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Painting over cracked paint walls

Does anyone know if one can just paint over walls that were painted years ago and the paint has tiny cracks all over the place? I think this is known as crocodiled paint, but I'm not sure. Will a layer or two of latex paint fill the cracks well enough? These are older plaster walls.

Re: Painting over cracked paint walls

No. Paint will not fill in the cracks and make it look nice. There are only a few solutions to this; wallpapering, removal of the pain down to the bare plaster and repainting or priming and skimcoating. All of these are labor intensive. You will have to decide what is easier for your self depending on your skill level and time.

Tacoma John
Re: Painting over cracked paint walls

The only time I have seen alligatoring of paint inside was caused by water. Once was in a bath where they used flat paint, the other was when a roof leaked. I would check for water and how well the paint is adhering. If both check out good, use Peel Stop as a primer. It acts like a buffer between the old paint and the new. Look at your finish to determine if you need to skim coat it. Good luck

Re: Painting over cracked paint walls

If removal of the old problematic surface isn't going to happen, I'd sand it all lightly, skim-coat the cracks with drywall compound, sand that smooth and apply the best primer I could afford, then paint with a good quality paint. This no guarantee of a permanent fix but it should hold up well and be easily redone when the next color goes on. In the meantime it will look nice.

Whatever the cause, 'gatoring' is actually shrinkage of the coating which creates all those little cracks. I know of nothing which will prevent that from continuing so until it decides it's done shrinking it is just a question of how best to deal with it.


Re: Painting over cracked paint walls

No, you can't you have to strip the walls, replaster, sand and paint with primer already in the paint. It sounds hard but it's not. Taking it down was easy. Replaster not so easy, but you can do it. I did.

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