+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    13

    Default Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    I am reno'ing a house - but that means pulling baseboard trim from plaster walls and I am not sure how to handle it. I have to paint the walls and I was thinking about replacing the baseboards while I was at it, but others have told me that it is too much work with the spiral nails in the plaster (baseboard trim) causing all kinds of headaches when they are removed...
    The house is from 1963.
    Any suggestions are welcome.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    I have never run into spiral nails holding moldings, ever, let alone a "newer" home of the 60's era. If you are unsure of what you've got and whether it's worth the effort, pick an inconspicuous place, such as a closet, and pull the baseboards.

    Start by using a utility knife along the top edge where it meets the wall to cut the caulk/paint, then carefully put a couple of flat bars behind the trim and slowly work it free. Working slowly and carefully will minimize damage to the wall.

    You have two options here, either continue prying the trim off the wall, or if the nails are a problem, pry it just enough to get some snips behind it to cut the nails. Once the trim is removed, the nails can be driven home and the wall patched.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    Thank you for the advice. I didn't want to start and find out I could have done something different.
    I figured it was the best way to paint the wall by taking off the baseboards first.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    Only remove the base if you're going to replace it. It is otherwise completely unnecessary to pull trim to paint a wall. Look up the technique of "cutting in paint" on youtube for some helpful videos on how to paint without the use of tape or trim removal.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    Well, the baseboards are wood, so I wanted to paint them as well. Does your advice still apply in this situation?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,081

    Default Re: Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    I agree with spruce, you don't have to pull the baseboards in order to paint them. This is totally unnecessary and you will likely damage them in the removal process, no matter what fasteners were used: finished nails, brads or paneling nails.

    Use an excellent paint brush, a paint guide and if you are a trained painter, you'll get good results. I even skip the blue tape (or the 'new & improved' frog tape).

    Staying with wood baseboards is smarter than replacing them with mdf, if they are not damaged of course.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Pulling trim from plaster? Should I?

    Quote Originally Posted by netrate View Post
    Well, the baseboards are wood, so I wanted to paint them as well. Does your advice still apply in this situation?
    It is unnecessary to remove baseboards to paint them or the wall. The ONLY time you need to remove base is if you want to change it or repairs need to be made.

    If the base is going to have a different finish than the wall, then the technique of cutting in still applies. Cutting in is about paint control through the proper use of a brush. You will require a good quality 2-1/2" or 3" angled brush, such as a Purdy or Baker brand brush. Fit the brush to your hand, different brands have different sized handles.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •