Replacing plaster and lath to drywall


Old 07-31-16, 06:28 PM
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Replacing plaster and lath to drywall

I have a brick house built in 1941. Pieces of the ceiling upstairs fell and have some walls and ceilings that are cracked or had a crappy repair job throught the house. We decided to update the house to drywall. We also decided since we are going to replace the ceilings and walls with drywall, we are also going to rewire, reinsulate, and install an attic fan. I started knocking the plaster off where it had broke and started thinking I should do some research before I get carried away. I have started to do some research but I still have some unanswered questions. I would like to do this project 1 room at a time that way we can still live in the house and basically just take our time so I can do it right the first time and I'm a perfectionist and like things looking nice and clean so that will eat up time too I'm sure. So here are a couple questions for the demo part for now :
- the trim around the doors and windows is real wood and I do not want to disturb them if I don't have to. The ceiling comes down at a 45 degree angle and some plaster goes around the trim at the top. The trim goes into the ceiling maybe 1/4". Now to reinsulate the ceiling, I would have remove the lath, which in turn is going to give me issues for the trim. So in your opinion, would it b worth updating the insulation? The insulation is the blow in type and looks like old news papers. I would like to update it to R-38 or R-30.
- the insulation for the ceiling is blown in. I know breathing them in is harmful so should I consider leaving the house until the project is done even though I'm doing one room at a time?

Those are my 2 biggest questions at this time. I'm a handy man and can do the job, just trying to get my ducks in a row to do a time consuming job while working 40+ hrs a week.

Any tips, tricks, and suggestions are much appreciated. Thank you all in advance!
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Old 08-01-16, 04:49 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

If you are going to gut the house I'd at least remove the casing and baseboard! Plaster removal is messy so if you just do one room at a time you need to try and seal that room off from the rest of the house. You might consider laminating the ceiling with drywall so you don't loose the insulation [or the mess] from above.

pics could bring more advice -
Old 08-01-16, 05:43 AM
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Ok thank you. We actually decided last night after I had posted this to patch it for now and wait till spring to do the whole house.
Old 08-01-16, 06:02 AM
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All the trim needs to go to do this right.
All HVAC vents need to be sealed off.
Put a box fan in the window blowing out. (make sure the screen is removed if there is one)
A home that old may have balloon wall const. and the walls will need to be fire blocked at the top and bottom before covering.
If your going to try and do this one room at a time I'd be considering adding a sub panel on the second floor to make it far easier to run the wiring.
Has the incoming power and main panel been up graded?
That should be done before any wiring is redone.
Your going to find those old walls are not going to be flat, no big deal because in most cases the studs will need to be shimmed out anyway because the new sheetrook will be thinner then the old plaster and will need to be shimmed to get it to line up with the old casings.
Any plans to install replacement windows?
Reason I ask is when you remove the trim around the windows you'll be shocked at all the huge gaps your going to see that could be filled if the window was replaced to get rid of those old window weights.
Old 08-01-16, 09:06 AM
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The windows have been replaced within the last 5 years. I updated the service last year to square d when I built my island. Thank you for the tips. That is one of my biggest worries is the dust. Doesn't help the first place I'm starting at is in the middle of the house because that's where it's the worse. Thanks again
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