10 (Simple) Steps To Repairing Hairline Cracks in Plaster Ceiling | Causes of Hairline Cracks
Causes of Hairline Cracks in Plaster Ceiling | Steps to Repairing Hairline Cracks in Plaster Ceiling
Hairline Cracks in Plaster Ceiling
Hairline cracks in plaster ceilings are not uncommon and can be due to a variety of different reasons.
Hairline cracks in plaster ceilings could be due to temperature changes in the room, plumbing under the ceiling, or even changes in the building itself.
The most common cause of hairline cracks in plaster ceilings are due to mechanical stress exerted through expansion and contraction of the building with changes in temperature.
It is important to determine the root cause of the hairline cracks in plaster ceilings before undertaking any repairs.
In the event of mechanical stress, it is important to determine whether or not the hairline cracks are a result of expansion and contraction or due to the stress being transferred through plumbing work.
Causes of Hairline Cracks in Plaster Ceiling
- Plaster is dry-wall, plaster or gypsum applied to the surface of walls and ceilings. Hairline cracks in plaster ceilings are caused by earthquakes, foundation movement, atmospheric changes or other factors that can affect a plaster surface that is susceptible to cracking if it isn’t properly maintained.
- Hairline cracks in plaster ceiling occur when the wall moves slightly because of small changes in humidity levels or different temperatures at various times of the year can cause hairline cracks to appear over time.
- Other major factors that can cause cracks is dry wall from lack of paint, moisture or other reasons for surface to fall apart along the surface of the plaster. Hairline cracks in plaster ceiling over window frames are common for this reason and are repaired fairly easily.
- Damage from water can cause hairline cracks in plaster ceiling. Moisture from rain, snow or dew entering your house via attic holes, windows and faulty roofing is a common source of hairline cracks in plaster ceiling.
- Heavy objects placed on plaster ceiling can cause hairline cracks in plaster ceiling. The weight of an object is not usually enough to cause hairline cracks in plaster ceiling, but heavy and repeated use can eventually cause the surface to crack.
- When wood beams expand and contract because of changes in temperature and moisture, they can cause constant shifting of the structure causing the walls or ceilings to shift slightly. This can be a common source for hairline cracks in plaster ceiling..
Repairing Hairline Cracks in Plaster Ceiling
- Use a putty knife to remove the loose plaster
- Clean the area to be repaired
- Mix a small amount of plaster to create a putty-like consistency
- Fill in the cracks by Applying a thin coat of plaster patching compound over the crack , using a putty knife or trowel/
- Apply the putty over the crack, then smooth it out until it is even with the surface, then let it dry completely
- Allow it to dry for 30-45 minutes and then sand with fine grit sandpaper until smooth
- Paint over the area that has been patched with a coat of paint or primer before retouching any other cracks in your ceiling
- Apply two coats of paint over the patched surface to match existing wall color
- Use a damp cloth to wipe away any excess paint that may have leaked onto adjacent surfaces
- If you have more than one hairline crack, repeat steps all steps again until all cracks are patched
Hairline Cracks In Plaster Ceiling FAQs
1. What causes hairline cracks in plaster ceilings?
Plaster ceiling cracks are often caused by two factors: home settling and temperature or moisture changes in an attic, which cause structural components to expand or contract.
Solution: Homeowners can use fresh plaster to repair these frequent hairline cracks and repaint the ceiling.
2. What is the best way to fix hairline cracks in a plaster ceiling?
The most popular option is to seal the crack with spackling and then paint over it, but this is just a temporary remedy because the crack will generally reappear as the seasons change.
A better approach is to cover the crack with drywall compound and tape to prevent it from revealing out.
3. Should I be concerned with hairline cracks in a plaster ceiling?
Many people have a fear of hairline cracks in their ceilings. These cracks can be unsightly and give off a bad impression of the home.
Fortunately, these cracks are not very serious. They are, in fact, harmless. Hairline cracks in a wall are a natural consequence of the plaster (or paint) drying as it is applied.
Most hairline cracks are only the width of a hair and have no risk of growing or getting worse. There are things that you can do to help to reduce or get rid of hairline cracks in your ceilings.
One option is to put several coats of primer or paint on the wall to create a smoother surface for your plaster or paint.
Another option is to be sure that your plaster does not become too dry. For example, you can keep the amount of air that you open your window to around one inch. Make sure that you are not holding the door open any wider than necessary.
Hairline cracks can be unsightly but tend to be harmless and cannot grow or get worse. The width of a hairline crack is much narrower than a quarter and is unlikely to get bigger.
4. Is it common for plaster to have hairline cracks?
If your house has plastered walls, straight vertical fractures are common as the plaster swells in dampness and shrinks as it dries. These are common and are the sort of cracks you’ll discover in a new construction property.
5. How do you stop hairline cracks in plaster?
If your plaster is spalled, these problems can be solved by adding a second coat to the plaster.
This is done by first using a razor blade to scrape off whatever plaster is still stuck on the wall, then after cleaning and drying both surfaces, you can apply another layer of plaster using the original coats as a model for how much needs to be applied.
6. What are hairline cracks in a ceiling?
Hairline cracks are very light vertical fractures that appear in walls and ceilings. They are often referred to as plaster cracks.
Hairline cracks look like the lines found on a sheet of paper when it is folded. They may be light brown, tan or white in color.
Although hairline cracks are too narrow to pinch between your fingers, they can enlarge and form a crack that is more noticeable than a hairline one.
Hairline cracks in ceilings usually have the same appearance and cause as those in walls although they can be caused by different factors.
7. Will paint fill hairline cracks?
Paint will fill hairline cracks, but you must choose the right color and will need to apply more coats. The color of the plaster can be a very important factor in selecting the best paint for hairline cracks.
A good rule of thumb is to use white or off-white paint on a wall that has fractured areas along its length. If you use gray or light brown paint, it may look cloudy and dull on these areas.
For larger hairline cracks, use a filler to seal the gaps before applying a new layer of paint to the affected area.
However, if a large area has been damaged, scrape off the paint and then sand the entire area to level out the edges before putting a fresh coat of paint.
8. Why is my skim coat cracking?
The major reason behind this is because the skim coat material dried too rapidly. Temperature and surface changes When skim coat is applied in hot or windy circumstances, it dries too rapidly.
A Skim coat is one of the thin coats that are applied to smooth out the surface imperfections.
However, a skim coat that has been put on too thick or is not screeded properly can cause hairline cracks in its plaster surface.
9. What happens if I apply an incorrect color to my plaster?
You may have reapplied the paint on your ceiling with an incorrect color so that your outer wall appears twisted instead of being straight.
If you had to repaint your plaster wall, the color that was previously applied can be used again.
However, if you are repainting from scratch, you will need to choose a new color or new finish for your plaster material.
Hairline cracks can also make it difficult to maintain a property’s appearance. Repainting your ceiling with the wrong color or finishing could also make it clear that your ceiling needs painting.