How to remove plaster from different types of walls

How to remove plaster from different types of walls

Are you planning to remodel your old house?

If yes, the first thing you need to do is remove the old and damaged plaster from the walls.

When it comes to home renovation or remodeling, people simply repaint the old walls. However, if you want the paint to last longer, you need to remove the old plaster first.

Before drywall came into the picture, most of the houses were made of plaster walls. Plaster is nothing but wet paste or a mixture of gypsum, sand, and water. It is applied to the walls to give it an outer covering and make it smooth and sturdy.

The walls in most of the old houses and buildings are covered in plaster. With time and wear and tear, plaster deteriorates, causing the walls to become uneven, ugly, and weak.

Simply covering the old plaster is not enough. In order to fix the wall, you need to remove the old plaster first and install new drywall or any other type of wall covering.

How to remove plaster from walls?

The plaster removal process is quite easy. If you don’t want to hire a professional painter, you can simply do it yourself. However, the plaster removal steps differ as per the type of walls.

So before you actually start scraping the old plaster from the walls, you need to check the wall type. After that, you need to use the appropriate tools and techniques to remove them.

As this entire process can be quite messy, you need to take precautions to avoid damage. Before you start the plaster removal process, you need to cover the floor. Apart from that, you also need to wear a mask and gloves for safety.

You can also use electric tools for removing plaster from brick and concrete

Plaster removal tool list:

You cannot remove old plaster from the walls with your bare hands. You need to use plaster removal tools to remove it. Here is a list of all the tools you will need.

  • Hammer (or hammer drill with chisel bit)
  • Paint Scraper
  • Cloth
  • Hydrochloric Solution
  • Chisel
  • Wire Brush
  • Drywall Knife
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Muriatic Acid
  • Wide Tape
  • Gloves
  • Mask

How to remove plaster from concrete walls?

Plaster is the most common type of wall covering for concrete walls. It makes the concrete walls smooth and durable. When you apply the wet plaster on concrete walls, it dries and becomes very strong. So in order to remove the old plaster, you need to scrape a lot and dissolve the leftover plaster with acid. If you want to remove plaster from concrete walls, follow this step-by-step process.

Step 1: Prepare the area and take safety measures

Removing plaster can lead to lots of dust and debris. So you need to prepare the area first. You need to remove all the furniture from the room and cover the floor with plastic wrap or newspaper. Apart from that, you need to use gloves and a mask for safety.

Step 2: Break the plaster and scrape

After preparing the area, you need to start removing the plaster. To start the process, you need to use a hammer and break the plaster on the walls. When cracks will appear in the wall, use a paint scraper to scrape away all the cracked and removable plaster.

If you own hammer drill and chisel bit for it, you can use those as well. It will make the job easier.

Step 3: Use muriatic acid to remove leftover plaster

In order to remove the leftover plaster from the walls, you need to dampen a cloth with muriatic acid and place it on the stuck plaster. After that, you need to put a plastic wrap to cover the cloth on the wall. Stick it with tape and let it rest for a day. The plaster will soak the acid and become loose or get dissolved.

Step 4: Remove leftover plaster

After a day, you need to remove the plastic wrap from the wall along with the cloth. By now, most of the plaster might have dissolved. You need to use a paint scraper to loosen the remove the plaster from the walls.

How to remove plaster from drywall?

Plaster is also applied on drywall to make the walls strong and smoother. However, removing plaster from drywall can be pretty time-consuming. Most of the time, while removing the plaster, you have to tear the drywall paper. If you want to remove old plaster from drywall, follow these steps.

Step 1: Scrape off plaster

The first thing you need to do is scraping off the old removable plaster from the drywall. You need to use a drywall knife to do it.

Step 2: Use utility knife to remove leftover plaster

You need to remove the leftover plaster from the drywall using a utility knife. All you need to do is insert the pointy side into the edge of the plaster and remove it.

Step 3: Cut loose drywall paper

All the scraping might damage the drywall paper, so you need to cut the hanging pieces with a utility knife.

Step 4: Fix the drywall

After that, you need to fix the damaged drywall paper by applying a drywall primer and joint compound.

How to remove plaster from brick wall?

It is the most common type of wall in old homes. If you have brick walls in your house and want to restore them, you need to remove the plaster first. With time, brick walls become weak because of old plaster. You need to remove the old plaster and apply a new coat to make it strong again. Follow these steps to remove plaster from brick walls.

Step 1: Chip off removable plaster

The first thing you need to do is chip off all the old and weak plaster from the wall. You can use a hammer to crack the plaster and a chisel to chip it off.

If you use hammer drill here, be careful not to break the bricks.

Step 2: Use hydrochloric solution

In order to remove the small stuck pieces of plaster, you need to use a hydrochloric solution. Apply the solution to the plaster with the help of a cloth. After that, you need to use a wire brush to scrub it off.

Step 3: Fix the damaged wall

After you remove all the plaster, you need to fix the damaged brick wall by patching it up with mortar.

Conclusion

These are the simple steps you need to follow to remove plaster from old walls in your home. After removing the plaster, you need to fix the wall, cover it and paint it to beautify the wall.

This guide was also planned so that you can do it without power tools. If you own a hammer drill with wide chisel bit, you can use it to remove the plaster from concrete and bricks. For drywall I don’t recommend that.

Also, here is a guide on removing old plaster walls that are attached to wood lathe. If you want to try something new, check out this guide about Venetian plastering.

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