Interior PaintingPeeling Paint & Why It Peels

What Causes Peeling Paint or Flaking Ceiling?

Peeling paint or flaking ceiling paint is generally a sign of an unprimed surface. When it comes to painting your apartment’s interior, people usually encounter problems when trying to paint over the ceiling. If this specific issue is a constant problem and it appears every time when you are trying to repaint your home, then it means that you have a “Peeling & flaking ceiling ”.

A peeling paint problem implies that there is a constant possibility that the paint on your ceiling might peel off or become blistered. In some cases, this happens slowly over time, but in some cases, it could happen very quickly. This issue could be the result of your ceiling’s shape overall, or it can be caused by previous layers of pain which were applied badly.

Although we approach every issue as professional painters and try to work with any ceiling no matter the shape, we cannot be responsible for previous layers in case flakes or peels become visible. However, we can preemptively recognize a peeling paint issues to avoid making further damage. Here are the indicators of a ceiling which has peeling paint or flaking ceiling problems.

The Ceiling Was Painted With Calcimine Paint

In the past, fibrous plaster ceilings have been usually painted over with calcimine paint and this paint had a powder form which was mixed with water and, by stirring, it would become a paint ready to be applied on the ceiling. After it was applied, it took time for it to dry off and, once it did, a layer of pigment powder would appear over the entire ceiling.

At some point, the owners switched to plastic paint and recoated that same ceiling. However, the remaining powder and pigment will disrupt the binders in the new paint and make it highly unstable. This might not cause the paint to flake instantly, but after a couple of layers of paint, and with added pressure, the surface will evolve into a full blown Peeling & flaking ceiling .

Wrong Application Used In The Past

During the 1980s, the majority of homes built in Australia were constructed with gyprock. The problem is that people back then didn’t know a lot about materials and almost everyone used wrong applications for paints. In most cases, painters directly applied flat paint onto the gyprock without any preparation substance.

This means that this paint wouldn’t soke into the gyprock surface as primers always do. Applying more layers over the years with the same materials and methodology used means that no paint would have soaked in, creating an unstable surface with more and more pressure. At some point, the surface simply weakens due to gravity and this is when flakes and peels start appearing.

Too Much Moisture

Peeling paint & flaking paint on ceilings are most commonly caused by excessive moisture and, given the climate in Australia, it’s not uncommon to have moisture in your home. Moisture is caused by several different reasons. In case of a storm, even when there is no visible leakage, moisture can cause the coating from the ceiling to separate, causing blisters or peeling on the paint.

Some homes simply aren’t built well and create moisture in wet rooms such as laundry, bathroom, or kitchen. A bathroom could have a lot of moisture because the house doesn’t have adequate ventilation for the steam to go out and this constant process can easily peel and flake the paint.

Apart from the fact that homeowners need to do everything they can to reduce the amount of moisture in their homes, they can also paint these high-humidity areas with high sheen level paints that absorb less water and save ceilings from damages.

How The Home Was Built

Queenslander architecture style homes usually have ceilings out of VJ timber. On these kinds of ceilings, flaking is usually caused by a reaction between an old enamel paint and newly applied acrylic paint. The coating of enamel is very rigid and acrylic paints are very flexible and this is what causes the problem.

As time passes, these differences between the paints react differently in various temperatures. Simply put, they go against each other causing the top layer to be ruined. In order to avoid this problem, it is necessary to remove the acrylic coating and apply the general undercoat to make the surface stable enough to be recoated.

Final Thoughts

These are the most common causes for a Peeling & flaking ceiling . When this kind of problem is recognized, special steps are required to fix the issue and it requires more time and work. Still, making different preparations alone will not guarantee that the ceiling will be fixed as it’s only possible to make the paint last longer before getting peeled or flaked.

If you have determined a Peeling & flaking ceiling , the only way that you can really get rid of the problem is to replace it. Painting over it will not give you a long-term solution and, sooner or later, it will get damaged again.