How to wash off the whitewash from the ceiling?

How to wash off the whitewash from the ceiling?

Ceiling repairs usually start with removing the old coating, but not all materials are easily dismantled. For example, it takes a lot of time and effort to remove whitewash. This is a messy and time-consuming job, although not particularly difficult if you know the subtleties and follow the plan..


The surface treated with whitewash is extremely poor at absorbing glue and paint, which makes it impossible to carry out repairs without first removing the old coating. So in any case, you will first have to wash off the whitewash from the ceiling, and only then proceed to applying a new decorative layer. You should not take the risk and think that in your case everything will go wrong. Materials will be spoiled and time wasted.

Although in some cases you can actually leave the ceiling whitewashed.

These options include the following situations:

  • installation of a suspended or stretch ceiling;
  • applying a new layer of whitewash.

In the latter case, you will have to choose a similar material to the one that already covers the surface. It is prohibited to use different whitewashing options. In any case, it will be necessary to remove all existing contamination from the surface..

There are also options when the removal of the old decorative coating is required:

  • the presence of mold and other microorganisms on the surface;
  • use of water-based paint in the process of repair;
  • use for facing polystyrene foam boards that need to be glued.

Types of whitewash

There are several types of whitewash. Before starting work on its elimination, it is necessary to determine the type of material with which you will have to work..

Each of the options can be removed in different ways..

  • Chalk whitewash easy to identify. To do this, you just need to run your finger along the ceiling. If the finger is painted white, then chalk is present in the basis of this material. This coating is relatively easy to remove..
  • Lime – another material from which whitewashing is made. It is not smeared: if you run your hand over it, it will remain clean. It will be more difficult to get rid of lime whitewash than chalky.

If the hand is not painted from the ceiling, then it may be painted rather than covered with lime wash. The paint is removed in other ways, the methods described below will not help. It will need to be torn off in a dry way; strong solutions are also produced, which are used specifically for paint.


For further work on dismantling the whitewash from the ceiling, tools will be required, which it is advisable to prepare in advance:

  • spatula and tray for it, can be replaced with a container with a scraper;
  • spray;
  • foam sponges, which can be replaced with rollers or, at worst, with rags;
  • small hammer;
  • water (preferably warm) and the container in which it will be contained;
  • a stepladder, you can use a high table or other suitable structure;
  • films and newspapers to protect furniture, floors and other interior elements;
  • personal protective equipment, which includes gloves, special glasses, headgear and respirator.

Removal tools

Washing off the whitewash from the ceiling is still an urgent problem, which usually seriously slows down the process of renovation indoors. Humanity seems to have thrown all its forces into solving this problem. And then how else can you explain the presence of a large number of funds that cope with this task in no time??

  • Soap solution, which can be used instead of regular warm water. Such a tool is more suitable for removing a small layer of decorative material. To prepare it, you need to take 2 tbsp. tablespoons of ordinary laundry soap, previously grated. This component can be replaced with a soap-based powder. Also take 5 tablespoons of baking soda and dilute it all in 10 liters of hot water. The resulting cooled and strained solution is rubbed onto the surface to be treated with a sponge. We leave the whitewash for swelling, after which it can be easily removed with a spatula.

  • Paste can be made on the basis of flour or starch. The prepared gummy liquid is applied to the ceiling using a roller that helps to cope with the painting or a sponge. It is important not to miss the moment when the paste starts to set. You need to quickly grab the spatula and remove the old coating.

  • Glue is at the heart of the next trick, which is popular with builders. It is applied to old newspapers, which are then applied to the ceiling. It is important to keep one corner of the newspaper dry. We pull this corner, and the newspaper leaves along with the old decorative cover. It is better to use this tool to remove a small layer of whitewash..

  • Special construction product, which is sold in most hardware stores. It has an adhesive base and is applied to the surface by spraying. Wait until the mixture is absorbed and dry. After that, the whitewash can be easily removed with a spatula..

A large number of products from different brands are presented on the shelves of construction stores. We will consider some of them below..

  • Another solution that can be created at home is based on vinegar and any foam for the bathroom. Surfactants must be present in the foam base. You will need to take five liters of water, a tablespoon of regular table vinegar and a few caps of detergent.

Using any of these products is much better and more effective than just washing (rinsing off) the whitewash with plain water. Not to mention the dry method of stripping off the whitewash, the process of which is associated with a lot of dust and debris..

How to shoot correctly?

It is necessary to wash off the old whitewash from the surface in several stages. If you adhere to the work plan, you can reduce the time spent, avoid common mistakes and get a decent result..

Room preparation

  1. The essence of this stage is to free the room from furniture, equipment and other items. It is advisable to endure everything. In the future, you will not have to waste time trying to wash it all from dust, dirt and, in fact, the whitewash itself..
  2. If it is not possible to free the room, then you can cover the objects with a film, to fix which you will need construction tape. In order to already surely protect interior items from pollution, you need to put newspapers or large sheets of paper under the film.
  3. On the threshold of the room, you must put a wide wet rag. In the future, it will be easy to clean off the dirt from the shoes when you need to leave the room being repaired. This trick turns out to be very useful in practice..

Organization of the workflow

If done correctly, it will help to quickly remove the old decorative layer, and will allow you to get a good result in the end.

  1. In small containers, for example, buckets, it is necessary to prepare warm and cold water.
  2. The water can be replaced with another means by which the whitewash removal is carried out.
  3. It is better to take a sprayer with a capacity of 0.5 liters. It will be more convenient to work.
  4. Keep the water and spray nozzle close to you so that water can be easily drawn up as you use it.

The working process

This is the main stage of our renovation.

  1. Standing on a stepladder or any other structure, spray the selected product or water onto the surface. When applying the product, gaps should be avoided, but it is also impossible to wet the ceiling abundantly..
  2. After 10 minutes, when the material is sufficiently saturated and swollen, it is necessary to repeat the application of the product / water.
  3. Now with a spatula, you can clean the ceiling from whitewashing with your own hands, without the involvement of outside help.
  4. Whitewash should be removed in small, damp areas.

The final stage

It consists in washing the ceiling and checking the quality of the work done.

  1. After finishing work with a spatula, rinse the ceiling with warm water using a large sponge. The sponge must be squeezed out so that dirty water does not run off the walls, and puddles do not form on the floor..
  2. We draw on the dried ceiling with a clean and dry hand, it should not turn white, which will indicate good work.

Let’s reveal a little secret that will come in handy if you failed to make your once whitewashed ceiling perfectly clean, and there are still traces on it. Before finishing your imperfectly cleaned ceiling, you need to treat it with a special primer, which is suitable just for such cases..

There are also dry methods for removing whitewash, which we must mention.. The essence of such techniques is to dismantle a dry coating that has not been previously treated with either water or special compounds. It will be extremely difficult to remove it. Often, after the completion of repair work, whitewash dust is found in the most secluded and unexpected places..

If this does not scare you, then it is better to replace the spatula with a sander. There will be a lot of dust, so you need to carefully cover the floor, windows and doors with construction or plastic wrap. The room is compulsorily exempt from all items. Initially, coarse-grained paper is fixed on the machine, which will allow you to remove large elements of whitewash. After that, fine-grained paper is used..

Another method is based on using a washing vacuum cleaner, we recommend cutting it off immediately. The main reason for this categorization is the high probability of failure of expensive equipment. In this case, the risk is unjustified..

The following method is suitable for thick coatings, otherwise it is hardly used. To implement it, you need to have a small hammer and a spatula on hand. The surface is tapped with a hammer. The force should be small, you need to pay attention to each area.

After such manipulations, the whitewash will easily move away from the base, it will only be necessary to pry it with a spatula. It is better to enlist the help of an assistant who will stand below with the container. The whitewash will immediately fall into the bucket / basin, while creating a minimum of dust and dirt.

The whitewash can stick to the plaster, which will show up after the completion of the work. It is not necessary to clean all the plastered areas. It is necessary to identify areas that are not firmly adhered to the surface, they will have to be cleaned.

To determine the strength of the coating, you will need to tap it. The areas that are in doubt will have to be disposed of. For this, the already familiar spatula is suitable. If the plaster holds well and is difficult to remove, it can be left on..


We have already mentioned about special formulations, but I would like to study the manufacturers in more detail.

Indeed, in a hardware store you can get confused by the abundance of brands.

  • Quelyd Dissoucol or Metylan – two products that are designed to easily remove whitewash and remove old wallpaper. They are characterized by good penetrating power, therefore they can be used even for thick layers. Produced in the form of concentrated solutions that are diluted in water.
  • Probel products designed to work with chalk and gypsum whitewash, good dust removal from surfaces. They are professional concentrates, odorless and colorless, with a neutral pH level. Prized for the absence of streaks.
  • Alfa-20 tool designed to remove all types of whitewash. Also, this composition does an excellent job of removing various kinds of plaque and cement dust. The concentrate has an apple scent and is colored green.

This product is based on acid, therefore it is potent and requires the use of personal protective equipment. But in terms of efficiency, it has no equal. In the process of work, streaks are not formed, and various kinds of contamination are removed from the surface (rust, drips, stains of unknown origin).

Although these funds will cost more than traditional methods of preparing solutions, they are concentrated enough, so one bottle will be enough to process a large area. It is easy to work with such solutions, and the result is more effective compared to homemade products. The choice is always yours.

Tips & Tricks

  • If a white mess flows over the spatula during cleaning, it means that you managed not only to wet, but to blur the whitewash. Now you need to wait a little, because there is too much water, and it should be absorbed.
  • If a lot of dust is generated when trying to remove the whitewash, you will need to moisten the surface a little more..
  • Do not be lazy to take furniture out of the room in which renovation work will be carried out. Believe me, it will be much more difficult to remove traces of whitewash and it will take a lot of time..
  • It is better to substitute a special container under the spatula, into which the removed material will immediately fall, such a trick will rid the room of dirt and clean the room without any extra effort.
  • It is better to divide the working area into several working zones: while one is soaked, on the other, you can remove the already swollen whitewash.

Checking the thickness of the decorative layer should be carried out even before dismantling it. This will allow you to more efficiently select the means to remove it..

  • It is better to test the chosen tool or method on a small area of ​​the surface..
  • It is better to apply water or a special product in several stages..
  • When choosing a tool, the price for it can speak of the degree of concentration and effectiveness..
  • It is not worth removing the whitewash to concrete, but you still have to remove the weak plaster.

    Let the dismantling of the whitewash not seem like a difficult job to you, the performance of which can only be done by professionals. In the estimate, this work turns out to be very expensive, although it can be done independently, without any experience..

    For information on how to remove whitewash from the ceiling, see the next video..

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