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Repairing/Improving Poorly Finished Drywall Ceiling


BigOldXJ's Avatar
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Join Date: Dec 2008
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MA

04-21-10, 10:41 AM   #1  
Repairing/Improving Poorly Finished Drywall Ceiling

Hi everyone. The previous owners in my house installed drywall on the ceiling over the existing plaster/lathe. The drywall itself is in good shape but the installers did a poor job finishing it.

The seams are somewhat visible, or more specifically the difference in texture between the sanded seams and the painted drywall is visible. There are also quite a few spots where they sunk the screws too deep into the drywall and didn't properly fill and sand the depression.

What are my options? There are a few layers of paint on the ceiling and the paint itself in good shape....but what do I do now? I would prefer to keep the surface smooth, is this something I can do on my own? What materials are needed to accomplish such a task? Does it make a difference if there is already paint on there?

Would it be easiest to call in a professional and have them do it? What does something like that tend to cost?

Thanks in advance!

 
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marksr's Avatar
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04-21-10, 12:34 PM   #2  
It's almost always easier to let a pro do the job - if it isn't too difficult to pry open your wallet

As long as the tape is secure [not loose, no bubbles] it shouldn't be too hard to make the ceiling look good. Flat latex paint shouldn't pose any problems, enamels should be sanded a little first.

"The seams are somewhat visible, or more specifically the difference in texture between the sanded seams and the painted drywall is visible"

I assume there is no texture, just the difference between unfinished drywall and the joint compound, correct? If so, dressing up the joints and filling in the screw/nail heads along with a good primer and paint should fix it.

This type of job should be doable by most diyers. Maybe a little messy but not all that difficult


retired painter/contractor avid DIYer

 
BigOldXJ's Avatar
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04-21-10, 03:07 PM   #3  
The tape is secure, no lifting or bubbles. The paint appears to be a flat latex (or at least the top layer does). The existing paint is not textured, there is just a difference in the substrate texture (smooth sanded joint compound vs unfinished drywall).

I'm showing my lack of drywall experience here but what would be the best product for a not-so-experienced diy'er to fill the screw heads with?

I may experiment with a section and see how it goes. If its hopeless I'll call the pros. I hate to have other people do stuff for me unless I have to. Beer 4U2

 
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04-22-10, 04:52 AM   #4  
You want to use joint compound. It's found anywhere drywall products are sold. Most comes in 5 gallon buckets although if you look hard you can find a 1 gal bucket. You'll want a 6" drywall knife and a wider 10"-12" knife for the final application. You'll also want a mud pan to hold the mud while you work with it, some prefer to use a hawk. Mixing and adding a tad of water to the j/c will make it flow easier. Mistakes are easy to fix - just sand them down when dry

Most any ready mix bucket of j/c will work. The green lid [all purpose] adheres the best, the purple lid [light weight] is a little easier to apply - either should work well for you. There is also a newer mud that claims less dust from sanding - but sanding is still dusty
You can also use a wet sponge to soften up the dry j/c to move it around and smooth it out although this method requires a little more skill to get it right.


retired painter/contractor avid DIYer

 
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04-22-10, 05:57 AM   #5  
I would say to hire a pro and get it over with. Drywall work is easy but the learning curve is slow. Trying to fix something is not the best place to start learning. If you do it be sure to get the wide knife like marksr said. Also note that the wide knife will have a slight curve to it and you need to position it in the right direction so that the curve is not the first thing to hit the ceiling. Look down the blade of the knife and you'll see what I mean.

 
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