you tile over wallpaper, of course, you can, but is it advisable, of course not.

There are surfaces that we are prohibited from tiling upon, such as a glossy surface, over plywood, lead paint, and on top of the wallpaper.

Tiling on top of wallpaper is not a very good idea because you run the risk of having your tiles falling off once the wallpaper gathers moisture.

But there are other inevitable circumstances that will force you to tile over wallpaper, and as much as this is a possibility, there are some preparation processes that have to be done before you put up the tiles, the processes are undertaken to ensure that the tiles stay on the wall longer.

A good case scenario is when you purchase an older home that has very tight wallpaper and has proved difficult to remove.

So we are obviously not going to knock down the wall when there is a cheaper and much more effective way of getting around this problem.

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What you will, therefore, do is prepare the wall so that it can work with the adhesive which has to hold the tile to the wall.

Remember that a smooth and thin wallpaper will rarely bond with the glue or tile; you must, therefore, roughen the surface of the wallpaper with sandpaper.

Then using a piece of clean cloth, you will try to wipe the wall down to get rid of dust or the small particles of wallpaper that are stuck to it.

Now on the wall, you will apply a 1/8 inch thick layer of thinset across your prepared wall.

Now the process that follows is to put the tiles up on the wall making sure that it settles on the substance for it to bond with the wall.

NOTE: Check out my article about tiling on dry wall and also tiling on wood.

The remaining process is the standard procedure of installing tiles in your home.

How to get rid of stubborn wallpaper

Wallpapers are a welcome evolution to the process of applying and removing paint just to create a new feel or enhance your home décor.

And with the influx of all kinds of wallpapers in the market some of which are 3D, there also comes a major downside that might see you part with money to use in wall repair.

Wallpapers are not the easiest to remove and while some might come out they always leave the wall looking ugly as they come off with the paint.

Fret not, however, because solutions abound, you just need to find one that fits with your budget, examples of the wallpaper remover are such as the Wagner Steam Cleaner (which you can find on Amazon here), the machine naturally steam cleans without using chemicals.

It has, therefore, been fitted with a wallpaper removing attachment that will effectively lift off old wallpaper, just by using steam.

The machine also doubles up as a surface cleaner for your countertops, showers, and sinks.

And if you are tight on budget, there is a cheaper option the Zinsser long handle scrapper (Amazon link) that features a razor edge, to help in scrapping off the wallpaper.

So if you purchase the above unit, you will be provided with replacement blades in case the already fitted becomes blunt.

You can also choose to use a solvent, which is a less hectic option when compared to using a scrapper, the WP Chomp Super Concentrate Remover (Amazon link), works on wallpaper materials such as strippable grass or vinyl and all you need to do is to cut small slits into the paper, using a scoring tool, then mix the wallpaper stripper and pour it into a spray bottle and apply it on the surface of the wall.

You will then proceed to remove the facing, then reapply the wallpaper stripper to get rid of the backing and then use the provided scraper to remove the leftovers that are still stuck to the wall.

Given the effectiveness of the solvent, you might be worried about its toxicity nature; you, however, don’t need to worry because it is 5X less toxic and penetrates instantly making wallpaper stripping fast and easy.

There are so many other new wallpaper removal options most of which have not been covered in this article but are equally effective.

Type of easy peel and stick wallpapers

We all want that perfect modern look in our living rooms, bedrooms, and kitchen; we are, however, not saying that the white paint has been rendered traditional, on the contrary, you can blend your wallpaper with the original wall paint in your home so that you cover only a few parts of the home with wallpaper.

The wallpapers mentioned below can be cleaned, repositioned and you can reuse them as much as you like.

They are resistant to water and come in a broad spectrum of assorted shapes, prints, and colors.

For example, there are those that feature, the art deco designs that can be adopted for use in an office setting, there are those that come with geometric prints (like these on Amazon), bohemian, botanical, and the coastal prints like these ones (Amazon link).

All the above are to cater to the tastes and likes of different people and to be adopted for use in different settings and applications.

Remember that apart from the private homes, wallpapers are used in both the public and private office buildings, some are used in kids, nurseries, and there are those with prints that would complement a kitchen setting.

Wall preparation before Wallpaper

Putting up wallpaper doesn’t necessarily require professional help, because it is a simple do it yourself process.

So before, you customize your home with the perfect wallpaper, you have to prepare your painted wall, by washing them with a multi-surface soap then leave it to dry.

Add an acrylic primer, then let it dry first before hanging your wallpaper.

Most importantly is that you should ensure you have covered all the holes, dents, and cracks with vinyl sparkle to achieve a smooth finish.


The markets are now flooded with removable wallpapers, giving you the option of adopting different prints that you can change occasionally to achieve different looks and suit different occasions.

There are also many products that can be used to remove the stubborn wallpaper so that you don’t have to tile over it, but if the wallpaper is too tight and proves hard to come out then you can go ahead and tile over it.