Our kitchen ceiling has several cracks in the plaster. We need to repaint the ceilings and didn't know what our best option was for the cracks. We don't want to do some sort of plaster because we figure we won't be able to get the matching texture of the ceiling and it would be very obvious. We were thinking using good ceiling paint that the cracks would be concealed. Is this a correct assumption or no?

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  • Paint may or may not seal the crack. You could try spackle, finger painted to the crack only. The crack will probably always be noticable one way or another. – Jeff Cates Feb 23 '17 at 8:06

I encountered this in my first property, which due to the age of the building would have cracks in many walls and ceilings.

In my experience paint does not do the job. Perhaps if you slapped a lot of thick, gloss on top of them you could "fill" them, but I don't believe standard interior matte paint will reduce visibility of the crack.

In an ideal world, you would tape over them and use some sort of jointing/finishing compound to cover the area approx 5cm either side of the crack along it's length. A bit of sanding and paint and you're sorted.

However, with your ceiling this is either going to be impossible, or look very obvious after the fact.

Advice you don't want, but will definitely fix it: re-plaster the whole ceiling

Cheaper, but might not work: run some caulk (with the smallest nozzle possible) down the crack and smooth in with your finger. Wipe away the excess and let it dry. Paint over. It may not be perfect, but it has the potential to work in the long-term as the caulking is more flexible and will allow for a little movement.

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    Rather than "smoothing" it, rub it off with a rag, so that just the crack is filled and the natural texture of the ceiling isn't obscured. – isherwood Feb 23 '17 at 17:44

So lucky for you this is very common and easy to fix :)

  1. Do you live in a cool or warm climate area? The answer will be slightly different depending on the climate you are located in.

If: you are located in a warm climate then you can start fixing right away.

If: you are located in a cool climate area wait until spring passes to let the cracks get worse or new ones to appear because of the temperature change.

This will just save you a bit of work for future.

  1. Buy a metal scraper from the dollar store scrape of the paint/texture LIGHTLY.
  2. Using fine sandpaper smooth out the area.
  3. Don't scrape everything off just 2-3 inches away from the crack in all directions.
  4. Get CGC20 and if the crack is bigger than 1/8 get some drywall mesh tape as well.

  5. Stick the mesh tape on the crack, and put a coat of CGC on it.. smooth it out like you would doing any other taping.

  6. Wait 24 hours, take a drywall sponge/sander and smooth out the compound.
  7. Depending on severity you may have to repeat the process again.
  8. If it looks ok and you want to smooth out more, use cgc20 for finishing coat.

  9. To duplicate the current paint texture, go to your local paint store and get a textured brush and some thick paint, show them the picture you posted they will give you the right type.

  10. Duplicate the pattern with the paint, it should be pretty easy, make sure to get a small roller to do it with.. it will save your shoulders.

P.S if anything is unclear let me know i will put some more info. I've had to do worse in the past lol..

Product List:
1. CGC20
2. CGC45
3. Drywall Sanding Sponge 4. Small Drywall knife

P.S get the smaller pre mixed packages of compound. And you don't NEED to re-plaster you whole ceiling it is probably fine, that would just be a waste of money and time.

  • Thanks for the suggestions. The cracks are very small. I wasn't able to slide a piece of paper into any of them. It seems like using compound may be an overkill, especially if the cracks are going to reappear. With ceiling paint being thicker, I would think that the cracks would become less noticeable with the ceiling being repainted. Is this bad logic? – junta Feb 28 '17 at 14:25

you don't need to slide paper into the cracks, the mesh tape goes on top and then when you are sanding you really gotta sand hard to basically make it flush with the ceiling.

The mesh tape will just stop gravity from pulling the compound out of the crack while its drying.

If you think compound is an overkill use CGC 20 i think its in the green bag its a very light mixture that's easy to sand.

If you want to try an interesting way, you can buy Alex Plus caulking and cut the nozzle on a 30 degree angle so that you have a 1/8 hole. When you are applying the caulking hold the gun on the same angle the nozzle is cut and apply a VERY thin layer of caulking. Smooth it out with your finger and then apply the paint over it. The caulking is more elastic so if your ceiling moves an 1/8 here or there it should be able to expand better than compound. And then apply the paint over top. :)

Last time i posted as guest "Mike"



With just painting the crack will reappear sooner or later. Scrape the texture around the crack apply drywall tape, mud it, re-texture and paint is the most common thing to do, also clean cracks just a bit and apply a bit of a latex caulk wipe with wet sponge and paint.


We have plaster ceilings, and walls. For us the cracks turned into bubbles, the bubbles grew and grew, peeled, cracked. We had professional painters come in. They scraped, and scraped, then fixed and sealed before painting. We have this happen every 4-5 years. We like live in extreme hot and cold weather. I think that’s the nature of the beast (plaster)

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