Houses are like cars: high maintenance. Just as your old clunker needs to plunk itself into the shop quite often, so too, does an old home need a lot of work. Owning a prewar home requires some give and take: there may be a lot of charm and interesting architectural details, but you can bet there will be a lot of work to accompany it.
Here’s the thing, though: it would be an utter shame to completely gut the interior of an aging beauty. With the exception of kitchens and bathrooms, which generally need overhaul remodels to offer the modern conveniences most homeowners expect, an old home usually just needs a few repairs – a little makeup, rather than reconstructive surgery. One of the biggest cosmetic complaints about old homes? Cracked plaster. Follow these steps for an easy guide on how to repair plaster walls that have developed ruptures over time.
Fixing Cracks in Old Plaster
1) Use a chisel to undercut the crack (make it wider), to create an opening for the plaster to hold on to.
2) With a putty knife, scrape away loose plaster and clean the area with a rag, ridding of all dust.
3) Using a paintbrush dipped in water, moisten the entire crack to help the plaster adhere.
4) Place a thin layer of plaster patching compound over the problem area using a putty knife for smooth application, and feathering the ends to help create a seamless transition.
5) Allowing the patched area to dry overnight, tackle the plaster again the next day using sandpaper placed around a sanding block. Start with a medium grit, switching to a finer paper as you finish.
6) Prime and paint your wall.
Though plaster is more prone to cracks and has a less regular finish than drywall, it incredibly sturdy and lends a warm look to your home – don’t cover it up with new sheeting just because you have a few cracks to contend with.
Keep tuning back for more features on home improvement!
The Team Edge Properties are Maryland Real Estate Agents who buy, renovate, and sell homes in Maryland.