The plaster in your house might become loose or damaged due to heat or physical impact. It may consequently fall off leaving unpleasant patches on the walls. These patches require re-plastering so as to achieve a smooth wall that can be painted or decorated. But is plastering as easy as just reading an article and doing it yourself? Well not always. Plastering requires skilled expertise and a great deal of experience. Fortunately, you can do it yourself if you are just filling patches on the wall. With a DIY guide, you can get the job right without hiring a professional. This guide will show you some easy and elaborate steps on how to plaster an internal wall.
Before you begin the process, it is important to prepare yourself psychologically. Plastering is physical work and involves a lot of energy. It’s good to have a warm up before you start the job. Stretch out the muscles with a few exercises. Whether you are renovating your old home or moving into a new house, this will help you not to tire easily and reduce the aching that comes afterwards.
Step 1: Get everything ready
If you are applying plaster on a high ceiling or a hallway, you might need a trestle to avoid stretching too much when plastering. Remember that you shall be using a lot of bold and sweeping hand movements which may be restricted if you are hanging from a ladder. Move all fittings, fixtures and furniture away from the wall and cover all of them with dust sheets. The next thing to do is to gather your tools. The following are the tools you require.
- Paddle accessory and power drill
- A hawk
- A bucket
- Angle beading
- A cold chisel and lump hammer
- Scrim tape for board joints
- A quality paintbrush
- Cleaning materials such as dustpan, brush and rags
Step 2: Prepare the wall
Remove anything stuck or nailed on the wall including picture rails, dado rails and skirting boards. This might also include the radiator. If you are unsure about the removal of the heating system, seek help from a professional. It is advisable to wet the wall before you hack off the old plaster. This will prevent dust from blowing over the room. Fix the angle beads on the edges of the wall including the fireplaces. Make sure that you hack off all the old plaster and dispose of it.
Step 3: Plastering the Wall
Now that the wall free, it is time to get it plastered.
Mix the plaster
To mix the plaster follow the instructions on the bag. Typically, you should add the plaster to the water and not the other way round. Therefore, you need to make sure that the measurements are right. The bucket you use should be clean every time you make a mix. Stir up the mixture thoroughly until you obtain a creamy consistency that doesn’t have lumps. To make this task easier, you may use the paddle accessory and power drill if they are available.
Time is of the essence here especially if you are doing the job during summer time. This is because the plaster begins to dry immediately it is mixed with water. Therefore, you ought to work quickly and possibly mix small potions at a time.
Applying the First Coat
Normally, you need to apply two coats to achieve a smooth and level finish. You can minify this if you are plastering on drywall sheets or new gyproc plaster walls. Scoop a chunk of the mortar onto the hawk then collect half of it onto the trowel. Start applying from the bottom of the wall and use smooth strokes with the trowel. Press the plaster into the wall and distribute it evenly over a certain area. Once you are done with the first coat, allow it to dry. You may open the windows and doors for extra ventilation.
Applying the Final Plaster Coat
Prepare the mixture and apply the coat with the same method as the first coat. The only difference now is that you need try much harder to obtain a good quality mortar. Remember that this is the surface where the paint will go on; its needs to be smooth. Once you are done with the application, wait for it to harden slightly and then smoothen it with the trowel.
Step 4: Drying and Polishing the Plaster
The plaster takes about three quarter of an hour to dry out completely. To do the final smooth, flick water onto the wall using the paintbrush then pass the trowel gently on the wall. Try to feel if there are any holes and voids that need to be filled. Now the job seems to be done. You may clean up your working area and tools and store the equipment for the next time. This post was brought to you from the people behind Midland Stone.
Check out my post on how to clean gutters as well.