Peeling / flaking / bubbling paint

3 Aug 2012
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United Kingdom
Hello everybody,

About 24 months ago, I had a room emulsioned. Previously, the room had been wall-papered. Although, the finish was satisfactory, last winter, the paint started to bubble and peel is one or two small areas (all of this happening on interior walls). The plaster underneath seems "healthy" (hard and dry - no sign of crumbling).

In an attempt to remedy the peeling, I sanded down and applied a little filler in a thin layer in order to smooth the wall again. Once dry, I painted over the areas where the peeling had taken place.

Within three or four days, the filler (or the paint - hard to tell exactly which) had started to bubble and peel again. Only the "remedied" areas. The rest of the wall is still OK.

The plaster underneath dates back to the 1940s and seems sandy when raked out.

Has anybody any suggestions on how this problem could be fixed?

Thanks for any advice.
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First thing that springs to mind is paster residue. Filler because it has moisture content will liven the paste back up again and will also adhere poorly. Also the fact that it bubbled and peeled in the winter probably because of damp cold air makes me think paste as well. It could also be distemper but i'd expect problems all over the wall, either way the best thing to do is seal the wall with zinsser gardz after some sanding prep. Fill after the gardz, rub down, spot prime and top coat
Hi again,
The plaster is pinkish (but not as pink as usual) and very sandy (almost like mortar.
Any ideas?
Otherwise Dcdec, thanks for your suggestion. I'm a bit curious as to why such an old wall would still need sealing.
Many thanks,
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