What is on your ceiling?

musicteacherApril 19, 2014

After 2 weeks of spending every spare minute scraping popcorn off my ceiling we have decided to hire someone to do the rest. (the good news is I lost 5 lbs! : )) I have to decide on a texture. I did the dining room flat. Well, as flat as I could get it. I like the clean look. The painter (not a decorator) told me the den would look better with a knockdown texture to match the walls. I imagine it is hard to make that transition from uneven walls to even ceiling. The kitchen has smooth walls and the living room has picture frame paneling and dark wood floors. Should all the rooms have the same texture? Color? After sweeping cobwebs off the ceiling and being showered with white stuff I am loath to add any texture to the ceiling but am afraid that I am being short sighted. My neighbor had her ceilings done in beige orange peel and they look nice almost like fabric - kind of fuzzy? What do newer houses have on the ceilings?

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Fun2BHere

I love smooth ceilings and smooth walls as they are much easier to keep dust-free. The down side to smooth walls is that you can see every little nick and smudge. I can't see a down side to smooth ceilings if they are properly taped and bedded so that they are truly smooth.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 11:55AM
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blfenton

(I'm assuming you did an asbestos test on the popcorn ceiling before tackling it yourself)

When we did ours the contractor just put gyprock up onto the ceiling and left the popcorn texture in place but it's now hidden.

I love the flat ceiling. When we had the popcorn ceiling, I always noticed the ceiling, but now that it's flat I never even look at it, it has basically disappeared. For my taste, unless your ceiling is part of the decorating style of the house (cove ceiling, etc) I see nothing attractive about them. I vote for plain everywhere. But, that's just my 2c.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 1:05PM
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ailene54

My daughter just bought an apartment with a popcorn wall in the living room, and same on bathroom ceiling. How hard was it to remove? She plans on scraping before she moves in, and then painting. I suggested she keep walls slightly textured but like you she wants them smooth. Some of my ceilings have sand, others are smooth, I personally like sand more.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 1:12PM
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madeyna

Popcorn ceilings are easy to remove unless they have been painted over. I am interested in nonsmooth ceiling options as well. I have textured walls and a smooth ceiling in several rooms and it looks really good but the smooth ceilings are alot more labor intensive

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 2:13PM
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tibbrix

I love rustic ceilings..bead board, pine planks, etc., esp. for rooms like dens, librariesâ¦places you want to be cozy and/or relax in. On the link, click on each colored square under the pic. Each is a different design.

Here is a link that might be useful: Armstrong wood plank ceilings.

This post was edited by Tibbrix on Sat, Apr 19, 14 at 14:52

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 2:51PM
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ailene54
    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 4:09PM
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musicteacher

Ilene, the popcorn is not that hard to remove, but is a nasty, sloppy job. You have to cover walls and floors with plastic, and it still escapes. Blobs of white gooey stuff everywhere. The next step for me was harder. Evidently for popcorn they don't have to really finish the wallboard so I had to put several coats of mud over the tape lines, nail holes, and even replace some of the tape. I bought a garden sprayer but it just squirted and dripped on the floor so I used a water spray bottle. I also tried that thing you attach to to a long pole, with a bag to catch the garbage. It was too hard for me to handle and I gouged the ceiling. But if I can do it at 60, I'm sure your daughter can!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 5:07PM
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musicteacher

Ilene, the popcorn is not that hard to remove, but is a nasty, sloppy job. You have to cover walls and floors with plastic, and it still escapes. Blobs of white gooey stuff everywhere. The next step for me was harder. Evidently for popcorn they don't have to really finish the wallboard so I had to put several coats of mud over the tape lines, nail holes, and even replace some of the tape. I bought a garden sprayer but it just squirted and dripped on the floor so I used a water spray bottle. I also tried that thing you attach to to a long pole, with a bag to catch the garbage. It was too hard for me to handle and I gouged the ceiling. But if I can do it at 60, I'm sure your daughter can!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 5:08PM
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gyr_falcon

:( We have popcorn ceilings everywhere, except the kitchen and guest bath. ick. It bugs me many times more than my husband, so I don't know if I will ever get him to go for the mess of removing it.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2014 at 10:12PM
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lascatx

We have knockdown on our ceilings, though it tends to be a lighter texture than what is on the walls. We had one bathroom that was heavier and not knocked down -- discovered that a previous owner used it to try to cover evidence of water damage. Finally figured that out and where the problem was when brown water came through the light fixture one night. Tore out the entire ceiling, did plumbing repairs and have no texture pending a full remodel. Will go smooth if possible -- very light knockdown if not. Never want any significant texture again. Marshmallow cream and popcorn do not belong on ceilings.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 12:00AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Smooth and flat...I'm not a fan of textured ceilings at all...and only of textured walls when stylistically appropriate like southwest design...

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 8:04AM
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Elraes Miller

Mine aren't textured, but look more like a medium nap roller being used lightly. You have to really look close to even see any texture at all. They are very easy to paint and show nothing when it comes to dirt, cobwebs, etc. Actually, I can't remember any cobwebs in this house. I'm not sure how they did this as the rooms are slightly coved from wall to ceiling. There is texture to my walls from yore. The transition was well done. All is easy to paint, even touch up compared to smooth walls/ceiling in my kitchen. The kitchen ceiling tends to show every small mistake and I hate painting it.

This brings up a question as to ceiling paint. I had never heard of it before, but am seeing it sold by every paint manuf. Is this new or I didn't pay attention in years past? What does it do compared to standard wall paint?

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 9:18AM
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alex9179

One comment on easy/hard to remove. Along with the mess, the formulation can differ from area to area.

In Missouri, the stuff came off in one pass and I could get a room done anywhere between a couple of hours to a day - depending on size. I've scraped a lot of ceilings.
In Texas, my experience was vastly different. It takes at least a couple of days because I can only chip away a little at a time. More glue for a humid area? I don't know, but it's horrible enough that I'm thinking of bead board or wood plank instead of scraping.

I also vote smooth. I don't care for texture on drywall.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 9:33AM
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jennyzone5

The attached shows what's on my ceiling, as well as I think every house I've ever been in around here.

Is this considered popcorn? If not, what's it called? Every time I watch HGTV and see someone complaining about popcorn ceilings, I wonder if that's what mine is.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 11:12AM
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Elraes Miller

Jenny, No you do not have popcorn ceilings. Most likely someone will post a pic of one. My guess is your house is around the late 40s, 50s. These were common textures then, unless someone decided to texture walls during a remodel. But there aren't a lot of finishers who even know how to do this well. I would embrace the era if this is original.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 12:24PM
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jennyzone5

LOL my house was built in 1999.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 12:38PM
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jennyzone5

Oh that's funny. My house was built in 1999.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 12:40PM
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sameboat

1980s ceiling here, and I hate it. I prefer a smooth ceiling. There's always a cobweb somewhere dangling down that I miss...usually detected during a holiday get-together when I have houseful of company!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 1:58PM
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Elraes Miller

How interesting Jenny. I don't see textured walls or ceilings like yours in houses here past the 50s. Must be a regional finish era. Sameboat, similar event. Are all of your rooms done like this?

Here is a link to popcorn ceilings.

Here is a link that might be useful: popcorn/cottage cheese

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 8:06AM
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jjam

Smooth! If at all possible. We had a variation of popcorn on our ceilings in our home in Atlanta built in the 80s. They called it a stippled ceiling. Never liked it much.

If you have a historical home or cool wood beams, etc., that's a different matter, but if you have a choice I would do smooth ceilings. They are timeless and will never look dated.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 8:16AM
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lascatx

Jenny, yours is a type of stomp texture. It would be applied with a tool that creates the pattern on the end of a stick. It is dipped into the mud and then stomped on the ceiling. Controlling the amount of mud on the pattern and keeping the mud at the right degree of wet to get a consistent texture would seem to be the main issues with doing it properly.

I think the ceiling texture we had when I was growing up was a variation on a stomp -- probably more a stomp and sweep. My dad called it elephant tracks.

The typical knock down is applied with a roller like technicolor's post suggests. When the nap is heavier, it leaves more mud behind and the heavier is let to sit for a few minutes to start to set and then a trowel run over the top to knock down the top surfaces. If the nap is finer, sometimes used on walls and probably what is done on a lot of ceilings, the knock down may not be needed since what is left behind is finer.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 10:16AM
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musicteacher

Jenny, my friend called your texture "crows feet". Picturesque, no? I bought ceiling paint. It is light weight and comes in a pink shade that turns white when it dries. It was actually quite helpful since I was painting over white primer.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 8:57PM
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