Shower ceiling paint cracking and peeling

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  #1  
Old 01-14-17, 07:49 PM
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Shower ceiling paint cracking and peeling

So the paint on my shower ceiling had been cracking and peeling and I finally decided to something about it. So I first washed it with a bleach solution (to get rid of the bit of mold) then I started scraping. I kept scraping and scraping and more and more came off. And it looks like the ceiling under the paint is cracking as well. I'm not sure what material the ceiling is but it doesn't feel like drywall as it is very smooth and cool to the touch.

So what is the best way to fix this to put a new coat of paint on? Do I need to scrape the entire ceiling? Do I need to put some sort of spackle compound over the ceiling before painting? Thank you.

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First picture is after bleach washing and before scraping.

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Second is after scraping for a while with lots of paint coming off as well as showing the ceiling cracks.
 
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Old 01-15-17, 03:16 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

How old is the house? it looks like latex paint may have been applied directly over oil base enamel Ideally you'd scrape, sand and then skim coat but you need to verify the underlying paint isn't lead based before you sand!
 
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Old 01-15-17, 06:16 AM
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So the question is if under the paint are you finding additional paint or is that the drywall/plaster?

Ultimately you need to get the all the old paint off, do any repairs, couple coats of primer, then paint.

Other item to consider, ventilation. Lots of steam/moisture will just cause the problem to return sometime.
 
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Old 01-15-17, 08:14 AM
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Thank you for the replies! The house was built in 1970. The previous owner had redone the bathrooms so I assumed he had repainted the bathroom ceilings.

After I scrape off the paint I am down to the drywall/plaster, not more paint. So I should be able to just repair the cracking ceiling and not have paint peeling again? (Assuming I do the prep correctly)
 
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Old 01-15-17, 09:50 AM
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The age of the house makes the odds good that the original bath rm paint was oil base enamel. The odds are it wasn't lead based but since lead wasn't banned from residential work until the late 70's the only way to know for sure is to test it. The 2 big health dangers from lead based paint is ingestion and breathing the dust from sanding.

If all the paint comes off you should be good to go to start skimming. IF the drywall or plaster is dusty and that dust can't be wiped off you'd want to prime first, then skim coat.
 
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Old 01-16-17, 10:15 AM
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If you're getting down to plaster and not paint, it could be that the surface was dirty or otherwise contaminated.
 
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Old 01-16-17, 10:23 AM
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Did we ever determine if it was plaster or drywall ??

Plaster has to cure before it can be primed. Painted too soon it will 'burn' the paint affecting how the painted wall/ceiling looks. I don't know if painting plaster too soon affects the bond. A common mistake made with drywall is painting over sanding dust
 
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Old 01-21-17, 05:41 AM
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OK I think this is all the scraping I'm going to get done without scraping for the rest of the month and since my wife would like to use the bathtub for the kids I've decided to move on.

So at this point do I need to sand and then skim coat or can I just go forward and skim coat. Also do I just use any joint compound for the skim coat? Or something specific?

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How the ceiling looks after another bleach wash.
 
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Old 01-21-17, 06:04 AM
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It's almost always a good idea to sand first as that helps promote a physical bond between the mud and the wall. If the underlying paint is thought to be lead based, I'll wipe it with a deglosser instead of sanding.

Any joint compound will work. The green lid j/c has more adhesive properties than the light weight mud.
 
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Old 01-21-17, 06:31 AM
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OK so this is a couple close ups of what is under the paint. I'm not knowledgeable enough to be able to tell what it is. Or if it really matters.

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As you can see there are some gouges from the scraping

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And this is at the edge of the ceiling, there is a rough, softer surface under the ceiling material.
 
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Old 01-21-17, 01:47 PM
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It looks like you have plaster but you can still use j/c to skim coat.
 
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Old 01-21-17, 04:15 PM
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So this is my skim coat after today.

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The plan is to sand it smooth tomorrow and then prime and paint.
 
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Old 01-22-17, 03:35 AM
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Looking better After sanding you may need to add a little j/c here and there to make it all smooth/even.
 
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Old 01-22-17, 08:45 AM
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I was wondering about that. Should that layer of j/c be pretty thin, as in viscosity, not the amount on the ceiling? It seemed kind of difficult to get a thin coat with the j/c right out of the bucket.
 
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Old 01-22-17, 10:14 AM
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It's usually best to thin the j/c slightly, that makes it flow better and makes it easier to get a nice job.
 
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Old 01-22-17, 09:37 PM
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Ceiling after second skim coat. This coat went on much easier.

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Sanding and priming tomorrow.
 
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Old 01-23-17, 03:47 AM
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Try to get it as smooth as you can before priming and remove the sanding dust. Pay attention to the ceiling while the primer is wet as that will highlight any areas that need more work. Remember where those areas are as when the primer dries they will be harder to spot. Then you just need to readdress those spots, sand and spot prime. The more sheen the finish paint has the more important it is to get it right.
 
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Old 01-23-17, 04:33 AM
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I like the color and the tiles. It jives together.
 
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Old 01-26-17, 10:45 AM
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Keep in mind that joint compound is water soluble so a wet sponge can often be used in place of sandpaper on fresh mud which needs only a little work.
 
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Old 01-26-17, 02:25 PM
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Smoothing the mud out with a wet sponge works well although it does require the mud to have been applied fairly even/level. I mostly use this method when making repairs in a lived in house - eliminates the sanding dust. Dry sanding with a sanding pole is more dummy proof.
 
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Old 01-30-17, 05:33 AM
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I have been not working on this for a few days because of the flu. But before that I did sand. And I did try this wet sanding sponge I found at Lowe's after the first skim coat, but it seemed to take off too much of the compound. So for the second coat I dry sanded.

Last night I did apply the first coat of primer. Tonight I'll try to apply the second coat of primer and the first coat of paint. Will post pictures when done. Thank you all for your input.
 
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Old 01-30-17, 06:08 AM
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Normally there is only need for one coat of primer. When applying 3 coats it's better to have 1 primer and 2 finish. Smoothing j/c out with a wet sponge works best if the j/c is applied fairly smooth/even.
 
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Old 01-30-17, 07:21 AM
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Agree with Mark - one coat of primer is sufficient.
 
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Old 02-02-17, 05:27 AM
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So finally finished painting and I'm very happy with how it turned out.

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However when I was peeling (carefully) the painters tape off, there were one or two spots where the paint peeled off of the ceiling a little. Causing not just a little frustration.

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Is there a good way too seal this little area back up without going through the whole process I just did? Can I just spot prime and paint? Thanks.
 
  #25  
Old 02-02-17, 07:21 AM
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Looks like some scraping needs to be done first. If you're careful, might not be a disaster to fix. FWIW, tape normally should be removed when the paint is still wet or the joint between the tape and the wall needs to be cut so any paint overlapping the tape does not pull away paint you wish to keep.
 
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Old 02-02-17, 09:40 AM
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That's one of the reasons I rarely use tape but when it's used, it's best to pull it off as soon as you are done [before the paint dries] as SS suggested.

Along the edges generally touches up better than other areas. You might need a tad bit of mud to smooth it out before priming/painting.
 
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Old 02-08-17, 09:12 AM
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Finished the touch-ups. Didn't end up using more mud. Just cleaned up each area, taking away the loose paint and then primed and painted. I'm happy with it.

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Thank you all for your input. It went much smother than it could have.
 
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Old 02-08-17, 09:23 AM
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If you caulk where the ceiling/wall meet you'll eliminate the crack. Might not be something you want to do now that you are finished but something to remember for next time.
 
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