Latest Discussions : Painting


09:51AM | 09/04/00
Member Since: 09/03/00
2 lifetime posts
I have an home where the drywall and plaster wall (some of both) have may small cracks in them. Instead of individually repairing each crack I was told there is a mesh you could apply to the entire wall and then apply a thin coat of plaster or drywall compound. Does anyone know of a product like this.

Shawn Forney

03:04PM | 11/07/00
Member Since: 11/06/00
1 lifetime posts
I would also love the answer to this. I have removed years of paper and paint and I have found myself down to the brown coat. I do not believe there was ever a finish coat applied as all 4 walls (and probably the ceiling) are in this situation. If I do have to add a finish coat, what would be the proper approach to this. Thanks a bunch in advance!


08:19AM | 11/15/00
Member Since: 11/14/00
333 lifetime posts
Fiberglass mesh tape (about 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide) is generally used to tape drywall joints in lieu of traditional drywall "tape" (which is just a roll of 1-2 inch wide thick paper). It is strong, and easier to work with than traditional drywall tape because it sticks to the area (it has a slight tack to it), and you can spread joint filler through it (because it is mesh).

This fiberglass mesh tape can be used to patch small holes. Home Depot and all home centers (even many Ace Hardwares) sell patch kits with that fiberglass mesh tape in wider and square strips. The tape gives the joint compound something to cling to while it dries, and gives the patch structural support after it is dry, just as it does when used to connect drywall joints. Some patch kits have small metal plates attached to the tape for a still more secure patch. If you only have one or two mid-sized holes (no bigger than a softball) or minimal damage, then these do a good job.

But none of these kits will (or should) be used for a "blanket" repair job of an entire piece of drywall. If the entire wall or large segment of it is damaged, it probably would be better for you to just rip it down (or cut the damaged portion out) and replace it with new drywall. It sounds daunting, but it is much cheaper, better and easier than patching lots of holes or even extensive superficial (usually water) damage. Any holes or damage more than the size of a basketball are not worth patching with joint compound, alone. You will need to get a replacement piece of drywall and patch it into the hole with fiberglass tape or traditional drywall tape.

As such, there is no product that covers an entire wall or large portion of it, as you seemed to suggest in your question, because it is better and easier to replace an entire piece of drywall if the whole piece is damaged. Doing otherwise would require professional plastering experience, and any professional worth his salt would just replace the drywall instead of repair it.


08:31AM | 11/15/00
Member Since: 11/14/00
333 lifetime posts
Sorry, I re-read your post, and it had to do with cracks, not holes. Again, though, their is no "blanketing" product that I know of: the fiberglass tape is typically just like a roll of duct tape, although it can come in slightly larger strips in the patch kits. A "blanket" product would require too much plastering experience.

That said, the mesh tape is unnecessary for thin, small cracks. It is ideal, however, and rather necessary for sealing and supporting larger, longer cracks, individually, especially if the cracks are just from normal aging or settling process. It is found wherever drywall is sold, and often in hardware stores. If the house is still settling or shifting, the fiberglass tape will not be nearly strong enough to stop the crack from reappearing, but otherwise, it should do the trick.


04:10PM | 11/26/00
Member Since: 09/03/00
2 lifetime posts
I'm suprised that there isn't a product for the entire wall expecially for plaster walls. I do believe that drywall is best to replace but plaster walls are different. I did see on an old this old house at sometime where they refinished a plaster wall with some mess covered with a skim coat of plaster. Who know maybe is was dreaming.


02:02PM | 02/01/01
Member Since: 01/31/01
2 lifetime posts
I'm glad this was asked. I have a similar issue. I am on my first house (built in 1926). I have done small drywall work around the house. My question is if I take down the plaster walls, am I going to find it easy enough to replace with drywall? You know with the trusty Home Depot book?



04:14PM | 05/13/01
Member Since: 05/12/01
2 lifetime posts
We live in a house built in 1860's. Some plaster was in really bad condition but instead of tearing it out - really messy - we put 3/8 drywall over top. Thinner than regular drywall. I have since heard there is 1/4inch drywall available but not sure if this is accurate. We removed top baseboard moulding first then nailed it back on. The door moulding in our house was deep enough (1 - 11/2 inches) that we didn't remove it and still had lots of profile left. If shallow moulding is around doors, windows you may have to remove then build out with pine or some other wood and then reattach.


04:25AM | 05/27/01
Member Since: 05/26/01
3 lifetime posts
is it possible to retape dry wall.
we have ceilings that the taping is very badly done. teying to figure out a solution, or a coverup.
"tin"ceiling tiles? house is c.1810


12:30PM | 06/28/01
Member Since: 06/27/01
1 lifetime posts
How about Nu-Wall? I just read about it at:


08:19PM | 07/13/01
Member Since: 11/14/00
333 lifetime posts
Nu-Wall is probably the product to which "This Old House" referred (and that inspired this post in the first place), but it looks like it requires plastering skills. New drywall is much easier. As that one person recommended, you can put 3/8 inch drywall over existing walls. The thin drywall is bad on its own (very weak and almost a sound-amplifier, not a sound-barrier), but fine if there is an existing, supporting wall behind it.

[This message has been edited by Lawrence (edited July 14, 2001).]


01:27PM | 03/19/02
Member Since: 03/18/02
1 lifetime posts
We just recently layed tile on our bathroom floor. Before starting, we took off the rubbery/plastic trim stuff that was glued to the bottom of the wall (is it called a kickboard?). Anyway, it was stuck on with some serious stuff and it's ruined the drywall all the way round the bathroom from the floor up about 4-5 inches. There aren't any holes, it's just peeled a few layers down to the brown part. Are the methods described here the best way to fix that as well? We bought some drywall "mud" and thought the way to do it was peel away loose paper, apply the mud and sand then paint. Is this correct? Everything on the web talks about patching holes or cracks, nothing about this peeling problem. Thank in advance for any advice.


04:02PM | 03/19/02
If the only problem you have is peeled paper when the rubber base was removed you are correct. Just recoat it with joint compound (more than one coat may be required due to shrinkage) sand it smooth and repaint. Be sure to paint the raw joint compound with a good wall primer first or the patch will show through. If you have any areas with more serious damage that has compromised the structural integrity of the drywall you will need to use the fiberglass mesh described above or cut out the area and replace it.


05:42AM | 03/20/02
Member Since: 03/13/00
1674 lifetime posts
Leigh, why not cover the problem with a nice wood trim or with a single row of 6" tile that matches the floor tile?


03:54PM | 03/25/02
Member Since: 03/21/02
20 lifetime posts
The reason that you have cracks in the plaster is that , over the years, the house has settled/shifted. If you just cover it up with plaster, it may well crack again. THus the need for tape or the fiberglas tape, which indeed is better and easier to use.

I agree that the best approach is probably to go on top of the whole mess with 3/8" drywall. Sometimes this may not be practical, though, because the additional wall thickness is not OK (for example, if there is a doorway in the wall). IN that case, you should remove the existing plaster and leave the lath, then go over it with 5/8" drywall (or whatever thickness fits). The only other alternative is to hire a plasterer...but he will not want to go over a base plaster that is not solid.

By the way, doing a "skim coat" of plaster is not a job for someone who does not have experience. It takes a bit of practice to get it flat, and the beginner will have a hard time getting it right, even if they do several coats.

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