lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

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Wren
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Joined: Mon 28th Aug, 2006 10:43 pm

lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

Post by Wren » Wed 26th May, 2021 7:16 pm

Hi

Sorry to add another lime topic to the list....
We have an old lime plaster ceiling downstairs, on laths. Loads of imperfections and character, many layers of limewash etc. - beautiful, to my eyes anyway. The lime plaster is sound and we want to keep it as it is, just freshening up with limewash - first in white (to tidy it up), and then some final coats of coloured limewash.
The problem is a couple of areas of water staining - one is an area of grungy staining where a pipe has leaked in the past, and the other where there were high ground levels and that whole side of the room was damp (not helped by a leaking immersion heater and lots of boarding everywhere which we stripped out).
I am fairly convinced if we just try putting limewash over the area of staining then several coats later it will still be coming through...

If this was gypsum plaster and a different house, we would paint an impermeable stain stop over the area of staining and go in with emulsion. But I don't think limewash is going to sit very well on top of a layer of something which isn't lime based. Also putting something like Zinsser or shellac on a porous lime ceiling and then finding out it was the wrong thing to when I start to limewash isn't an experiment I really want to try.

I am wondering about taking a scraper and very gently scraping back the top layer(s) of limewash maybe even some of the top coat of fine plaster, and then going in with some lime plaster skim, and then heading into limewash.

Feltwell
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Joined: Sun 18th May, 2008 7:28 pm
Location: Shropshire, England

Re: lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

Post by Feltwell » Wed 26th May, 2021 9:15 pm

I'd speak to someone like Mike Wye or Ty Mawr Lime before you get the scraper out. I suspect your staining will be right though the plaster. This article could be of interest:-

https://www.lime.org.uk/community/limew ... rough.html

a twig
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Joined: Sun 6th Oct, 2013 10:18 pm

Re: lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

Post by a twig » Thu 27th May, 2021 7:44 am

In a similar situation I addressed my stains by mixing up a thicker than recommended lime wash, getting on for the texture of double cream and applying that so it ends up almost being a plaster skim!

The thickness can make it prone to cracking obviously so as it starts to dry keep some to hand and as cracks appear just keep filling them.

A couple of coats of lime wash over the top then no more problems for us! Depending on your colour scheme a lot of the darker Earthborn clay paints do quite a good job of covering stains

MatthewC
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Re: lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

Post by MatthewC » Fri 28th May, 2021 3:38 pm

You're sure the plaster is sound? I would have expected the dampness caused by the high ground would have loosened the plaster over a few years.

I had some yellow-ish staining on a wall from ong-term dampness and found that the stain did not show through a skim of fine lime plaster followed by limewash that contained yellow.

88v8
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Re: lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

Post by 88v8 » Sun 30th May, 2021 9:33 am

MatthewC wrote:
Fri 28th May, 2021 3:38 pm
I had some yellow-ish staining on a wall from ong-term dampness and found that the stain did not show through a skim of fine lime plaster followed by limewash that contained yellow.
That's a great solution.... just wash it in the colour of the stain :wink:

Ivor

Flyfisher
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Re: lime plaster ceiling, staining due to old water damage

Post by Flyfisher » Mon 31st May, 2021 11:05 am

We had a lime-plastered bedroom ceiling that was badly water-stained in one area due to a leaking roof (long fixed now).

The ceiling is divided into six large 'panels' by beams and the staining was present on only one panel.

I decided to paper over the affected 'panel' with a fairly thick lining paper and then painted it, and all the other panels, with a caesin distemper (probably Little Greene, though I can't remember exactly).

10+ years on and there has been no reappearance of the staining. :D

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