How can we fix two plaster walls that are crumbling

Kevin LaBrie
by Kevin LaBrie

For some reason our two plaster wall are falling apart. We are raising our crandghilden and need an inexpensive way to do this. The house is 98 years old. The studs look okay. We are also in our sixties and don't have a lot of tools or strength'

We are sending pictures.

  8 answers
  • Dwp7470b Dwp7470b on Oct 25, 2018

    That sounds like a Simple Humidity Problem, that may have resolved had you caught itsooneer by a Dehumidifier.

    However it may be atmospheric in addition to a secondary Potential of either an Infestation, Mouse or Fungus that is in between the walls. Your best bet is to Cut Out a small chunk of the Trouble Area with a 3" Hole Saw Bit to look at that, and then take a Peek Inside to see if there are Hidden Problems and bait a mouse trap. If no problems are evident or in the trap after 4 days, it is then atmospheric or just plain old. Either way as It is Damaged you can very likely get your Homeowner's insurance to cover the cost of a Pro to do the Job of Replacing the damaged areas with a Decent Water and Humidity Resistant Drywall.

    • See 1 previous
    • Dwp7470b Dwp7470b on Oct 26, 2018

      Older homes have different insurance policy options. [See Sarah's Response below] They cover Water pipe Damages, etc. And if you can prove it wasn't: infestation or mouse, you have a claimonly when you submit a bill from a 'Qualified Pro'. Hence why I suggested a mouse trap and peeking for insects.

  • William William on Oct 25, 2018

    You would need to check if the rest of the plaster is sound and not separating from the lath. What did come of can be patched otherwise all the loose plaster would need to be removed and walls replastered or drywall installed.

  • 2dogal 2dogal on Oct 26, 2018

    The question is not how to fix the crumbling plaster, but what is causing it?? If you fix it without fixing the cause, it will continue to crumble. Is there a slow roof or water pipe leak?

  • C C on Oct 26, 2018

    I had a home that was built in 1850. The plaster back then was very different. What we opted to do was put 3/8” drywall right over the plaster. Worked beautifully! We were retired and did all the work ourselves. Not bad on the walls but horrible on the ceilings! LOL. I did skim coat a few walls using USG compound and then wallpaperedover them.

    Good luck. Take pictures and show us how you fixed it.

    • StefanieB StefanieB on Oct 26, 2018

      That's exactly what we did - drywall over the plaster, and we also did it ourselves.

  • Sarah Barganier Sarah Barganier on Oct 26, 2018

    Hi, since you home is older, did you buy the extra insurance that covers issues created by the home being older (a leak that ruins the floor, a sewer back up, etc) my husband and I did in 1975. When the washer on the ice maker started leaking and we did not see it until the entire kitchen floor was soft and needed to replace the insurance paid for the floor replace, but not the washer (the 10 cent replacement). Can't hurt to check with your agent.

  • Nancy Nancy on Oct 26, 2018

    If it's crumbling plaster, use white vinegar in a spray bottle, dampen the wall with vinegar and let dry. It should harden that you can patch over and make it smooth again.

  • Lisa Lisa on Oct 26, 2018

    Being the owner of a lath & plaster home, when it starts to crumble off the wall it is best to remove it all in thst area and replace it with drywall. Please be advised that some plaster could contain asbestos especially i. Older homes.

  • Kelly-n-Tony Kelly-n-Tony on Oct 26, 2018

    We have a chunk of plaster in our 100 yr old home trying to fall out and had looked at options as well. Here is a video that should help you-