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Thread: mudded walls

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    2

    Default mudded walls

    I am attempting to remove a textured mud design on walls and ceilings. It has been painted and just looks VERY tacky, any ideas on how to remove this stuff?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: mudded walls

    Removing a texture from a wall is a royal pain. Depending on how its done, you can either sc**** it down some, and then put a skim coat of plaster on top of it. However alot of the time its easier to just tear down the wall and put up some new drywall.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Corvallis, Oregon USA
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: mudded walls

    Yes, Jaguar36 is right about scraping down the roughness before you put on a skim coat. But I would recommend using drywall joint compound instead of plaster for your skim coat project. It's a lot easier to use than plaster, and with a couple or three light skims, you'll have the tacky stuff buried.

    Then you can just prime and paint it as a smooth surface, or apply a texture of your own choosing. My website has information on skim coating and on texturizing.

    Skim coating is not a difficult job if you follow a simple step by step system. Good luck

  4. #4

    Smile Re: mudded walls

    The 1950's through the 80's gave us loads of either cheap paneling or textured goop (or shag carpeting) over much higher quality original surfaces in vast numbers of pre-WWII homes. I've tackled removal of all on various occasions, and the removal of a mud texture on walls or ceilings can be fairly easy and satisfying depending on what type of mud was applied. In many cases, cheap joint compound was used, so all you need do is slice lightly through the paint layer with a razor, squirt water on with a spray bottle, and the mud wlll melt allowing you to readily sc**** down to the hard plaster below. (Make your razor slices sort of horizontal with the blade angled slightly down so grooves catch and hold water better. Or soak a rag or sponge and wipe it over the wall to work water into mud.) If the texture is not water soluble, typical chemical paint stripper gels may take it off. Try a small test area to see. Sanding may work or help in some cases, but it's usually too slow, messy, and a breathing hazard.

    Putting another coat over the entire surface to bury the texture might not be a great idea for several reasons:
    -It takes a very skilled hand or lots of messy sanding to get a nice flat surface.
    -Covering the texture may require such a thick layer of additional mud, it will diminish or destroy the reveal and depth of shadow lines of woodwork.
    -If the texture was not a durable product, not bonded properly to the surface, or if there are cracks in the plaster below, your new mud will have the same problems.
    -In rare instances, removing the texture will reveal an impressive historic wood paneling or wallpaper that you'd be happy to find.

    Tearing down the old walls to the studs and starting fresh with some modern wall covering is the worst idea of all:
    -First because the mess and very heavy debris disposal is as bad as it gets.
    -New walls rarely match the flat, monolithic quality, thermal & sonic characteristics, and durability of the old (imagine putting your fist through drywall compared to punching through wood lath and plaster! Which would you rather have between you and the elements?)
    -It removes a substantial yet subtle indicator that you're living in an historic house. Even brittle, crumbling plaster can easily be repaired if you know how, which preserves authentic materials that make your home a genuine antique artifact.
    Last edited by Eric Anderson; 03-09-2008 at 07:09 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Corvallis, Oregon USA
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: mudded walls

    Yes, I also don't like the idea of tearing everything off and starting fresh. A huge, messy and potentially expensive job.

    But skim coating has its virtues. If the texture is quite rough, scraping can knock off the high points, reducing the depth of the skim coat to follow.

    If the skim coat is put on properly, you will only be doing one thing essentially: burying the old texture. Your depth will be no thicker than the remaining high points of the old texture, PROVIDED you do the skim coat properly. This has little or no impact of the surrounding trim.

    If your skim coat is over drywall, then it is especially advantageous, since you won't be damaging the wallboard paper as you might by scoring, wetting and scraping.

    Over plaster, it would all depend on what the original state of the plaster was before someone put on the present texture. If someone was only intent on changing the look of the first texture, then wetting and washing off the joint compound might be a good thing to do. You won't know until the original texture is revealed. If the original state of the plaster was smooth, then someone may have textured over the plaster simply to try to hide cracks and other defects.

    In that case, you have some basic repairs to do before you go anywhere else with the project.

    If there is any concern about getting a good bond with the surface, rolling on a bonding agent provides extra insurance.

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