Can you Paint Plasterboard?

People install plasterboard for a variety of reasons. The boards offer additional protection to the wall, create barriers between rooms, are cheap, lower noise pollution, etc. Many people have a question about whether or not they can paint their plasterboard.

Well, indeed, you can. You can paint the plaster wall with your favourite colour and have it look great. But like any house renovation work, you need to plan for it. This article explains the things you need to consider before you paint your plasterboard.


Is it Advised to Paint Plasterboard?

You can paint plasterboard just like you’d paint drywall or sheetrock. It’s highly recommended that you do apply a layer of paint on the board.

Before the coating, the plasterboard is composed of two surfaces, each with different porosity. When you apply the paint, you unify the body and make it a single surface. It provides a better, smoother finish to the surface.

Then you can personalize the space make it more appealing for occupants. The paint also increases the longevity of the plaster. It can prevent moisture, dust, and dirt from affecting the plaster wall.

If your house has old plasterboard beneath the wallpapers, then you should have it painted too. It will enhance the look and feel of the plaster that’s been untouched for so many years.


How to Prepare for Painting Plaster Wall?

You can’t start painting your plaster wall right away.

To paint your plaster wall, you need to spend some time preparing for it. If this is your first time painting plaster, then expect more tasks than painting a standard wall.

You’d need the following things at your disposal:

  • Prime for emulsion
  • Water
  • Dust sheet
  • Masking tape
  • Topcoat paint of your choice
  • Paintbrush and roller

Depending on the task at hand, you may need more items.


How to Paint Plasterboard?

Before you start painting, you need to ensure that it’s dust-free and moisture-free. A wet plaster will cause adhesion complications when you put on the topcoat.

Your first task would be to seal the plaster. And that’s where emulsion or prime comes in. You can take a cheaper emulsion paint, dilute it with water, and apply a coat throughout the board.

The primer will ensure the plaster wall has enough moisture content to stick to the paint coat. But too much moisture would mean it’ll peel off the plaster surface. Primers are water-based, and they come with the appropriate amount of water mixed in them.

When selecting the primer’s colour, you should match it with the topcoat, but it’s not necessary. You can apply the primer with a paintbrush or a roller, whichever is your preference.

It would be best if you chose a particular motion to cover the entire plasterboard. So if you’re working in an upward movement, stick to it. Avoid converges as much as possible. Otherwise, It may create an uneven surface.

Once you’ve applied the emulsion coat, you should let it dry for a few hours, ideally 12-24 hours.

The final step is to apply the topcoat. You can start as soon as the mist coat dries up. You can begin using the top coat of your choice after 12-24 hours. You don’t need to sand down the wall that you generally do before painting up a wall. A light brushing will remove the dust if any.

We recommend that you apply the paint with a roller in a V motion. It would offer even coverage throughout the board. For the best possible results, use multiple coats layers, but only after the first layer has dried up.

Painting Older Plasterboard

If it’s the old plasterboard that you’ll be painting, then there are a few other things to check.

The first thing to check for is if it already has a painted cover on it. Homeowners often like to paint the plasterboard before they apply the wallpapers. If that’s the case, you need to remove the old paint with a paint scraper and sandpaper.

If the colour is relatively intact, then you may have to employ chemical strippers.

But before you move forward, it’s essential to wear eye protection and a respirator. Old buildings and plasterboard have lead in them. When exposed, information can create breathing complications.

Once you’ve removed the paint layer with scrapper and sandpaper, you’ll have to check for any cracks or damages. If there are cracks, then these can expand into more significant cracks. So it’s better to repair them before you apply a new paint layer.

You can use paintable caulk for filling smaller cracks. Since the caulks are flexible, they can prevent the damages from reappearing. For more significant cracks, you need to patch them with plaster.

In either case, the aim is to create an even surface to which you can apply the paint. So once you’ve patched up the plasterboard, smooth the surface with high grit sandpapers.

The rest of the process remains the same for the old plasterboard.


Which Type of Paint to Use for Plasterboard?

There isn’t any particular type of paint that’s better or worse for plasterboard. You can use any paint type for painting the plaster.

But one type you should stay away from is all-in-one paint and primer. As per the claims on the label, they have primer and paint mixed in one. Since you already have primed your plaster, there isn’t any need for this.

Even worse, they can complicate the plaster and add more moisture content. It would cause the topcoat to shed faster than average. Always use a primer and then any paint of your choice.


To Sum up


You can undertake painting plasterboard as a solo activity or part of a restoration project. So answering your question of if you can paint the plasterboard, you certainly can paint your plaster.

Just keep the point discussed above in mind for the best results. Once done, your plaster wall will offer the same gloss or semi-gloss finish as your regular wall.

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