How to Remove Styrofoam Ceiling Tiles

When you're tired of your current styrofoam ceiling tiles, and you'd like to replace them with a new design, you'll have no issues removing your current styrofoam ceiling tiles yourself with a few materials and a little bit of elbow grease.

What You'll Need to Remove Styrofoam Ceiling Tiles

  • Dustsheets 
  • Gloves 
  • Goggles 
  • Face mask 
  • Ladder 
  • Wide scraper 
  • Hammer 
  • Heat gun or wallpaper steamer 
  • Sandpaper 
  • Polyfilla 

How to Remove Styrofoam Ceiling Tiles Step-by-Step

Step 1: Prepare

Removing ceiling tiles can be messy, so you should prepare your room by removing as much furniture as you can and covering what cannot be moved with a dustsheet. After you've prepared your room, you'll need to prepare yourself too! Wear long sleeves, goggles, gloves, and a mask to protect yourself while digging into this messy removal process.

Step 2: Start Removing Tiles

Set up your ladder in one of your corners and get under the tile with your wide scraper as much as possible. When you feel like you can't get it any further in on your own, use the hammer to tap the scraper to get it as far under the tile as possible to break the connection between the adhesive and the tiles. Jiggling the scraper up and down can be a great way to help move the process along, but be careful not to scratch or damage your ceiling! Once you start removing tiles, always carry your ladder with you so you're not overreaching because you could hurt yourself.

Step 3: Clearing the Remaining Adhesive

Once you've removed all the tiles, you're halfway through removing everything! You will likely still have little blobs of adhesive stuck to the ceiling that need to come down. The best way to do this is to use the heat gun or wallpaper steamer about 12-15cm from the surface to warm each blob to make it easy to scrape off without damaging your ceiling. Focus on a few small areas at a time and clean up your scraper to remove any excess glue before you move on to another section.

Step 4: Assess Your Ceiling Damage

Once all the blobs of adhesive are out, take a moment to examine your ceiling and assess the damage. No matter how careful you may have been, removing the tiles and glue has likely removed some of the ceiling plaster. Note what areas need to be fixed, then dab a little Polyfilla into any gaps or cracks left behind. If the ceiling tiles are left behind a ceiling that's in horrible shape, you may have to re-plaster your whole ceiling.

Step 5: Finish Up

Once you've removed and cleared up the damage left behind by the removal process, sand down the areas you fixed with Polyfilla to make sure they're nice and smooth. Once those areas have been sanded down, wipe down your ceiling with sugar soap or a similar cleaning material to ensure the surface is spotless and ready to hold your new decorative ceiling tiles!

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