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How To Remove a Faux Finish

Many faux finishes are painted on the walls using faux finishing tools such as sponges and brushes. These technically are not removed to get rid of them — they are covered. Other faux finishes such as granite need to be removed to create a smooth surface for another finish. Few tools are required to remove a faux finish.

Things You'll Need:

  • Shop Vac
  • Drop Cloths
  • Painters Tape
  • Palm Sander
  • 100 Grit Sandpaper (For Palm Sanders)
  • Plastic Drop Cloths
  • Dust Mask
  • Safety Glasses
  • 100 Grit Drywall Sandpaper

Remove all furniture from the room, or cover any furniture that cannot be removed. Cover the floor with drop cloths. Hang plastic drops over doorways and secure the plastic to the door frames with painters tape.

Put on safety glasses as well as a dust mask, since removing any textured faux finish will create a lot of dust. Place a piece of sandpaper onto the pad of the palm sander. Some palm sanders use peel and stick sandpaper, and others use what is called hook and loop.

Place the dust catcher onto the palm sander. Most of these sanders come with an attachment that is placed onto the sander to help eliminate some of the dust in the air. It will not eliminate all of it.

Turn the sander on and hold it to the wall. The rapidly spinning sandpaper will begin smoothing the surface. Do not hold the sander in one spot for too long. The sandpaper can grind through the paper on on the drywall. Sand all of the walls in the entire room. Change the paper often on the sander.

Use the drywall sandpaper near the ceiling, the baseboard, and around door and window trim. The orbital sander cannot reach into the corners at the ceiling. If you sand too close to your wood trim with the palm sander, it will scratch the finish. Use your shop vac to clean the dust from the entire room.


To remove or cover up a painted faux finish, use a good quality interior primer.

Using a sander instead of a scraper will help you to avoid gouging the walls.

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