Tips on How to Plaster a Concrete Wall
Concrete walls aren’t exactly the most attractive of building projects, and if they’re going to be a part of your home you’ll want to change them up a bit – they’re almost unusable in their basic state as they’re uneven and don’t resist moisture all too well.
That’s why you’ve got to get plastering.
By applying plaster to your concrete walls you not only make them look a lot nicer, but you also add to their moisture resistance and make them more level, meaning you can paint them and hang pictures and the like.
However, if you want to do it right, you have to put the time in. You have to prepare the wall beforehand, but the most time-consuming part is waiting for the plaster to dry out between applications. If you don’t do the proper prep, the plaster will eventually crack and fall off the wall, undoing all that hard work.
Here’s how to go about it correctly.
What You’ll Need
Get hold of a sandblaster and a decent amount of caulk, as well as a wire brush and some mould killer. You’ll also need some Portland cement, a sack of masonry sand, some plaster (obviously) and a trowel to slap it all on with.
First of all, you’ll need to get on with all that prepping we mentioned earlier. If you’ve made your concrete wall a little prettier by slapping on a nice coat of paint, I’m afraid we’ve got some bad news for you – all that paint has to come off!
This is why you need that lovely sandblaster – it is by far the easiest way to get rid of the paint. If you’re lucky enough to have bare concrete walls, you won’t need it.
Caulk It Up
Grab the caulk and get to work filling in any cracks in the wall, no matter how small they might be. If there’s any mould or mildew present, thoroughly scrub the wall with the mould killer and then remove any stains which might be left behind.
All mortar joints should be well cleaned; use the wire brush for this little job.
Apply a slurry coat to your clean and dry concrete wall. If you’re worried about this, look into attending one of The DIY School’s plastering courses for DIY enthusiasts, or look online for some great tutorials.
Mix one part cement with two parts masonry sand. Add water to this until it gets runny, then use a brush to slap on 1/8” of slurry. Leave this for 24 hours.
Time to Plaster
Read the instructions on the plaster, and follow them to the letter to make your perfect plaster. Apply the plaster to about a quarter-inch thickness with the trowel, smoothing it out as you go. Let this dry overnight.
Once it’s dry you can put the second coat on – do exactly the same as before. Again, leave it to dry. As soon as it is, you have a beautifully plastered wall; congratulations!