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What Walls Can You Plaster Over? Surfaces Guide

Ever wondered if you can plaster over different types of walls? Whether it’s brick, concrete, or drywall, knowing what walls you can plaster over can save you time and effort on your next home improvement project. Understanding the compatibility of plaster with various surfaces is key to achieving a smooth and durable finish.

Key Takeaways

What Walls Can You Plaster Over? Surfaces Guide
What Walls Can You Plaster Over? Surfaces Guide
  • Identify Suitable Surfaces: You can plaster over various surfaces such as concrete, brick, blockwork, and plasterboard.

  • Proper Surface Preparation: Ensure surfaces are clean, dry, and free from loose materials before applying plaster to achieve a smooth finish.

  • Understand the Plastering Process: Familiarize yourself with the steps involved in plastering, including mixing plaster, applying it evenly, and finishing techniques.

  • Special Surfaces Require Care: Be cautious when plastering over surfaces like painted walls or tiles; additional preparation may be needed for successful plaster adhesion.

  • Address Common Concerns: Refer to the FAQs section for answers to common questions about plastering over different types of walls.

  • Practice Makes Perfect: Start with small projects to gain confidence and skill in plastering various surfaces effectively.

Surfaces You Can Plaster Over


To plaster over wallpaper, remove it first for a better finish. Cleaning and sanding the wallpaper are crucial preparation steps. Avoid direct plastering to prevent bonding issues.


When plastering over artex, consider the texture height for a smooth result. Be cautious of asbestos in artex and remove high points before applying plaster coats.


Before plastering over paint, assess its condition and remove old, flaking paint. Apply a base coat and allow proper drying time for painting or wallpapering.


For plastering over plasterboard, skim it for a smooth surface. Scrim joints and apply a base coat before adding two thin plaster coats with intervals for drying.


Avoid plastering directly over tiles due to bonding difficulties. If unable to remove tiles, use Blue Grit bonder as a bonding agent before plastering.


Secure plasterboard on crumbling brick walls before plastering. Apply a sand and cement render over brick or address challenges when plastering on brick surfaces.


Evaluate the wood’s condition before plastering and use appropriate primers for wood surfaces. Consider wood expansion and contraction during the plastering process.


Choose the right type of plaster for your project based on its requirements. Understand the differences between various types of plaster and follow manufacturer’s instructions for mixing and application.

Preparing Surfaces for Plastering


Before applying new plaster, it is crucial to clean the surface meticulously. Removing dust and debris enhances adhesion. Different surfaces may require specific cleaning agents.

Straightening Walls

To ensure a polished outcome, straighten walls before plastering. Address any uneven areas or imperfections to achieve a professional look. Utilize straight edges and levels for precision.

Repairing Damage

Prior to plastering, address any wall damage by filling cracks and holes with suitable materials. It’s essential to ensure that repaired areas are completely dry before proceeding with the plastering process.

Base Coat Application

For improved adhesion, apply a base coat using the appropriate tools for an even application. Allow the base coat to dry entirely before moving on to the next steps.

Plastering Process Explained

Multiple Coats

  • Apply multiple coats of plaster to achieve a smoother and more even finish on the walls.

  • Ensure that each coat is fully dry before proceeding to the next layer to prevent cracking.

  • Sand between coats to create a seamless and polished final result, enhancing the overall appearance.

Securing Plasterboard

  • Properly secure plasterboard to the walls before starting the plastering process to ensure a stable foundation.

  • Utilize appropriate fixings based on the type of wall you are working on for optimal results.

  • Regularly check for stability and make necessary adjustments to guarantee a solid base for plaster application.

Proper Drying

  • Allow sufficient drying time between each plaster coat to avoid issues like dampness or uneven surfaces.

  • Ensure that the room is well-ventilated to promote faster drying of the plaster.

  • Consider using fans or dehumidifiers to speed up the drying process, especially in humid environments or during colder seasons.

Special Considerations

Artex Safety

Prioritize safety when dealing with artex surfaces. Take precautions to prevent any harm or health risks associated with the material. Wear protective gear to shield yourself from potential exposure to hazardous substances.

Crumbling Brick Repair

Address any crumbling brick walls before proceeding with plastering. Consider reinforcing unstable brick surfaces to ensure structural integrity. For severe damage, it’s advisable to seek guidance from professionals.

Plaster Types

Understand the unique characteristics of various plaster types available in the market. When selecting plaster for your project, consider aspects like setting time and finish. Choose the most appropriate plaster based on your specific requirements.


Best Plaster Types

When choosing plaster types, consider factors like durability and finish for specific applications. Consult experts for recommendations.

Plaster types include gypsum, lime, and cement-based plasters. Each type offers unique benefits such as flexibility and strength.

  • Gypsum plaster is ideal for indoor walls due to its smooth finish.

  • Lime plaster is suitable for historical buildings as it allows walls to breathe.

  • Cement-based plaster provides excellent water resistance, making it ideal for external walls.

Drying Time

Follow recommended drying times between plaster coats to ensure a strong bond. Monitor humidity levels for optimal conditions.

Each layer of plaster needs ample time to dry before applying the next coat. Rushing the process can lead to cracks and poor adhesion.

  1. Allow at least 24 hours of drying time between coats.

  2. Use fans or dehumidifiers to regulate humidity levels during drying.

Preparing a Surface

Before plastering, it’s crucial to prepare the surface properly for a flawless finish. Address imperfections and damage beforehand.

Proper preparation includes cleaning the surface to remove dust and debris. Priming helps the plaster adhere better for long-lasting results.

Artex Concerns

When dealing with artex, be cautious of potential hazards associated with this textured coating. Take necessary precautions to protect yourself from harm.

Artex may contain asbestos in older buildings, posing health risks when disturbed during renovations. It’s essential to identify and handle artex safely.

  1. Wear protective gear such as masks and gloves when working with artex.

  2. Consider hiring professionals to test for asbestos and safely remove artex if needed.

Closing Thoughts

After learning about the surfaces you can plaster over, preparing them for plastering, understanding the plastering process, and considering special factors, you’re now equipped to tackle your plastering project confidently. Remember to follow the steps diligently and address any unique challenges that may arise. By doing so, you’ll ensure a smooth and successful plastering experience.

Now that you have a comprehensive understanding of plastering different surfaces, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and put your newfound knowledge into practice. Don’t hesitate to start your plastering project and remember that practice makes perfect. Good luck with your plastering endeavors!

Frequently Asked Questions

What surfaces can you plaster over?

Plastering can be done on various surfaces like brick, concrete, plasterboard, and even painted walls. Ensure the surface is clean, dry, and free of loose materials before plastering.

How do you prepare a wall for plastering?

Prepare the wall by cleaning it thoroughly to remove dust and dirt. Apply a suitable primer or bonding agent to improve adhesion. Repair any cracks or imperfections in the wall surface before starting the plastering process.

Can you plaster over wallpaper?

It’s not recommended to plaster directly over wallpaper as it may lead to issues with adhesion and durability. Remove the wallpaper completely before plastering for a smooth and long-lasting finish.

Is it necessary to wet the surface before plastering?

Yes, dampening the surface before applying plaster helps to prevent rapid suction of moisture from the plaster, allowing for better workability and adhesion. However, ensure the surface is not overly wet to avoid compromising the plaster’s quality.

How long does it take for plaster to dry?

The drying time for plaster varies based on factors like humidity, temperature, and thickness of the application. Generally, plaster can take anywhere from 2 to 7 days to dry completely. Ensure proper ventilation for efficient drying.

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