Repairing small damage to outside corners. Plaster walls.


Once the surface is covered, go back over it, smoothing the plaster to an even thickness. Do not try to achieve perfect smoothness yet (Image 1).

Leave the plaster to dry for another half hour, until it is harder, but still slightly damp (Image 2).

Sweep a clean, dampened trowel blade across the entire surface, smoothing the plaster and redistributing any excess to fill small indents. Hold the blade at a slight angle with only one edge on the plaster to achieve a smooth finish (Image 3).

Leave the plaster to dry for at least half an hour, until the surface is firm enough to touch without moving the plaster, but is still damp. Repeat the smoothing process, again using any excess surface plaster to fill small depressions. If necessary, use a wet brush or garden spray gun to dampen the plaster as you work. Aim for a smooth finish at this final stage; it is more effective than trying to sand rough plaster when dry (Image 4).

Use a small, damp brush to finish...

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To repair a damaged corner, knock away the crumbling and loose plaster with a cold chisel and lump hammer. Then brush away any dust and debris.Temporarily fix a batten vertically to the wall on one side of the damaged area to give you a straight edge. A spirit level can be used to check the edge of the batten is flush with the surface of the undamaged wall. Position the nails as far away from the corner as possible to avoid causing more damage to the plaster. Leave the nail heads protruding to make it easier to remove the batten when the plaster has set. Fill the damaged area with plaster using a plastering trowel. Make sure the plaster is flush with the edge of the batten and ties in with the existing plaster.When it has set, move the batten to the adjacent wall and repeat the process to produce a sharp angle.If you need to apply a finishing coat, repeat the process of fixing the batten to both sides of the corner.To finish the corner use a corner trowel to take away the sharp...
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Many people believe that "plaster wall repair" is an oxymoron. They feel that plaster walls cannot be repaired.

It is true that plaster walls can be difficult to repair--especially if they are too far gone. Like rust on a car, you need to strike at the first sign of problems.

Fortunately, you do not need a special plaster repair kit. All you need are simple drywall tools that you can easily and cheaply obtain at a home improvement store.

Why Plaster Is Harder to Fix

With drywall, it is often more expedient to rip out entire sections and replace with large sheets.

As difficult a material as it is, drywall does offer some advantages over plaster when it comes to repairs. It is possible to remove only the section that needs fixing (plus a few inches beyond), without the entire wall collapsing. The other advantage is that drywall has no backing. Once you cut through drywall, there is nothing behind it except for studs and insulation. It all removes...

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Expert advice and detailed instructions on repairing the most common plaster wall and ceiling problems, including cracks, holes, and sagging

©Don Vandervort, HomeTips

Earthquakes are unkind to plaster walls, as evidenced by this deep crack.

Plaster applied to wood lath is held in place by the “keys” that form when it squishes through the lath. (For more about how plaster walls are built, see Plaster Wall Construction.) Over time, these keys can disintegrate, causing the plaster to crack, crumble, and fall away from the lath. Settling of a house or the occasional earthquake can speed this process.

Some plaster is of poor quality, and this may cause the plaster to crack and crumble. In addition, water damage from roof or plumbing leaks can discolor plaster and cause peeling or efflorescence, the leaching of salts and minerals to the surface.

Plaster can also be damaged from the normal stresses and strains of people living in a house: holes from wall...

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If you live in an older home with sagging plaster on your walls and ceilings, you can fix it. Many older houses have plaster walls and ceilings with wood lath for a base. The wood lath was installed with gaps, called keys, between each piece of lath. The plaster was forced between spaced lath, and this keying action held the plaster in place.

As plaster ages, these keys may break away from the lath, and the plaster coating can come loose and sag away from the lath. Sagging is usually obvious. If you have sags in a plaster ceiling, press upward on the area with the flat of your hand. If the plaster feels spongy or gives under your hand pressure, it’s a sign that the key strength has been lost. If it’s not repaired, the plaster ceiling can collapse.

Whether you patch or replace the sagging plaster depends on the extent of the damage:

If the sagging is severe, meaning that it’s hanging an inch or more away from the lath base, or if it covers a large portion of...

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When life cracks up, we fall for de-stress sessions and when the plaster on our walls cracks, we fall in the web of distress! Wall plasters, unlike the drywall, tend to chip, crack and fall, adding agony to a homeowner's woes. Flaking plaster can get you screaming for help and your attempts to fix one crack can lead to a never-ending struggle with your plasters. No matter how much you try and what you do, wall plasters are difficult to stop from cracking. Only timely intervention can stop the plaster from raking off your walls. While some cracks are merely eyesore and need no repair, others can cause irreparable damages to your wall. Look out for the tell-tale signs of chipping and then take preventive measures to stop the plaster from falling off. Remember, you cannot stop plaster from peeling off, but what you can do is fix them properly to maintain the aesthetic look of your house. Here are some simple quick fixes to your withered plaster. Read on to know ways on how to repair...

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Believe it or not, walls in homes are not all created equal! Some homes have plaster walls rather than drywall or sheetrock, and this is true especially of older, vintage homes. Repairing plaster walls is similar to repair drywall but there are some differences, so it's good to understand how to address a damaged plaster wall before attempting such a repair. In many cases it's ever good to employ a plaster wall contractor so that you know the job is done right the first time.

Underneath the plaster coating is a subsurface that is made with what resembles chicken wire and wooden slats. The old plaster surface needs to be cleared away so this subsurface can be reached. With slight damage a plastering contractor may be able to actually mix some new plaster which gets applied over this subsurface in layers. This can be enough to fix small damage. In other cases however, such as if the slats or the wire of the subsurface are bent or damaged, then these need to be addressed and...

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Drywall Nail Pops

Can anyone provide suggestions regarding nail pop repairs to drywall?

Make sure they are dimpled down some. Use a larger nail set to get the bit under the surface. Then drywall compound patches sand smooth, prime and paint. If the walls are already, painted just feather out both the primer and the paint and you will not even notice them. If this is in a brand new home that is still under one year old make sure you have the contractor come out on repair them, as it is his responsibility. Part of most new home warranties from the builder themselves.

Nail pops & cracks

My home is 12 years. Recently 1st floor shows nail pops and cracks mostly on vaulted ceiling, you can see where the studs are. Second floor has nail pops in every room in a straight line. What's happening????????

Seasonal variations of humid-dry-humid makes the nails creep out of the studs. Take a hammer and pound them back into the drywall...

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One of the easiest mistakes to make when renovating a historic home is to tear down the old plaster walls and replace them with modern drywall and joint compound. This not only destroys the historic architecture and features that make a historic home great, but it also adds to the overall costs of the project exponentially.

Lime plaster has been in use for thousands of years from Japan to Egypt and has been employed in many historic structures around the globe. Lime plaster is a far superior product than today’s modern wall coverings. With its crystalline structure, it repels moisture well while allowing for the contraction and expansion that often occurs in older homes during changing weather conditions. In fact, as the plaster’s structure calcifies (ages), it increases in durability and strength!

A Little History First

Traditional lime plaster was used for wall coverings until WWII. It was applied in a 3 coat process over thin wood furring strips called lath...

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Smooth Drywall Joints

Use drywall tape to cover joints between drywall sheets, attaching it with a little prepared plaster.

Fill Gaps

Trim tape with scissors to get a neat edge. Fill any gaps greater than 1/8 inch with pre-mixed plaster.

Prepare Plaster

Half-fill a bucket with clean tap water and slowly add the plaster, carefully following the manufacturer's instructions. Mix more as you need it.

Stir the Plaster

Use a power stirrer to mix the plaster. Submerge the stirrer before starting the drill and use at a low speed. You can also mix manually.

Mix the Plaster

Keep adding plaster and mix until it has a creamy consistency. Run a trowel around the edge of the bucket to incorporate all the dry plaster.

Spread the Plaster

Pour the plaster onto a board. It should be thick enough to spread evenly over the board without running over the...

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The Construction Vibration Damage Guide for Homeowners (CVDG)


This section of the free, 100+ page Construction Vibration Damage Guide ("CVDG") for Homeowners has summary information for those whose homes have developed cracking in walls, damage to home mechanical systems, doors and windows misalignment, damage to concrete and concrete blocks, exterior stucco cracks and other signs of distress while road construction, or any other heavy equipment construction causing ground vibration, has been occurring within hearing distance. Such individuals may have real concerns about whether the construction caused the damage to their home or property and how they should deal with that problem.

This and linked pages in the CVDG, which provide more detail on all the topics mentioned in this section, are directed mostly at homeowners facing potential or existing...

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Rodent-proof construction and exclusion methods

Importance of Rodent-Proof Construction

Rats and mice cause serious damage to all kinds of structures if they are allowed access to them. Damage by rodents has been documented in homes, apartments, hotels, office complexes, retail businesses, manufacturing facilities, food processing and warehouse facilities, public utility operations (especially power and electronic media operations), farm and feed storage buildings, and other structures.

In urban settings, rodents most often cause damage to older, inner-city buildings and utilities in poor repair. New housing developments may experience commensal rodent problems, but problems are more noticeable in neighborhoods 10 to 12 years of age or older. Ornamental plantings, accumulation of refuse, woodpiles, and other such sources of harborage and food are more quickly invaded and occupied by rodents when adjacent to an established rodent habitat.

Many types of...

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