Cracking Paint on Plaster Walls - Advice Needed

Discussion in 'Painters' Talk' started by N.Cane, Jun 22, 2013.

  1. N.Cane

    N.Cane New Member

    Hi all, I am a new member to this site and new (ish) to decorating.

    I am having trouble with walls in two of my rooms, the Living room and the hallway. For some reason every time we paint, after a while it starts to crack in different areas of each room. (Please see attached photo's for examples) I need to find a way of being able to ressolve this problem. Someone told me that a possible reason for this could be that the walls were not preped properly before it was first painted. He told me the only way to ressolve this problem would be to strip all the walls back to plaster (Removing all paint anad wall paper) I have taken this advice and stripped all the wall paper and have started to remove the paint

    I have tried using Paint Stripper but I would need a large amount of this which would be too expensive. I am now slowly scrapping of paint but there are roughly 6-8 layers on each wall. If I contiue to just scrap it off it would take months. Is there an easier way to remove the paint? I think I read somewhere that I could use white spirit.....would this work? if not does anyone have any soloutions??

    Nick :)

    Attached Files:

  2. Astramax

    Astramax Super Member

    Easy option would to have gone over the walls with a good quality lining paper such as Wallrock fibre liner but just an ordinary 1400 grade lining paper would be ok .
  3. tremain

    tremain New Member

    I suspect you might be trying to cover silk with a matt emulsion .You could just sand it all first but as Astra says lining it would be the best bet.
  4. N.Cane

    N.Cane New Member

    Thank you very much for your advice.

    Would Sanding the walls remove all the layers of paint? What sandpaper would I need, Coarse?

    I dont want to put linning paper up as I have started scrapping paint of and so it is very uneven,
  5. surfermick

    surfermick New Member

    N.ane,  sounds like you could be getting into quite a job here. from what im reading you have taken off some wall paper and tried to paint the walls but they keep reacting with the paint and splitting (is this right?) It looks like what you have going on is "crazing" as appose to "cracking" if so i believe  you may be having problems with residual paper paste, ive seen this before. Once you had stripped the paper did you thoroughly scrub the walls with hot water and sugar soap? i mean thoroughly.

    to answer you question about using white spiritd, no, white spirits will not remove old paint. nitro would be totally impractical and very costly. when you say you stripped the wall paper off does that mean you have a steam stripper? it is possible to use the steam stripper as you would to strip paper to take off some paint, moving around the room with the stripper and a scraper.
  6. tremain

    tremain New Member

    It sounds that. your beyond the sanding option,that was to provide a suitable surface for painting (over possible silk ?),not to take all paint off.You probably should line it ..if the surface is in the state iyou say then that is exactly when to line.Got to shoot now as I got to go and line some stairs and landing:)
  7. Astramax

    Astramax Super Member

    Forget chemical paint strippers (too long and messy) it would be far quicker to use a wallpaper steam stripper to fetch this lot off reasonably quickly. Take care not to dwell too long as you could easily blow the plaster.
  8. N.Cane

    N.Cane New Member

    Thank you everyone for all your advice.

    Surfermike - I have taken the wallpaper off as well as lining paper that I previously hung. We put up the lining paper because of the problem. Due to it looking really bad we took it down again. The paint is cracked (Crazing) there are pictures on my original post. Unfortunatly I cannot upload any pictures as they are to big. Do you have an email address I could send some pictures to.

  9. Astramax

    Astramax Super Member

    Wallrock fibre liner, check it out.
  10. surfermick

    surfermick New Member

    sorry N.Cane, i cant put my email up on here, im afraid there are some that seem to have a grievence with me and my advice and i prefer to stay safe. it is easy enough to post pictures on here. just press reply topost, in the box where you write there is a line of icons above and one of them is a camera icon, just press that and upload a photo or two.:)
  11. Astramax

    Astramax Super Member

    Mick was totally correct in an earlier reply in that you failed to wash the walls with a sugar soap solution to remove the residual paste that would be dried on top of the plaster before you painted, the waterbased emulsion paint livened up the dried wallpaper paste and cracked on drying, Steam it off with a wallpaper steam stripper,;)
  12. N.Cane

    N.Cane New Member

    Sorry Surfermick I hadn't thought of the security risk. I had tried to upload the photo's but it was saying the file is too big and not sure how to shrink it.

    Astramax....Things are getting confused....The wallpaper that I hav peeled off was cheap lining paper that I had previously Hung, I took it down because it was all uneven with sharp bits pointing through. I had put the lining paper up because of the cracked problem, I saw it as a quick soloution. This time I wanted to do it properly so wanted to remove all the previous years of paint layers. I have started scrapping large areas of the paint and so if i finish it would all be uneven.

    I will carry on if I need to it's jjust a have an "Unstable" Shoulder Joint meaning I can only do little bits at a time which is why i was looking for  a quicker soloution. The hallway walls have the same problem, cracked/crazed

    Once again, thankk you both for taking time to reply. :)
  13. surfermick

    surfermick New Member

    have you tried using the wallpaper stripper to soften the paint as you scrape it N ? these strippers are only about £20-30 and it will save you and your shoulder a good deal of effort. one tip for these jobs is to start in one place and stick to it, setting a line you wish to achieve. i find this works for all aspects of trade work, if you go at it here and there you dont notice a significant change at the end of the session..........................

      do you own a decent orbital sander? it could be a way to go but you would need to apply pressure (again tough on a dodgy shoulder) ...............................
      another idea= do you not know a local trader that may come in and strip it for you, ask him/her how much then work out if you think the time + effort you need to apply to it is worth the cost of someone else doing it.  ....................
    hope these words help.  keep posting, lets see what we can do:)
  14. N.Cane

    N.Cane New Member


    Once again, thank you for all your advice, I think I will try the wall paper stripper and see I get on with that but also get a quote and like you say, weigh up the different aspects.

    Nick :)

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