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How to Get Peeling Paint Off a Ceiling

Updated February 21, 2017

Peeling paint on a ceiling is not only an ugly eyesore. It can also signify a larger problem, such as a water leak or other structural flaw. In addition, peeling paint can fall from the ceiling, which is not safe for pets or children, who might ingest the flakes of falling paint. Peeling paint on a ceiling should be removed and the ceiling repaired as soon as possible.

Protect the area. Cover the floor underneath the peeling paint with a tarp or old sheet. This will protect your floor and also make cleaning up easier.

Set up your ladder underneath the peeling paint. Put on goggles to protect your eyes before you start scraping.

Scrape the peeling paint off the ceiling with your paint scraper. Carefully insert the edge of the scraper underneath the peeling paint and see if you can peel it off in one strip. If not, you will have to scrape away at it.

Loosen the paint with a heat gun if it is not coming off easily. Be very careful not to damage the ceiling itself.

Sand down the remaining edges after you've removed the peeling paint.

Tip

Use a putty knife to remove peeling paint in corners or smaller areas.

Warning

When painting, make sure the area is well-ventilated.

Things You'll Need

  • Ladder
  • Tarps or old sheets
  • Paint scraper
  • Goggles
  • Heat gun (optional)
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint and painting tools
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