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Help! How to repair this wall? -Don’t know what it’s made of...

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Mollie

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Hello,

Let me start off by saying - I am a first time home owner who is trying to figure things out as I go... At first I thought repairing these walls in my closets would be a fairly "easy" task... But now I'm second guessing myself. Coming here to get some tips. I'd love to do this repair myself if I can't be pointed in the right direction.

I attached a few photos of one of the closets that previously had some water damage (just had a brand new roof installed so leak is taken care of now). I thought it would be as simple as peeling off paint/wallpaper and patching with plaster - but now I've uncovered this brown paper underneath and I'm not sure how to go about patching and then painting over top... The "wall" is slanted and you can see where the water damage has trailed down to the shelf.

I'm not sure what all the layers are - the more "sedimentary" layer, then the plaster layer, then the brown paper, then paint. And some places all the layers are coming off and in other places, only the paint and brown paper are coming off...

Do I need to completely strip the whole closet and re-plaster/prime seal and then paint? Orrrrrr if not - can someone give me some tips on which direction to go?

Thank you in advance, if you can help, you'd be a life saver... I'd love to accomplish this myself.
 

Gary

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Looks like sheetrock with Cellulose insulation above. I would first get the cloths out of the way, because it may get messy before your done. I'd guess the damage was caused by moisture? If so, you'd want to cut out the bad drywall and look for the source of the leak, before making repairs, so it doesn't happen again. Do you have access to the ceiling from above?
 

Mollie

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Looks like sheetrock with Cellulose insulation above. I would first get the cloths out of the way, because it may get messy before your done. I'd guess the damage was caused by moisture? If so, you'd want to cut out the bad drywall and look for the source of the leak, before making repairs, so it doesn't happen again. Do you have access to the ceiling from above?
Thank you for the response Gary! There used to be a slow leak coming from the roof right above this... It's been a couple weeks since the roof was put on and I haven't felt any moisture since then. I will be removing all the clothes before really getting into repairs, this is just what easily fell off as I was investigating.

This is an amateur question, but which part is the cellulose insulation that you are referring to?

The innermost layer (the darker/gray) is pretty solid in texture... What is this layer? And would the plaster/drywall be placed right on top of this when repairing?
 

Snoonyb

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There are a couple of methods.
Finding where the rafters are and cutting the drywall to fit so that you have something the screw the repair too.
Another is to fill the areas with fixall or drywall compound or plaster of paris and then applying new 3/8" drywall over the entire rake.
 

Mollie

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There are a couple of methods.
Finding where the rafters are and cutting the drywall to fit so that you have something the screw the repair too.
Another is to fill the areas with fixall or drywall compound or plaster of paris and then applying new 3/8" drywall over the entire rake.
I think I follow - how would I drywall over the curve in the wall though?
 

Snoonyb

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I don't see a curve, so if it's in a photo please tell which one.
 

Mollie

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I don't see a curve, so if it's in a photo please tell which one.
Right above the shelf, the wall curves. Where the places are that you can see that darker/innermost layer is almost right in the curve of the wall.

I'm also just trying to understand as well... If the darker layer (whatever that layer is made of, still not sure) is still in tact, should I be able to patch the places where this layer is exposed with plaster? If so, would I just scrape all the paint layer and brown layer that is flaking/cracking, patch the plaster spots, sand everything out and then seal everything with a surface sealer like GARDZ and then paint?
 

Snoonyb

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Thanks, I see what you are referring to.
Thats an architectural element where the cripple wall transitions to the roof rake and for your purposes just start the rake portion were it flattens out and then you fill the bottom in with drywall compound.

When you do in fill where the drywall is no longer, you use the web tape and when you are just patching over drywall you cut the paper back to, hopefully a solidly adhered spot, and if that becomes impractical, just do the patching as best you can keeping the patch level with the surrounding area, then prime with a good oil based primer, which as it dries will pull any loose paper off, clean and prime again.
 

jeffmattero76

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Hello,

Let me start off by saying - I am a first time home owner who is trying to figure things out as I go... At first I thought repairing these walls in my closets would be a fairly "easy" task... But now I'm second guessing myself. Coming here to get some tips. I'd love to do this repair myself if I can't be pointed in the right direction.

I attached a few photos of one of the closets that previously had some water damage (just had a brand new roof installed so leak is taken care of now). I thought it would be as simple as peeling off paint/wallpaper and patching with plaster - but now I've uncovered this brown paper underneath and I'm not sure how to go about patching and then painting over top... The "wall" is slanted and you can see where the water damage has trailed down to the shelf.

I'm not sure what all the layers are - the more "sedimentary" layer, then the plaster layer, then the brown paper, then paint. And some places all the layers are coming off and in other places, only the paint and brown paper are coming off...

Do I need to completely strip the whole closet and re-plaster/prime seal and then paint? Orrrrrr if not - can someone give me some tips on which direction to go?

Thank you in advance, if you can help, you'd be a life saver... I'd love to accomplish this myself.
That appears to me to be a plaster coating over browncoat.

I have done many repairs of this type of wall. Start by GENTLY chipping away the loose cracked white plaster but only where it is loose. Go to the big box stores and buy a bag of Structolite, which is a powder that you mix with water. Wet the area with a spray bottle or a paintbrush, being sure to wet the old edges thoroughly. Trowel on the Structolite, using a drywall taping knife or other screed using the intact white coat as your guide. In other words, your screed should span the damaged area and each side 9f the screed would ride on the intact white coat. 8f the damaged area is wide, I have used a 24inch paint guard as a screed. Allow that to dry overnight. The next day, I sand it to remove any tool marks or other issues, and then I spackle it using easy sand setting type joint compound (a powder you mix with water ) I typically use the 20 minute type, but, if you are new, you may do better with the 90 minute type so that you have more time to work with it before it sets.again, sand that the next day, and add another coat if necessary. Then I typically use Gardz to seal it all, and then I paint.

Good luck!
 

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