Popcorn ceilings and walls?

schutjerMarch 24, 2011

We are looking to buy a home with a lot of the walls and ceilings in popcorn or other texture similar to popcorn. We hate this texture and am wondering if we can just cover with wood directly with removing texture?

If we decided to paint some areas, what is best removal method? House built 1956.

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worthy

best removal method?

Test for asbestos before disturbing in any way.

wondering if we can just cover with wood directly with removing texture?

Yes, fur out from the studs.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 9:45PM
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schutjer

Don't know what fur out from studs means?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 9:58PM
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sunnyca_gw

Friend put mask & goggles on & used a wide plastic spreader thing, think it was meant for wallpapering & scrapped it off the ceiling & then painted the smooth ceilings. On the walls popcorn would gouge very easily. Could use mask & goggles & open windows & power sander & see what happens. I think he means "far out from studs" Spelling isn't taught like it used to be, in our schools or kids aren't paying attention!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 12:42AM
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karinl

High probability that the popcorn contains asbestos, unless it's stipple rather than popcorn. I think acoustic tile itself can contain asbestos too though. Removal is largely about (a) working wet and (b) containment, but look it up for more detail.

Furring is nailing strips of wood over the studs and then drywalling onto the strips.

KarinL

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 2:11AM
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worthy

kids aren't paying attention!

Fer shure!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 10:51AM
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kimkitchy

Be sure the "popcorn" surfaces are tested for asbestos before you buy the house. I have to say that if it is positive for asbestos, and with as much popcorn on ceilings and walls as you say, then unless the house is remarkable in some way or a "whale of a deal", I would walk away and find a different house. Competent professional asbestos removal is expensive!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 11:13AM
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schutjer

Thanks for all the replies. Can't we just put drywall or wood over the existing walls? Can an inspector test walls, or give us an idea if it could have asbestos?

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 11:23AM
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worthy

It's a simple test for a lab. Here's a list of accredited labs. Make it part of your inspection. I'll venture that it's hard to find any homes built or renovated in that era that don't contain asbestos--from tiles, to texture, to shingles, to adhesives. Not mention all the lead paint.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 12:03PM
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kimkitchy

Worthy is right. Most will have it somewhere, disturbing asbestos is when you have a problem. So, I'll qualify my advice by saying, "if you are thinking of removing it", and you find asbestos everywhere, then I'd probably walk away. As for covering it up, I guess it comes back to whether or not you'd fracture the asbestos fibers in the process of installing something over it. Maybe someone else here can give you good advice about that.

I only base my opinion on the fact that we had an asbestos backed vinyl kitchen floor and a few heating system ducts covered in asbestos laden material (one was 80%) removed professionally and it cost about $5,000. Everyone will have their own choices to make with this stuff. One could argue we were overly cautious, and we probably could have removed the flooring safely enough ourselves, but we weren't at all comfortable removing the covered ducts ourselves. It just galled me to spend $5,000 to remove something and "get" nothing for it when I was spending a huge amount of money renovating the kitchen. (I realize maybe I "got" a healthier future! LOL). Anyway... stepping off my soapbox... somebody else?

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 1:18PM
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badgergrrl

If your house was built in 1956, there's most likely asbestos and lead paint somewhere. Asbestos is only a problem when it's disturbed, causing it to become airborne and thus inhalable. Cover up the popcorn and it'll be fine.
Oh, and don't eat the lead paint. :)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 5:25PM
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gordon_2010

I believe the spelling should be "Fir". As I understand it, it's known as "Firring" because a cheaper grade of wood, usually a type of "Fir" or pine, was used to make the strips out of that attach to the ceiling and then the ceiling boards, panels or ceiling tile are attached to that. This gives a 3/4 inch or so space or drop between the existing ceiling and the new one. That's my understandingâ¦although, as often pointed out by my wife, my understanding is not always correct. :-)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 9:30PM
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badgergrrl
    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 12:21AM
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badgergrrl

That should be NON-limeys...

We REALLY need an edit button.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 12:25AM
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brickeyee

Furring.

Unless the surface is already flat it can be a real PITA to shim the new wood to flat.

It is actually usually much easier and faster to pit small sisters on the side of the joists or studs and make the face of the new wood flat, or for masonry to just build a stud wall just in front of the masonry.

It makes insulation and electrical wiring a lot easier also.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 9:39AM
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