PeelAway, PeelAway, PeelAway (to be sung to the melody of 'Orinoco Flow')

Work's slowly picking up again in the house. The labour of love of preparing the kitchen window for painting gathered pace with a chemical paint stripper called PeelAway. We've used this before, with not much success on the front porch, where, for some reason, it didn't really get the paint layers off the plaster walls. But we also used it on a door lock, where it magically cleaned off the paint very well. 

In my desperation of wanting to strip the inside rebates of the sash window in the kitchen, I did try the heat gun, but the risk of cracking the panes is too high. I noticed this when I did crack one of the panes, but shhhhh, the other half hasn't noticed yet (I did - I thought it was an old crack previously covered by paint - Ed.). 

So PeelAway1 it was. And it works, I must say. 

You paste a layer on and cover it with the paper supplied with it. The thickness depends on the substrate, I used about 3 to 4mm. Then left it for around 24 hours. 

Here's when I was peeling it away...

Using a spatula and pulling away the paper at the same time, you try to get off as much of the goo as possible in one go. 

It is very aggressive, so do wear gloves! And cover nearby surfaces. 

Next time, I will tape off the windows with masking tape - because once the stuff has dried, it is very difficult to remove and sticks worse than plaster.

Once you've taken the paper and paste off, you need to wash down. And that's the worst thing. It takes forever, especially if you're doing it indoors. Outdoors, you can just hose it down.

I did actually end up bringing the hose pipe in, putting board under the window and hosing it, with the water flowing outside across the board.

I had just had enough of washing it down with a sponge!

All in all, extremely effective. It is quite aggressive on the wood - so be careful not to leave it on too long. Also, you'll need to 'neutralize' it with 10% vinegar essence. The neutralizer that comes with it is 20% and you dilute it by half. Alternatively, I've used 10% vinegar essence from one of our Polish corner shops. 

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