Removing polystyrene tiles

When we bought our house a year ago, we were left with the daunting task of removing polystyrene tiles throughout the entire house. It is a 3 bedroom semi-detached house with a cloakroom and upstairs bathroom and every single room along with the hallway in the house had polystyrene tiles on the ceiling. The rooms that had to have the ceiling tiles removed were: downstairs hallway, living room, dining room, kitchen, cloakroom, bedroom 1-3, upstairs hallway and bathroom.

Why do you have to get rid of polystyrene ceiling tiles?

A long time ago they were fashion, cheap and easy to apply. As time went on, it was found that polystyrene is highly flammable and would cause a health and safety risk should the house catch fire. We were aware of this when we decided to buy the house and it was even mentioned when we had the house surveyed.

If you decide to keep the polystyrene ceiling tiles, then you might compromise you home insurance and will be liable for any damage should a fire occur. This could mean that if your house is devastated by a fire and would need to be rebuilt, on top of the cost of rebuilding the house you must remember that you still have a mortgage to pay even if the house burns down.

Polystyrene tiles removal?

As you already know, I had an entire house with polystyrene tiles on the ceiling and we thought it would be easy to just lift them off. We were mistaken and it is actually very time consuming and hard work! These are the methods we tried:

  • Using a wallpaper stripper knife, just lift the corner of the tiles and scrape off.
  • Using a wallpaper steamer, you can use pretty much the same as you would on wallpaper.

We found the first method to be quicker and less messy as using wallpaper steamer on the ceiling leaks water everywhere. It’s easier to use force when removing polystyrene ceiling tiles because they don’t just pop off like most people think and it is hard graft.