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Redleg
Old drywall tape

I went through 4 pages looking to see if there was an answer first, but didn't see what I was looking for.

Bought our 30+ yr old ranch style home in May 05, and some of the ceilings showed tape separating from the joints. We left most of them as is, except for one room that was really bad, and the drywall was sagging some at the joints. Found out later that the drywall was not installed correctly. Meaning they weren't running with the joists, but opposite them, so on the ends and some of the sides of the drywall was not matching up with the joists. Haven't felt like tearing it all down and putting up new drywall the correct way yet, due to $$$. But, will do it some day. My question, after all that is, how long should drywall tape adhere(sp) on the ceilings, at the joints? There's been no water damage to any of the ceilings, that I can find. I'm just thinking that the original job wasn't done properly, and it's finally showing up.

Any other ideas, and solutions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,

A. Spruce
Re: Old drywall tape

There is no "expiration date" on drywall, it's either done right and lasts a lifetime or it's not and starts failing at some point. What you describe sounds like poor quality workmanship and possibly the wrong materials.

The drywall shouldn't be sagging. Barring moisture problems, sagging can be caused by a number of things, but it's usually either the wrong type of drywall (should be 5/8" or reinforced 1/2" ), uneven ceiling joists, or insufficient fasteners. The direction it is running on the joists has little to do with it, though perpendicular to the joists is most common.

Barring moisture problems, joint tape releasing is the result of either not enough joint compound being applied under the tape or too much being removed during the installation process.

If the overall condition of the drywall is decent, more fasteners can be added and the joints retaped.

Redleg
Re: Old drywall tape

Thanks for your answer. I didn't think there was a "expiration date" either, but wanted another opinion. I'm leaning to shoddy workmanship.
The drywall itself is decent, but the ceilings are 'textured' and I'm not re-texturing(sp) them. hate that stuff. :(

Thanks again,

A. Spruce
Re: Old drywall tape
Redleg wrote:

Thanks for your answer. I didn't think there was a "expiration date" either, but wanted another opinion. I'm leaning to shoddy workmanship.
The drywall itself is decent, but the ceilings are 'textured' and I'm not re-texturing(sp) them. hate that stuff. :(

Thanks again,

You're welcome.

If the ceilings are popcorn (acoustic ) textured, I couldn't agree more, but you still don't have to drop the ceilings to get rid of it or retape.

  1. Remove all furnishings and tarp the floor with painters plastic
  2. Get a 1 gallon pump up spray bottle and fill it with warm water, pump it up and lightly spray the popcorn, let it soak in and repeat several times. This will soften and loosen the acoustic texture so that it can be easily scraped off.
  3. Using a 6" drywall knife or a long handled scraper, scrape the ceiling as clean as you can. A floor scraper is basically just a drywall knife on a broom handle.
  4. Sweep off the walls and roll the debris up in the floor tarp, bag and throw in the garbage can.
  5. Lay new tarp on floor, add more fasteners (screws work the best ) as necessary, and retape the joints.
  6. You've probably scuffed the drywall in spots during the texture removal, you can carefully peel off the loose flags and swipe some mud over them. For more severe damage you can lay a piece of tape over it.
  7. Skim coat the entire ceiling to smooth out areas of damage, joints, and texture remnants.
  8. If you prefer a flat ceiling, you're done, if you prefer a light texture, you can either do what's known as a skip trowel which is applied with a drywall knife, or an orange peel/knock-down, which is blown on with a texture hopper and left (orange peel ) or lightly flattened with a drywall knife (knock-down ).
  9. Once everything is dry, you're ready for two coats of a good quality primer (Kilz or Bull's Eye 123 ), and two coats of good quality paint.
havanagranite
Re: Old drywall tape
A. Spruce wrote:

You're welcome.

If the ceilings are popcorn (acoustic ) textured, I couldn't agree more, but you still don't have to drop the ceilings to get rid of it or retape.

  1. Remove all furnishings and tarp the floor with painters plastic
  2. Get a 1 gallon pump up spray bottle and fill it with warm water, pump it up and lightly spray the popcorn, let it soak in and repeat several times. This will soften and loosen the acoustic texture so that it can be easily scraped off.
  3. Using a 6" drywall knife or a long handled scraper, scrape the ceiling as clean as you can. A floor scraper is basically just a drywall knife on a broom handle.
  4. Sweep off the walls and roll the debris up in the floor tarp, bag and throw in the garbage can.
  5. Lay new tarp on floor, add more fasteners (screws work the best ) as necessary, and retape the joints.
  6. You've probably scuffed the drywall in spots during the texture removal, you can carefully peel off the loose flags and swipe some mud over them. For more severe damage you can lay a piece of tape over it.
  7. Skim coat the entire ceiling to smooth out areas of damage, joints, and texture remnants.
  8. If you prefer a flat ceiling, you're done, if you prefer a light texture, you can either do what's known as a skip trowel which is applied with a drywall knife, or an orange peel/knock-down, which is blown on with a texture hopper and left (orange peel ) or lightly flattened with a drywall knife (knock-down ).
  9. Once everything is dry, you're ready for two coats of a good quality primer (Kilz or Bull's Eye 123 ), and two coats of good quality paint.

my friend mr. spruce sir. not trying to make a big issue of anything but in number 8 a skip trowel texture is a plastering technique done with a hawk and "trowel" thus the name skip trowel, not a drywall knife.

this is good post the only problem may be if they painted over the popcorn ceiling then the water won't penatrate well. and if they did then its going to be a lot of scraping. you also can go to home depot and rent a porter cable drywall sander use a heavy grit and turn the speed on the sander down to about 2 just take off the big stuff with the heavy grit then change to a 220 to sand down smoother, keeping the sander moving so as no not oversand an area. it also comes with a hose so you can hook it up to a shop vac to reduce the dust. (buy extra filters and have someone keep changing filters and taking them outside and cleaning them out)

A. Spruce
Re: Old drywall tape

Havana, you'll have to take it up with my drywall contractor. :D He uses an 18" knife and mud pan. The knife has a bend and an offset handle that allows getting the knife flatter to the wall than a traditional knife. If these implements go by other names, I don't know them. I just use a 12" knife because it's what I have and I don't ever do more than patch work that needs this type of texture. I found a picture and description:

Wal-board 18" Curved Blade Knife w/ 18" Slanted Handle

Now, if ya wants to quibble over semantics and it ain't called skip troweling, then what is it when you put a touch of sand in the mud, put a thin curl on the edge of the knife and lightly drag it across the surface, producing random flat smooshies (that's a technical term, right?:D )? I've always known it as skip trowel.

Ejumakate us man! If you won't who will?:D

canuk
Re: Old drywall tape

Ok you guys .... no mud slinging here.:D:p:D

A. Spruce
Re: Old drywall tape
canuk wrote:

Ok you guys .... no mud slinging here.:D:p:D

We wouldn't be in this mess if someone would do a little R&D on a proper staple gun and reformulated caulk!:p:p:p

havanagranite
Re: Old drywall tape
A. Spruce wrote:

We wouldn't be in this mess if someone would do a little R&D on a proper staple gun and reformulated caulk!:p:p:p

wow man your toooo much:D

honestly I have never seen anyone do a skip trowel with a bent knife, I have only seen them use that knife for knock down. (surly not that I have seen everything concerning drywall ) I don't think I could do if fast enough with a knife. but always amazed at how people are able to adapt many different tools to do different finishes.

canuk
Re: Old drywall tape

NOOOOOOOOO .... please don't start that. :eek::D

A. Spruce
Re: Old drywall tape
havanagranite wrote:

wow man your toooo much:D

What good is being an old timer if you can't toss out a little fun once in a while? :p

havanagranite wrote:

honestly I have never seen anyone do a skip trowel with a bent knife,

AHAA! Now I think we're on to something ... ;)

I've enjoyed meeting new tradesmen over the years and the myriad of ways we have of doing the same thing. It's kind of like sidewinder saws versus wormdrives. East coasters and DIY'r types tend to prefer sidewinders, while west coasters prefer wormdrives. Both saws do the same thing, it's user comfort/preference. Back on topic, it's the same with drywall techniques. Ultimately, as long as the job is done properly, who cares what tools you've used (no matter how silly a hod and trowel are ... :p;) ).:D

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