Shocking discovery here. Our interior walls weren't primed before they were painted during construction. I'm guessing the contractor was cutting corners as this is not something readily evident unless you were observing the initial application of paint. I would imagine I'm not the first person this has happened to but I couldn't find any references in the past postings. I discovered this when I was repainting my daughter's room and the paint began to peel off in sheets. Like 2' x 2' sheets. The house was built 8 years ago and her room had been repainted once previously about 5 years ago. I removed a full length mirror that was attached to the wall and this lifted an area of paint that I was surprised to see come off very easily when I pulled it. A huge piece just peeled right off. Now for my dilemma. How do I treat these walls? I'm pretty sure my whole house is the same because I have gone throughout inspecting and checking for peeling paint. I have some small areas in my kitchen as well as both bathrooms. Should I remove the paint then prime correctly? Or could I prime over areas that aren't peeling and then apply paint? If I take the paint off I am afraid I will lose the wall texture that was applied underneath the first layer of paint. Shouldn't they have primed these walls or is that not standard practice in new construction? I want to do this correctly in an effort to avoid future problems. Thanks for any and all suggestions.
There's something else going on here. Just about all interior latex wall paints are self-priming. No harm in using a primer as opposed to en extra coat of the more expensive finish paint but not using a primer is not the cause of having such large sheets peel off.
I first guess would be that where they cut corners is that the walls were not cleaned after drywall - leaving a layer of drywall dust that prevented the paint from sticking. But, you mention something about a wall texture. What exactly do you have on there under the paint? Is the paint peeling off the texture or is the texture peeling off the walls?
Jaybee, I'm just guessing here but I think they may have used dry wall mud thinned out and sprayed on the walls to create a knock down type texture. It seems to have the same color and consistency as the mud used to tape the seams. Yes, it looks like most of the texture is coming off with the paint. There's little to no texture left on the drywall after the paint comes off. The paint seems to peel easiest where the drywall mud is covering the tape at the seams, coming off in long strips the same width as the mudded seam. And the texture is for the most part covering 95-97% of the surface underneath the paint. Very little drywall is showing through the texture. Could the dry wall mud/texture itself be causing the paint to peel? Could the mud have been faulty or just an unclean wall? Thanks for your help.
Yup, it sounds like the problem is the texture releasing from the wall and of course, taking the paint with it. It's common to use a thinned drywall mud as a wall texture (although I have to admit that I hate it). The thing is, if the mud is too thick then it doesn't dry very well and will chip off easily. Plus, if they did any sanding of the first couple of layers of mud over the tape and seams then there could be the same dust layer I mentioned in my post above. This would have the same result and would make the texture layer not stick to the wall.
It sounds like the texture is in every room?
If the texture has come off the walls in the bad area as well as paint, then you'll need to remove the texture from the entire wall before moving forward with any new paint of texture. It is just about impossible to match texture in just patch areas without making it look like a patch - you need to go from corner to corner of every wall.
On the good side - if it comes off that easily then it will not take much to clear it off the entire wall. It will make a huge mess though.
Tip: If you do go for a lot of scraping and you have carpet in the room, get some stick down clear carpet protector and cover 100% of the room.
That does sound like the problem and the solution. In the whole house
If you have a room that isn't being used, start there first. With the next room. "re-locate" everything into the room you just finished, if possible, and keep doing that until the house is finished. That way you're not really disrupting your way of life too much as you're doing a project that will be time consuming.
Sounds like a moisture problem to me.
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