Painted Ceiling?

mom2sethcSeptember 24, 2008


Has anyone done a painted ceiling instead of drywall or drop? I've seen them done in dark colors, like brown or black. If so, I'd love to hear about yours and see pics!



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Elaine, I am just a few weeks away from painting my ceiling. I have seen black and off white. The black looked nice, but showed every spec of dust and cobwebs, big time, so I am leaning towards an off white. (Sorry no pics)
my basement has little nat. light and that makes me lean towards the lighter color as well. I'll post picks as soon as I get it sprayed. BTW, haven't decided if I'll paint ducts or leave them silver?? Thoughts anyone?

    Bookmark   September 29, 2008 at 3:54PM
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I never thought about the dust/cobweb issue! Maybe white is the way to go? I'd love to see pics of yours when you are done. We are thinking about painting some of the pipes/ductwork in bright fun primary colors. Our basement will be used as a rec room. We'll have a pool table, games, tv, some seating, etc. We also don't have a lot of natural light in our basement. Just a few small basement windows. Please post pics if you can!


    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 8:45AM
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I grew up in a house with a painted basement ceiling. Ours was black and it disguised all the wiring and pipes. Dad painted it by hand and I have no idea how many gallons it took but many.

It was always dusty and my Mother who was a clean freak was always carrying a stool around to clean the basement.

Basements tend to gather dust because the house mechanicals are there. Memories of my youth are the reason my basement is drywalled. Easy maintenance. Clean the corners and can lights with a feather duster. Done!

Personally I'd rethink the painted basement ceiling. They might work fine in a commercial building with really high space but not in a standard basement where you see everything. It will be there no matter what color you paint.

Hope this helps and enjoy the space when it is finished.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 10:16AM
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Thank you for the information. The reason that we are considering painting it is because it is a standard 8 foot basement. If we were to drywall or do a drop ceiling, we'd lose even more heigth. We were thinking that painting it wouldn't take away from the heigth. We would also have it professionally painted, we wouldn't attempt to do it ourselves. It will be a while before we need to decide, my husband will be starting the framing over the winter. Thank you for sharing your experience with it!


    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 9:28AM
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Our basement is standard depth too - actually slightly less than 8 feet.

In order to drywall the ceiling we lost 2". Installed 2 x 4's on their sides in order to "bridge" plumbing and electrical which had been hung on the underside of the rafters. Then the drywall thickness. It finished at 7.5 feet and a 10" drop below the ducting. I believe using a drop ceiling might cost additional height but not positive.

Here is a link to photos of ours. Really not focused on the ceiling however unless someone is really tall, I don't believe the slight loss of ceiling height should be a factor.

Good luck finishing yours.

Here is a link that might be useful: Our Basement

    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 9:53AM
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Very nice basement! Thanks for sharing the photos. My preference would be drywall over drop. I'll share the information with my hubby so he can mull it over.


    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 3:40PM
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I friend of mine spray painted their ceiling black. I think it looks very cool. It is much "cooler" looking then a drop ceiling.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 4:06PM
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Stir fryi,

Thanks for the information! Black is what we are considering. We are also thinking about painting the pipes/ductwork a bright primary color.


    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 9:23AM
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We have a small 80-year-old home. The bottoms of our joists are 82" from the basement floor. We need the basement to be as useful, attractive, and comfortable as the rest of the house, so we considered every conceivable option in finishing.

After extensive consideration, we ended up painting the ceiling dark brown (flat RL Starry Night from Home Depot). I used a $150 Wagner Paint Crew Plus sprayer, and can't imagine how it could be done with a brush. With the sprayer, it was breeze and by all accounts (even my highly skeptical parents') looks fabulous--even better than I could have hoped.

We decided not to worry too much about light. First of all, it's a small, low-ceilinged basement with little natural light. Painting the ceiling a light color was not going to fool anyone into thinking it was a bright and airy space. Second, if we hated the paint, no harm done--we can always drywall or install a drop ceiling later without having wasted too much time or money on the paint.

I taped off all the ductwork and new copper plumbing before painting and really like that effect.

Regarding cobwebs--I have definitely noticed some already. We have had carpentry and drywall sanding and tile cutting going on down there, so there is a ton of construction dust. So far the cobwebs don't bother me--a swipe with the Pledge duster is all it takes to get rid of them. Ask me again in a year or so, though--I might have a different opinion then. :)

The pics linked below are probably not the best example for you; they were taken to record the locations of wires and things, not for decorative purposes. Trim is going up this weekend and then we have a few more projects to finish down there, but we should have pictures of the completed basement soon. I'll keep an eye on this thread and repost with new pics then.

Here is a link that might be useful: Basement In Progress

    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 1:20AM
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Thanks so much for posting your experience and pictures! From what I can see, it does look really nice! Glad to hear that it was easy enough to do with the sprayer. Please do post pics of your basement when it is finished!


    Bookmark   October 8, 2008 at 9:40AM
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Hi, this is an old post and you've probably already done it, but we just painted our lower basement ceiling flat dark brown - link's below - happy with the results.

Here is a link that might be useful: painted exposed ceiling

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 6:45AM
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