What's the best, idiot-proof way of redoing a cottage cheese ceiling?
Would still like texture since the ceiling and all is an echoey
concrete condo box, but no artistic skills - is there a template
pattern that can be smooshed up there? Some kit from home depot or
I heard the 1970's era cottage may contain asbestos - right? Still I
gather it can be removed DIY with some wetting down and scraping. thx
If you're worried about asbestos, check out here:
Can you coat over it? Many times, as you might see on the EPA site,
the best way to deal with asbestos is to leave it in place if it's not
something that'll be disturbed. Maybe you could carefully coat over
I had some luck making a stippled ceiling in a small area with some
drywall mud mixed with white ceiling paint. Apply the mud to the
ceiling in a moderate coat (maybe 1/8" thick or so). Take a stipple
brush (or in one case I used a push-broom head) and press the bristles
into the mud and pull back out. It'll look rather sharp and spikey,
but you can leave it and knock it down a little later - once the mud is
somewhat dry, you can take a wide putty knife or scraper and knock off
as much or as little of the spikes as you like, leaving behind a
finished texture. The wetter it is when you scrape it the more
"leather-like" and flat it'll be after scraping.
Not sure if it's analogous to dealing with asbestos, but when dealing with
lead paint, the best way is sometimes to install a mechanical barrier,
rather than pollute the house with it. I found lead paint 3 layers down when
I was ready to deal with my plaster ceiling, which was full of cracks. We
ended up hiring someone to drywall over the whole thing. This produced very
Probably the best way to handle it is call a couple of professionals.
Drywall texture and acustic may not cost as much as you think, if your
willing to do the masking and the cleanup you can really get a good
It very likely contains asbestos, and if you may want to sell the place someday,
cottage cheese is a big asthetic negative to most buyers. This would be the time
to do things right. There are other, better ways to deal with echoes.
Commodore Joe Redcloud
I took down our cottage cheese ceiling that contained asbestos. In my
area it required a permit and hazardous waste disposal. We had nicely
finished plaster ceilings underneath, so the job was pretty simple.
However, unless you are recovering a good ceiling underneath the
cheese, I would just sheetrock over the top of it. You could spend as
much time repairing the sheetrock and joints after removal as you would
taping and mudding a new ceiling. It is possible that the drywallers
didn't tape and mud the original ceiling in the first place, meaning
you will spend more time removing the ceiling than you would installing
new over the top.
Get the ceiling tested for asbestos, it's a lot easier and less
expensive to remove if there is no asbestos, even if you DIY. You
won't need HEPA filter masks or pay for hazardous waste disposal if it
turns out to have no asbestos.
Builders out here love the stuff. Almost every McMansion has "textured"
ceilings and walls, and the buyers think they're getting something
special -- LOL! The same crew of Mexicans who spray the fake stucco
outside bring their hopper guns indoors, reload with drywall mud, and
let it rip.
It's the modern equivalent of Pepto-Bismo pink bathrooms. I have that. I'm
in the process of casing quarry sites and their storage facilities,
preparing to steal enough explosives to make the tile removal MUCH easier.
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