Replastering Textured Ceilings

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Replacing a Ceiling

Patching a Ceiling

Dear NH,
I'm buying a house that is perfect except I don't really like the swirl texture of the ceiling plaster. During the short week the house will be empty before we move in, I'd like to remove or smooth out the ceilings. Is it best to hang new blue board or can a smoothing coat of plaster be applied using a bonding agent? The ceilings are in very good shape.

Dear C,
If the ceiling is in otherwise good shape, just fill the texture with wallboard compound. If the ceiling is not a "flat" paint (meaning you can detect a glossy appearance to it), you might want to prime with a good primer sealer first before applying the compound. Bonding agents are for helping new cement to stick to old cement and are ineffective on painted surfaces.

Sand off any high spots in the existing texture, and then spread the wallboard compound over the entire ceiling using wide (8" or wider) wallboard knife. It will probably take a few coats to get the ceiling smooth. You do not have to sand between coats, but you should knock off any high spots or lumps with the wallboard knife (dry) before applying a second or subsequent coat. Sand smooth after the final coat. If there are still imperfections you can spot-fill them, again sanding after the compound dries.

This will be a huge job, but I think it will be less big than installing new wallboard. But being the glutton for punishment that you are, if you think you would prefer the wallboard approach, use a 1/4" or 3/8" thick wallboard instead of the 1/2" size... you don't need the strength, so why bother! Plus it will be easier to install because of the lesser weight. Just use a construction adhesive to back up your screws (or nails).

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