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 Post subject: Painting old walls
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 3:38 pm 
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Location: 32 Gers/SW London
Our house is stone built 250ish year old farmhouse that sits directly on clay (no foundations). The paint we have used is bog standard emulsion found in any bricolage and it will not stay stuck to the walls up to about 4ft in places. The other problem could be that the house is shut up for a lot of the year.

Any ideas or advice gratefully received.

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 Post subject: Re: Painting old walls
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 3:56 pm 
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Location: Was Plouasne 22830, now Ploeuc sur Lie 22150, France
Sounds like to be a rising damp problem

Is the ground outside the property higher than inside the property

What is the ground floor made of, a suspended timber floor or a solid floor

One way to loose/hide the dampness would be to erect a metal stud plasterboard wall or walls, with a minimum of 35 mm air gap between the original wall and the studs of the plasterboard wall, which is ventilated to either the outside or into the room top and bottom

Also I would try a fan left on low to circulate the air, when you are not there, and see if this helps

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 Post subject: Re: Painting old walls
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 4:32 pm 
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Location: somewhere in the "pays de dropt"
Like Peake said it seems like rising damp, you can treat it yourself by injecting a sealer into the wall (Brico Depot do a kit with the liquid plus six tubes/funnels)
Emulsion is the worst paint to put on old plaster which is more than likely a lime plaster, as it seals the damp in, which is why it comes of after a while, Best to paint it with a lime based paint, which lets the wall breathe, most diy shops have it in stock.

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 Post subject: Re: Painting old walls
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 5:00 pm 
Ours is just under two hundred years old and the walls have been treated but damp can still be a problem. We cured most parts of the house by concreting the floors and tiling. Making sure the concrete went well into the walls at floor level with a waterproof membrane underneath. Where we still have the original floors it is more difficult. On some walls we have taken off the plaster and lime mortared the joints which is lovely. On others we have used exterior masonry paint [from wickes] :-$ and that works brilliantly. Emulsion just flakes off the whole time.


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 Post subject: Re: Painting old walls
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 5:09 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 7:20 pm
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Location: 32 Gers/SW London
Thank Peake, solid stone floor on the ground, the ground outside the house slants slightly, so if you are looking at the front of the house then height between the ground and living room window sill is 88cm and the height between the ground and the kitchen window sill is 1m59, obviously the house doesn't slope! The walls downstairs, both external and internal are 60cm thick. We sit on clay. The strange thing is that we do not have any damp problem in the study, same paint used.

We have plaster boarded the living room but to do the hall would be difficult. The hall which is in the worst state has only internal walls except obviously for the wall the front door is on.

Papibryn, my sister who has a similar aged property went the sealer route at vast expense applied by a professional company - it is a vast house and it didn't work.

I think I'll try the lime based paint and see how that works.

Thank you both for your advice.

Just seen Blondie's reply - thank you.

Our floors are all concrete and tiles - done before we bought. I took off the plaster of one wall in the living room and was then advised I would need to wash down with acid to get rid of the yellow cow dung colour the stone was stained with, I'm afraid I opted for plasterboard!

Thanks for the paint advice, I think we'll try lime first and see how it goes from there.

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 Post subject: Re: Painting old walls
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 9:24 am 
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Location: somewhere in the "pays de dropt"
Which ever kind of paint you decide to use you have to solve the rising damp first. here's what I would do and have done in the past.
Take off skirting board, if the plaster goes down below the concrete floor cut it back by about 15 cms, it may be the only cause of the damp, acting like a sponge,
Leave for a while to see if the wall dries out, if it does your on a winner.
re-plaster the bit chipped out with a sharp sand mix with hydrofuse in the mix to stop the capillary action.

The firm which your sister used were professional? professional cowboys to my mind as a reputable firm guarantees their work.

If you read French here is a vg book on the use of La Chaux in building
part of the Savoir-faire series, called --
Restaurer,Décorer A La Chaux

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