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prepping old plaster walls

We are in the process of removing many layers of old wallpaper from our 1900 walls. The plaster appears to be in good shape so far -- only a minor crack here and there. The paper had started "bubbling" like there may have been a moisture problem at some time. My question, is there anything that I should apply to the plaster before applying paint?

Re: prepping old plaster walls

I Will Have The Same Problem, Removed Od Wallpaper And All Kinds Of Imperfections Such As Paint Coming Off, Causing Uneveness, How Can I Make The Walls Good To Paint Again, Do They Make Such A Product.

Re: prepping old plaster walls

Check your walls for stability. Check your walls for stability by pushing on them gently. There will be a certain amount of inherent flexibility in 1900 plaster that will allow some movement. For cracks place your thumb across the crack and using your other hand push on the plaster on one side of the crack and then on the other. If you can feel any movement across the crack it is unstable and needs to be fixed with adhesives. This was demonstrated on Ask This Old House show #603. Do not rake out the crack to fill it, this will weaken the plaster by breaking the fibrous binder.
If the plaster is stable all your repair issues are cosmetic. I would prime your plaster surface first to show you where the divots are located. If the divots are not too deep multiple thin layers of joint compound will fill them in nicely then the wall can be finished with a damp sponge. good luck I hope this answers your questions.

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