11:54AM | 11/30/98
What would cause eruptions (for lack of a better word) in my living room wall? Various spots look like the plaster is slowly bubbling up. Most spots are an inch or two across but a few are 4-5". It doesn't get to the point that the plaster falls off of the wall, it just kind of bubbles, cracks and stays there. There is no sign of water damage. We own an older home and still have plaster walls in most rooms, many of which have cracks, but we only have this erupting problem in the one room. How can I avoid this if I try to patch these areas? Thanks very much.


03:31PM | 12/08/98
Since the walls are plaster and you claim that there is no water damage evident, I would be curious as to the exact location of these "bubbles". Are they on one wall or scattered throughout the room? Are they on exterior or interior walls? Are they in a straight or staggered line? Your problem is not unique, but, I do not want to lead you down the wrong path. We shall await your response.


09:32AM | 12/09/98
They are all in one area of one wall between our front door and a window (it's an outside wall) and from the top of our baseboards to about 5' up the wall (we have 10' ceilings). It's a south-facing wall and the exterior side gets more sun than the rest of the house, although that's still not much because of the surrounding trees. The exterior is brick (painted brick, unfortunately). There doesn't appear to be any pattern or linearity to their location. The house is about 90 years old. I hope that's enough to go on. Thanks a lot.


01:36PM | 12/09/98
Due to the age of the house and the location of the blisters, you have or had moisture entering the house. Since you see no evidence of water on the inside of the house, I would suspect very little water. Water is entering high and running down the back of the wall. If you pull your baseboard away from the wall, there may even be more signs of water damage (maybe not also). Since it is a small amount of water, it is not enough to penetrate and show water stains.
I would look carefully around the door and window trim for gaps in the caulking or wood (especially around the windward side). I would also check the mortar joints in this area. Waterfall is controlled by gravity so do not concentrate down low. Check all the way up to the roofline. Water leaks are one of the most difficult problems to uncover.
When you go to repair the cracks, do not forget to gouge out the crack lines to no more than 1/4 inch and use patching plaster to fill the area. I really hope this helps and I wish you GOOD LUCK!!!!
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