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plaster and lath ceiling

Discussion in 'Plastering and Rendering' started by rob7475, 29 Sep 2009.

  1. rob7475

    rob7475

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    Hi,

    A house i have bought has plaster and lath ceilings throughout.

    A surveyor has pointed out that these types of ceiling can fall at any time! Is this true?

    I am thinking of just plasterboarding over the ceilings - can i just screw the boards into the lath or do i need to find the joists? If i need to find joists, whats the best way of finding them through the lath?

    Thanks,

    Rob
     
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  3. joe-90

    joe-90

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    It hasn't fallen down in the past 100 years so why panic now?
     
  4. rob7475

    rob7475

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    TBH that's my thoughts. The house was built in 1930 so it's been ok for 80 years. does this stuff really start to fall when it's been up so long?
     
  5. joe-90

    joe-90

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    Press it with your hand. If it feels like there's movement then it may be failing. If not then it's still OK. There are literally millions of these ceilings out there.
     
  6. gregers

    gregers

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    jump up and down really hard on the floor above if it dont come down then it aint worth worrying about. :LOL:
     
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  8. morrik27

    morrik27

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    I would agree with previous posts, if it's not gone any where up till now - leave it!

    If small areas of the ceilings do move when you push up on it, there are a couple of things you can do before changing the whole lot:
    1. for smal areas you can drill counterbored holes into the plaster, then using screws and large penny washers screw up into the joists (where possible, or even into the laths. you'll feel when you find wood, and it'll be obvious when you've missed the wood. remember the plaster is likely to be about an inch in thickness.
    2. if you can get to it from above, pulling floorboards, or in the loft. You can screw builders band (search for this on screwfix.com) across the joists where it's loose, then drill down and counterbore the hole from below. then usin long machine screws (75mm is long enough), washers and wing nuts tighten it all up. Better still pour plaster of paris around the area from above. this will get in between the laths and cover the nibs from above, strengthening it all up.

    If you do have a major failing, take the whole lot down before reboarding. it'll make a massive mess, but you'll find all the joists. now's the time to move any lights if you need/want to.
     
  9. Micilin

    Micilin

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    Did he happen to know someone who could help by any chance?

    He wasn't from Chicken Licken Surveyors , was he?

    Don't panic.
     
  10. juneja

    juneja

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    Hi,
    It's the surveyor's job to advise of potential faults and defects, key word being 'potential'.
    He's just covering his back in case it does fall down in the future.
    It's standard practice for surveyors to do that, don't worry about it unless the ceiling appears vulnerable, as previous posters have suggested.
    Cheers :)
     
  11. rob7475

    rob7475

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    thanks for all the advice.

    going to have enough work to do in the house, so if i can get away with leaving the ceilings, i will :D

    cheers


    rob
     
  12. DIYnot Local

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