I have a popcorn ceiling that is in need of replacement. Here it is
2007 and I'm wondering what is the most popular ceiling option these
days? I keep hearing the terms "Skip Trowel", "Textured", and "Flat",
but am not sure which of these options is the most "popular" these
days. I'm planning on doing the work myself, so if possible, I would
like an option that does not require a lot of experience, or expensive
equipment to purchase. Are there any good Web Sites out there that can
give you good "how to" information on this subject?
I'm told that a plain simple finish shows any imperfections. What
tools and advice can you suggest regarding getting rid of all these
imperfections? I'm thinking of a plain simple white finish, and maybe
putting some crown molding around the edges. Sound good?
On 2 Jan 2007 05:32:37 -0800, samadams firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
It's just a frikkin house. Who cares about a few imperfections.
People used to live in caves and there were lots more imperfections in
them. Your life will not end because you can see a few trowel marks
on your ceiling. And who gives a fuck what is popular. People who
need to follow fads and need others determine their lives are
generally losers themselves. Do what appeals to you, or just move to
a rental where your landlord is in charge of the home and you dont
have to use your mind to make decisions.
Advice? - You'll get what you pay for, so pay for a book:
Personally, I like crown molding. Getting a smooth finish on the ceiling
is not hard, its just time consuming and depends on how much of a
perfectionist you want to be.
Would your home design permit a "Spanish" stuccoed look? If done
well, by a professional who understands not going overboard for the
Spanish look -- or by your good self if you have studied up and done
some practice stucco-ing on a throw-away surface -- this works
beautifully to hide potential imperfections. I have that look on the
ceilings of all my plastered OR wallpapered rooms.
Beware that older homes can have traces of asbestos in the popcorn
ceiling. I suggest getting it tested (most professionals will include
this in the estimate, and might even be required by law). If you will
be doing this yourself, make sure to wear a mask. It's probably a
good idea to seal off the room with plastic sheets as you're in for a
Unless the popcorn has been painted, just wet it first, and IF there is any
asbestos, it won't float around on the breeze. If it HAS been painted, just
wear a good filter, and wet it when it hits the floor. Have fans running to
suck air out of the room and blow it in at the same time.
One regular room does not require heroic steps or expensive testing. And
the chances are that it doesn't have asbestos anyway.
The dust is the dangerous thing. Don't let it get dusty. Use either water
or air flow.
And get it tested BEFORE you do the job if you're that afraid.
If you take some basic precautions it can be done without
contaminating your house. You should secure plastic over the floor
and walls, making a plastic bowl of sorts. Isolate the room and use
plenty of water. An asbestos abatment contractor would be the best
choice, and may be the only legal choice depending where you live and
if you are in a free-standing stucture or in a multi unit
If you look at the first picture on the above page you can see a
portion of the plastic setup looks like for popcorn removal.
It takes a lot more pounds of popcorn than you'd think. I once did a
12x15 ceiling and I think I had to pop about 15lbs of corn. Then,
there's the caramel used to hold the popcorn on the ceiling. I think
I used about 1.5to 2 lbs of caramel per square foot. They are quite
costly ceilings. I perfer to just use paint these days and leave the
flat ceiling. It's much cheaper and easier to do.
Popcorn textured ceilings require very little skill to apply and have
look passable which is why they are so common. The popcorn covers poorly
taped drywall joints, thickness variations in the popcorn aren't very
noticeable and a ceiling can be sprayed with popcorn in a few minutes.
All other available ceiling finishes (excluding such things as pressed
metal tiles) require significantly more skill and time to apply and have
Except patching up an existing popcorn ceiling and trying to make it match
is still a challenge to me so I called in a pro and he said he couldn't make
it match either. He wanted to do a complete spray job which cost just a
little more than trying to match the existing so he wasn't looking for extra
I think it was samadams email@example.com who stated:
I just dealt with that in a bathroom. What I did was to scrape off the
popcorn with a wide putty knife, vacuuming the stuff up as I went.
After two or three passes, I had a surface that looked mottled and
pitted, but in a mostly uniform way all over the ceiling. I primed it
and painted it and it looks MUCH better.
I have no idea if it would be "popular", nor do I care. *I* like the
look of it; more importantly, SWMBO likes the look of it (it's HER
bathroom, after all ;^) and what else matters unless we're going to be
giving tours to the public?
It also required no "experience, or expensive equipment to purchase".
Enjoy . . . .
On the other hand, you have different fingers
It is encapsulated and harmless until you go at it with a scraper. Then you
are releasing asbestos fibers into the air and it is no longer harmless.
While I agree that the issue is often overblown and a whole industry has
sprouted around "asbestos abatement" asbestos is a very real health concern
and scraping away at a popcorn ceiling that contains it is not a good idea.
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