Wallpaper Steamer

We've bought a new home and every room has wallpaper which I want to take off. The ceiling also has woodchip (or whatever that horrible stuff is called!)

So I'm about to buy a steamer but prices are from £20 to £150 and I don't understand what makes one better than the next. Any recommendations or things to look out for? I'd be happy to pay more money to get one that does a good job and will last but I don't know if it's necessary.

Thanks for any advice :)
I love surprises!


  • suisidevw
    suisidevw Posts: 2,256 Forumite
    I have one similar to this and works perfectly, no complaints. http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/240V-Earlex-Super-Steamer-Wallpaper-Stripper_W0QQitemZ350295594608QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_DefaultDomain_3?hash=item518f3e9670

    Woodship has to be scraped off doesn't it, steaming doesn't work?!
  • Astec
    Astec Posts: 515 Forumite
    I had 5/6 layers on the walls and woodchip on the ceiling. Shut the doors and windows, worked on the walls and the ceiling loosened itself as the steam rises.
  • wallbash
    wallbash Posts: 17,775 Forumite
    will last but I don't know if it's necessary.

    You only need it to last until you get rid of the wallpaper in one house.

    Buy a cheap one,
    And shut the doors and windows . will be more efficient.

    I have removed wood chip with a steamer.More of a problem , wallpaper painted with gloss paint :eek:
  • ormus
    ormus Posts: 42,714 Forumite
    we bought a cheap one many yrs ago now. its still doing the rounds amongst the family!
    (both families). i think it cost about 25/30 quid?
    god knows how many rooms its stripped now. must nearly be at the hundred mark!
    Get some gorm.
  • paddy's_mum
    paddy's_mum Posts: 3,977 Forumite
    I've been Money Tipped!
    Contact Earlex themselves - 01483 454666 - they always used to do reconditioned units for about a third less than the shop price and even with the delivery, it's still cheaper. You also have the reassurance of knowing that they have been checked and tested in the very factory that makes them.

    If you, or a friend, are within reach of their premises at Slyfield, Guildford they will allow you to pick one up at reception.

    There are basically only three grades. Expensive professional ones, in a robust chromed steel frame with a bigger tank (equals longer steaming time without refilling when time is money) a cheap and cheerful one at around £20 which is just for wallpaper or the basic one with a few extras (various nozzles, head for spot cleaning carpets etc) which retail at around the £40-50 mark. Me? I've long ago lost or got rid of all the add-ons and now have just the basic steamer for wallpaper.

    However, before buying one, have a word around friends and family. Earlex have made well over a million of them and it's a rare family that hasn't got one kicking around in the shed or garage.

    The two commonest problems with them are both down to customer mis-use. People either tread on the steam plate (the rectangular piece that you hold against the wall) as they get down off the ladder or they somehow hit and snap off the threaded nozzle where the hose joins the kettle. The steamplate can be replaced but the coupling can't be and unfortunately in that case, nothing remains but to throw the whole unit away.

    Hope that helps.
  • ormus
    ormus Posts: 42,714 Forumite

    yes thats the earlex one.
    argos 25 quid.
    Get some gorm.
  • maggie111
    maggie111 Posts: 1,130 Forumite
    Thanks for all your help, especially the advice on how to get a reconditioned model.

    I really appreciate it and certainly realise that I don't need to spend a lot of money to get good value!
    I love surprises!
  • Ticklemouse
    Ticklemouse Posts: 5,030 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    I have an Earlex one that I paid about £24 years ago - been used on all types of paper including woodchip and is still going strong. I wouldn't be with out it. It's also very useful for defrosting the freezers quickly :)
  • Another supporter of Earlex.Got one from Homebase during a sale.

    Excellent machine.The small attachments are well worth paying extra for i.e for small areas under radiators/around windows.

    I slightly disagree with others(well someone has to) regarding windows being closed.I always have one open for the excess steam to escape from the room and its useful to hang the steamer plate out of the window whilst scraping otherwise the place becomes a 'steam room'.
  • wallbash
    wallbash Posts: 17,775 Forumite
    Only slightly disagree , thats no fun :D

    My view is the room is completely empty . Or should be , makes decorating so much easier. Steam can't harm anything , apart from the wallpaper paste .

    Yes the room becomes a steam room , might make the other walls give up their wallpaper quicker.
    I normally have a large washing up bowl to stick the 'plate' in when not using .
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