How do I repair lath and plaster walls?

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The "retirement home" we just purchased was built in 1901 and had additions added in 1950. The lath and plaster walls need repair - is there a better way than tearing them out and replacing with sheetrock? Thanks !

  6 answers
  • Tree Tree on Aug 06, 2018

    If the walls are floating they need to be torn out. If you’re repairing holes just plaster them over.

  • Zard Pocleeb Zard Pocleeb on Aug 06, 2018

    Hire a contractor who specializes in this type of work. This requires a highly qualified person, or the outcome will not be good.

  • 2dogal 2dogal on Aug 06, 2018

    You can skim coat the entire wall. Or not tear out the existing wall, but install thin sheetrock sheets over the existing lathe and plaster. That's a viable option.

  • Oliva Oliva on Aug 06, 2018

    See "www.thisoldhouse.com/how-to/how-to-repair-lath-and-plaster"

  • Thelma Thelma on Aug 06, 2018

    Hi Joyce, As long as the laths are still good and solid, you can simply re-plaster the areas that need repaired. Be sure to feather it out onto the existing plaster so the walls will be smooth for painting; walls need to be primed before painting. If the laths are broken, loose, etc. you will have to tear out enough of the walls to be able to replace the lath. Good Luck.

  • Joyce M Schemonia Joyce M Schemonia on Aug 13, 2018

    Thanks everyone, I appreciate your suggestions.

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