Walls nned work


Old 12-28-02, 05:35 PM
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Question Walls nned work

We have a bedroom in our home that has plastered walls and a horrid color. Every 18 inches the wall has a small (bulges out)seam that runs from the floor to the ceiling. The wall also has other imperfections such as a buldges that run diagonally two to three feet and a rough finish in some areas, especially around courners and edges and smooth areas nears outlets and such.

We want to paint the room, but are afraid that the paint job will show the imperfections. What is the best way to smooth the wall out. I have been told to just smooth compound(?) over the entire exterior, but won't that screw up my moldings. Also I was encouraged to rip out all the plaster and put up drywall. Being my first home, we purchased this past summer, I want to make sure it is done right.

I have a little experience with home repair but in no way am I an expert.
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Old 12-28-02, 11:15 PM
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Honestly the ultimate choice is yours it depends on how much you want to sweat or pay

You have a few options open to you, these are not listed in any order of pertinence

1. tear out the plaster and hang drywall
pros - eliminates bulges you can start completely fresh,
insulate, allows cheap changes wiring/move outlets add
cons - extremely messy, very time consuming, really involved
DIY project, or potentially expensive contracted job, the
plaster thickness must be matched to marry with existing
casings and trim

2. hang drywall over plaster (it most likely will float
inconspicuously over the bulges)
pros - eliminates bulges it's almost a fresh start,
it is not as messy and backbreaking as removing plaster
before drywall,
cons - very messy, time consuming, involved DIY
project, or potentially expensive contracted job, casings
and trim will have to be replaced or adjusted to
compensate for the extra thickness added to the wall by
the drywall.

3. mask defects with a wall texture, pattern, or skim coat there
are drywall mud and paint products that can be used to
pros - hides bulges, (not cracks, cracks in plaster need to be
taped off and finished before texturing or they will
reappear), cheap in cost, easy DIY project, quick, alot of
tools have hit the market that allow shortcuts for novices
to get proffessional results, not extremely messy
cons - limited ability to hide defects in the wall (since I can't see
what they look like you have to make the judgement call)

4. cover bulges in wall with paneling or wainscott (wood or other material)

Alot of the covering with paneling or drywall also depends on thje size and location of the bulges on the wall they may not be able to be covered.

If you are looking for an easy quick fix try texturing the wall to cover the bulges or if the bulges are too big you could cut and remove the uneven areas of the wall then patch the holes with drywall. You would need to shim the drywall out so it is plane with the surface of the wall, because most plaster is thicker than 1/2" and varies in thickness along the wall. Instead of trying to match the finish of the drywall patches to the remaining plaster wall you could apply a texture or skim coat to the entire surfaceof the wall thus masking the patched areas. But before the texture is applied you would need to mud and tape off the interface between the drywall and the existing plaster wall to prevent cracks.

(Personally if it were me: if the house is old and the wiring and plumbing were old and I was unsatisfied with the walls I would remove and replace them by doing this I could inspect the wiring and plumbing completely, infact I am on the tail end of doing that to my current house I have just finished the drywall and now need to paint and texture the ceiling. My 1927 home now has updated and enhanced wiring along with plumbing. If the house is relatively moderate in age with good wiring and plumbing I wouldn't tear out the walls, I would probably cover the plaster with drywall or I would apply a texture to the wall to hide the defects in the plaster.)

This whole response is centered around the fact that the bulges are superficial issues with the wall covering deteriorating but the bulges could be tell tale signs of bigger problems with the home. The wall condition could be a symptom of a structural problem. It could be something as simple as uneven studs caused by poor framing practice or your house could have some structural support issues. You need to evaluate whether this line of thinking is apprpriate based from the condition of the wall and the home. Look for an uneven floor in the room or doors that are very sticky or that won't close at all. Look for uneven or sagging walls in other rooms, look for cracks along the foundation or in the bricks if it is a brick home. Look at the support beams in the basement they may be compromised look for any type of water or termite damage and decay of the structural members of your home if you have a basement or other type of access. If you see these signs you may need proffessional help to ultimately fix the wall and the problem.

I know this is a long response but I had the time and I a quick typing rate so I thought I would share my complete two cents. I hope the info. I supplied is of some help to you.
Old 12-29-02, 12:22 AM
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One other thing

You could also cut out and patch the bulged areas then cover the wall with wall paper wich is very easy as well.

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