Popcorn Ceiling Removal

Popcorn Ceiling

Popcorn ceilings were once the rage in residential construction. However, today, this widely used finishing option has fallen out of favor. Need to remove the popcorn texture from ceilings in your home? Trust the time-tested expertise of Acoustical Ceilings. Our staff of licensed specialists is trained to tackle any job, including removal of asbestos-contaminated materials. We also offer a range of attractive options for ceiling resurfacing. Why put up with unsightly interiors when certified help is just a phone call away?

What Is a Popcorn Ceiling?

“Popcorn” is a spray-on or paint-on ceiling texture popular in the U.S. from the 1930s to 1990s. It gets its name because its random surface resembles the appearance of cooked popcorn kernels. You might also know this same texture as a “cottage cheese” or stucco ceiling. Popcorn ceilings became a go-to option, in large part, because they don’t cost much to install. Also, their presence makes it easy to hide poor-quality drywall and framing work.

Reasons for Removal

There are several reasons why you might choose to install recessed lighting. First, you can dim the intensity of this type of lighting to meet your preferences. The wide choice of trim and housing options allows you to customize the look of any lighting setup. Also, since recessed lights don’t hang down into the room, they can make an indoor space seem larger. You can use directional recessed lighting to highlight specific areas or room features. Directional products can also create a “wall washing” effect that increases indoor light levels. Finally, recessed light fixtures can take advantage of energy-saving, long-lasting LED bulbs.

Whatever your reasons for choosing recessed can lighting, the experts at Acoustical Ceilings can help you create your desired results. Our in-house experts can answer all of your questions and help you find products that meet your needs. Moreover, we can follow up our suggestions with top-quality installation services that won’t break your budget.

Probably the number one reason for removing a popcorn ceiling is an aesthetic choice. The look of these ceilings was prevalent in past decades. However, many homeowners now view them as unattractive or outdated. Another common reason for removal is the fragility of the applied texture. Over time it can degrade and fall apart, especially when repeatedly exposed to hot, humid conditions.

In some cases, the degradation of popcorn ceilings can lead to another reason for removal: risk of asbestos exposure. Cancer-causing asbestos was a staple in many paint-on and spray-on mixes until 1977. When a ceiling that contains this substance breaks down, it can release tiny, inhalable particles. If these particles enter your lungs, they can produce a severe health hazard.

Regardless of your reason for getting rid of a popcorn ceiling, count on the specialists at Acoustical Ceilings. Our in-house technicians are familiar with the most up-to-date removal methods. If your ceilings are from before 1978, we’ll begin by checking for the presence of asbestos. When appropriate, we’ll follow up with state-of-the-art procedures that keep you safe from exposure at all times. Of course, we also remove non-asbestos-containing ceilings with the same commitment to detail and efficiency.

Our Removal Techniques

Before removing your popcorn ceilings, we must have unobstructed access to your chosen room(s). We begin the process of removal by covering your floor(s) for protection and easy cleanup. Next, we’ll wet down the ceiling to keep the release of dust and debris to a minimum. Then, we’ll begin removing sections of the popcorn material in a methodical pattern. Decades of operation have helped us determine the most efficient methods possible. When removal work is complete, we’ll repair or re-tape the ceiling drywall. We’ll also paint the ceiling or, if you prefer, install a more modern textured or decorative surface.

Safe Removal of Asbestos-Containing Ceilings

The State of California maintains strict laws for the removal of any material that contains asbestos. Regulations also exist for the safe hauling and disposal of asbestos-contaminated materials. Steps in the professional removal of affected popcorn ceilings include:

  • Using full body protection for all personnel, including respirators, coveralls, rubber boots, rubber gloves and eye protectors
  • Utilizing plastic sheeting to create a sealed containment area over walls and floors
  • Using additional sheeting to block any adjacent doors or hallways
  • Wetting the ceiling with a mixture of water and detergent
  • Scraping off small sections of the ceiling as work proceeds
  • Using wet rags to scrub off any remaining residue
  • Decontaminating all tools and protective clothing
  • Picking up and bagging all ceiling debris
  • Picking up and bagging all plastic sheeting
  • Bagging up all asbestos-contaminated rags
  • Transporting all secured bags to an approved site designated for asbestos waste disposal

When considering this detailed process, rest assured that the experts at Acoustical Ceilings are licensed asbestos removal contractors. We follow all mandated procedures to the full letter of the law. At no time will we do anything that exposes you, your employees or loved ones to asbestos. Our compliance is rock-solid, and your safety is our commitment and responsibility.

Resurfacing Options

You have a wide range of options when deciding how to resurface your exposed drywall after popcorn ceiling removal. If you like, you can leave the bare surface flat and paint it with your choice of color. You can also opt for a range of textured looks that have more modern appeal than a popcorn finish. Examples of available options in this category include:

  • Knockdown texture: This look starts with the application of texture “mud,” which is then “knocked down” to create a flatter ceiling profile
  • Splatter texture: This texture is similar to knockdown, but with a more splattered or randomized look
  • Orange peel texture: Completion of this look requires only the first step used to create knockdown and splatter textures
  • Santa Fe texture: This thin texture is made by applying an uneven layer of mud over your current drywall
  • Adobe texture: This look recreates the mostly smooth appearance of traditional adobe surfaces

Instead of paint or texture, you can also resurface your drywall with a decorative ceiling. Ceilings in this category are created by inlaying tile or other materials that form a raised pattern. Depending on your tastes, this pattern can be bold, subtle or anywhere in between.

Whichever option you prefer for resurfacing after popcorn ceiling removal, Acoustical Ceilings can meet your needs. We offer a variety of paint color options, including the preferred neutral tone called “Swiss Coffee.” Our texture options include all the most popular styles. Also, we offer a range of expressive possibilities for decorative ceilings.
In all cases, we feature expert installation that leaves no detail unnoticed.

Your Trusted Source for Popcorn Ceiling Removal

The professionals at family-owned and operated Acoustical Ceilings possess unbeatable expertise in the removal of popcorn ceilings. We’re also your verified experts for ceiling resurfacing. Our track record dates back to the 1960s, and you won’t find a better combination of experience, performance, and cost-consciousness. On jobs large and small, we’ll safeguard your health and provide optimal results. For more information or a no-cost pricing estimate, contact us today.

Since 1968, our goal has been to ensure the complete satisfaction of every customer while offering knowledgeable and friendly service at reasonable rates.

Stephanie M.

San Dimas, CA


Just had ugly popcorn removed from my entire home. Truthfully this is a messy, labor intensive process. Although it may look simple on YouTube videos… it’s not. To get professional looking results in a reasonable amount of time you need professionals to do the job. Bob and his team are the professionals I would wholeheartedly recommend.

Bob gave us a fair estimate and recommended additional lighting work that turned our 70s era Home into a modern home. His crew was pleasant and as neat as can be expected when doing this type of work. Our home was scraped, retextured and painted in two days! The lighting looks fantastic and we no longer are living with ugly fluorescent fixtures.

If you’re going to update your home call Bob at Acoustical Ceilings Inc