How do I make this ceiling smooth?

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Old 05-05-17, 10:25 AM
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How do I make this ceiling smooth?

My husband and I just bought a new place. It has a popcorn ceiling which my husband will remove. We had it tested and doesn't contain asbestos. He has watched many videos on how to remove it and we think he can do it.

My question is about the ridges/indentation of the ceiling. There is probably a name for these things but I don't know what these are called. I would like my husband to fill them in so the ceiling is entirely smooth. How does one do this? And can it be done or is there some function for these ridges? I hope someone can tell us how one goes about it. Please explain in such way that even a monkey would understand. We are beginner DIY-ers.
 
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Old 05-05-17, 11:50 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

That looks commercial, is this a condo with a concrete floor above the room? A little hard to tell from the pics but that doesn't look like traditional popcorn texture.
 
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Old 05-05-17, 11:52 AM
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I have only seen ridges like that in concrete construction. If you tap on your ceiling and it's really rock solid then it's likely concrete. If so then best would be to use a metal scraper or wire brush and clean out the grooves so you see bare concrete. Then mortar could be troweled into the grooves.
 
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Old 05-05-17, 05:24 PM
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Thank you for your answers. Yes, it's a condo. It would be concrete.
 
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Old 05-05-17, 05:29 PM
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Will the mortar just stick? Is it the same stuff one would use for tiles? And then sand down after? Sorry if these are dumb questions. I really appreciate the help!
 
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Old 05-06-17, 03:35 AM
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I've never scraped texture off of concrete but if the texture is the same type that is used over drywall the removal will be the same. Personally I'd use a setting compound like Durabond or EasySand to fill in the grooves.

There are no dumb questions, the only way to learn is by asking and doing
 
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Old 05-06-17, 03:47 AM
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I would try to scrape a small section in a dark corner. Does not look like regular popcorn ceiling. Almost looks like a rough sand finish. Before you get to deep into job see if it will come off like popcorn.
 
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Old 05-06-17, 04:41 AM
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If it's a water soluble texture like what is commonly used on drywall it doesn't matter if it's popcorn or some other type. IF it's painted, it will be harder to remove because the moisture has to penetrate the paint in order to loosen the texture's bond with the substrate. There are other commercial type textures that are not water soluble and may not come off easily. With those types it might be best to scrape and then just skim coat over what remains.
 
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Old 05-06-17, 07:05 AM
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Thank you all for your answers. I think it's not going to be very difficult to scrape the texture. It has already come off in some places and it was easy to remove a few samples to sent to a test lab for asbestos.

With the Durabond or Easysand, do we also need to add mesh? or is it just fill in, let it set, sand and paint?

Thanks again!!
 
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Old 05-06-17, 07:14 AM
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You shouldn't need to use any tape [mesh or otherwise] with a setting compound. It pays to apply it as neat as you can because it is hard to sand. You'll probably find pot marks in the concrete ceiling that will also need to be filled.
 
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Old 05-06-17, 01:56 PM
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Look very carefully at the joints. They may be merely aesthetic, being formed into the slab. But they might be edges of individual slabs. If they are edges of individual slabs, expect a crack. Maybe the crack will be right down the middle of the filled in groove and, maybe it will go back and forth within the groove. Can you live with a crack better than the joint?
 
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Old 05-06-17, 03:49 PM
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I can't tell if they are individual slabs or not. We get the key the 19th so we can take a better look then. I don't want to live with a crack nor a joint!

We are starting to wonder if we should hire someone professional to take care of the ceiling...I want it to look good. If the ceiling wasn't already so low, we would put drywall over it but it's only 8 feet high as it is. And the structured ceiling makes it look even lower
 
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