Repairing a hole in ceiling made of Artex – any options?

11 Mar 2006
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United Kingdom
Hi all,

There is a whole in my bedroom ceiling caused by a leakage through a flat roof. The roof itself has been completely renovated since then. The ceiling is made of Artex and the same material has been used in all other rooms.

I’ve heard that Artex applied prior to mid 70s may contain asbestos. The house was built 1970 and I assume that the ceiling is original. Should I be worried? :confused:

I have so far received two quotes for repairing the ceiling, which range from £200 to £600. The cheaper quote is for stripping off the whole ceiling and re-artexing it, and is from a builder who did a great job laying my wooden floor. This doesn’t mean however that his skills extend to repairing ceilings to the same standard, does it? The second quote (£600) is from a specialist company for repairing only the damaged part of the ceiling and re-artexing the entire ceiling. For stripping off the whole ceiling I was quoted by them over £1000. Can it really cost that much?!

What other alternatives than Artex – more modern, safer and preferably cheaper – are there for ceiling materials? Insurance company is not paying for this, so it’s out of my own pocket.

What precautions need to be taken when removing the old Artex surface?

Many thanks in advance :)

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this is a hard one but here goes ...

It all depends if there is asbestos , you are correct mid 70s there was loads of asbestos materials used ...

you need a answer wether it is ...any reputable builder can tell you wether it is or not ,

if yes then you need it expertly removed as the dust is deadly as you know ...

if not ,
then it all depends wether it is a big hole ,
1ft by 1ft or half the room ,
if big get it pulled down an reboarded with plaster board an plaster skimmed ..
give more info wether asbestos , measurements an prices of quotes .. so we can judge if they are looking at you as a ATM !
hope this helps :)
I've got some Artex in my house, don't like it, apart from the wedding cake surface, It's quite thin and I can see where some of the joins are. If I were you I'd have it ripped off and new plasterboard and skim, and maybe a slight cornice if you like that sort of thing.

You want a proper plasterer, though, they're very fast and give the best surface (if they're any good), no way of telling how good a general builder is, and you could be looking at it for a long time. If you have anuy chance of a recommendation by a friend an neighbour, or a worker in another building trade, that would be best.

How big is the room?

with respect ,:)

asbestos has been mentioned ...

a plasterer would not look at the job ..

you can tell by artex inner strands wether asbestos ... totally major job ..
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Moz said:

with respect ,:)

asbestos has been mentioned ...

a plasterer would not look at the job ..

you can tell by artex inner strands wether asbestos ... totally major job ..

They (plasterers) skim over it round here. Or reboard over old ceiling saves disturbing asbestos, coff coff
cause i'd never dooo thaaat :p

ps;;;; though, dont know what size the ole is yet do we :LOL:
JohnD said:
How can i tell if mine is asbestos?

I honestly dont know john. But seems these asbestos techies take a sample and send it away to be tested. If you buy up to 70's property round here the surveyors normally insist on having the artex tested.
I think after 1970 your probably safe.
Thanks for you replies! :)

The artexed ceiling is area 220 cm x 310 cm, i.e. 6.82 square meters (or 73.41 square ft, if you prefer imperial).

The leakage was on the longer side of the ceiling and a patch of 80 cm x 180 cm would cover is easily, so there isn’t really need to redo the whole ceiling.

It looks like I first need to find out whether the artex contains asbestos or not as this limits my options. One website that I found on this subject stated that if there is asbestos in artex, under no circumstances is drilling or cutting boards or sanding artex recommended, but it should be removed with a wet artex remover. Does this mean replacing the whole ceiling then?

The only reason why I’d like to keep artex there is so that it matches with what is in other rooms. Are there any other ceiling materials that could be used instead of artex?

It is not easy trying to find someone to give me a quote on this job. Good people are difficult to get hold of…!

Forgot to mention that the actual whole is about 50 cm long and 15 cm wide at its widest. It is about 30 cm from the side.

For redoing the whole ceiling I was quoted over £1000…!

MissDIY said:
Forgot to mention that the actual whole is about 50 cm long and 15 cm wide at its widest. It is about 30 cm from the side.

For redoing the whole ceiling I was quoted over £1000…!


I recently patched a ceiling (water damage) approx 1mtr2, was able to successfuly blend the new artex into surround. then repaint whole ceiling. this was £580. I dont plaster normally but customer knows and trusts me so so asked/begged me to do it lol. Think if your pleased with your builder let him do it.
Re artex question. did you buy house in last ten yrs? if so surveyor should have warned/ tested. If not then all might be ok but I'm only a decorator soo...
Thanks for your reply. :)

I bought the property three years ago. Had a look at the survey report and there’s nothing mentioned about the ceiling material potentially containing asbestos. They just mention that the ceiling is made of plasterboards.

I think I’ll phone this first guy who quoted £600 and ask him if he thinks that it may contain asbestos… May also check with the local council if they will do a free survey, but most likely they'll say that I'd have to pay for it myself...

The builder who did my floor, not sure if I can trust him on this one, as he seemed too keen to get the job… He would have done the whole ceiling for £200…! If he’s so sure of this skills (builder, carpenter, floor layer, plasterer etc.) surely he’s selling himself too cheap?! :?:
there is a way you can guess if its asbestos in the artex by looking at it but as I dont want anyones death on my conscience if they get it wrong so I will not mention it here ...:)

get quotes off a few builders plasterers an they should tell you wether they think its asbestos ..

most survey reports will not pick up on it ..

your council should send a Building control officer to check it out for you too, most dont charge ...

if not asbestos get a spot repair done on it ..
Moz said:
most survey reports will not pick up on it ..


Hmm interesting that moz m8. Several jobs I did in last 2 yrs where people had just moved in, had a section in their reports about asbestos. Actually this place i bought in 2004 had a warning on asbestos soffit. This is down in darkest Dorset though, so what goes on round your way might be diff ?

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