Plaster a wall or fill and sand?

Plaster a wall or fill and sand?

One question that I often get asked
is whether or not a wall needs skimming with plaster or whether it can
be filled and sanded. This is not a simple question and there is no right or
wrong answer to this question without actually seeing the wall. However in this
video I’m going to fill and sand the wall that has some extensive damage. At least
four people have seen this wall when it was stripped and all four of them asked
if I was going to skim it with plaster. Sometimes applying a skim coat is the
best option but it can add a considerable time to a job due to the
time it takes the wall to dry before it can be painted. This is the wall which
has previously been plastered, the property is roughly 40 years old. This wall was covered with woodchip wallpaper which was hiding most of the
damage but there is also some new damage which was caused when we removed the woodchip. The first step is to ensure the wall is clean. To do this I’m using a large
sponge and some sugar soap solution. I’m also using a scraper to remove any
remains of the wallpaper. To start with I’m using a filling knife to fill the
gouges in the wall. This is the most time-consuming part of
the job. I’m using Gyproc Easi Fill which dries very quickly.
I should be able to fill and sand and paint the wall with a mist coat in just
one day. You can of course use whichever filler you prefer to fill the
damage but I prefer to use the Gyproc Easi Fill as it’s very easy to use and
dries very quickly. I’m using the knife to fill all of the damage so that
it is flush or slightly proud of the surface. If the filler is proud of the
surface it will soon be sanded flush at the next stage. You can see that there
is considerable damage to this wall but this will soon be fixed and will look
like a new wall in a few hours. I will speed this part up to prevent you
getting bored but filling the entire wall probably took about an hour. Here you can see some historical damage
that has being filled before the wall was papered. This was a very poor attempt
at filling the hole but I can soon cover it and then sand it flush. Now that the damage has been filled it’s
time to start sanding, so a good quality dust mask is essential. To do the
sanding I’m using a Mirka Deros which is attached to a vacuum cleaner.
This means that you can sand in a virtually dust free environment. If you don’t have a Mirka Deros you can use a sanding pole and sand paper. Once the wall has been sanded it is a
good idea to give it a wipe down with the sponge and some clean water to
remove any dust which can interfere with the adhesion of the paint. It’s now time
to mix some paint as I now need to apply a mist coat. A mist coat is just a
watered-down coat of non-vinyl emulsion paint. I’m mixing the super matte with
some cold clean water to the instructions on the paint can which I
think was 20%. The use of a drill and the mixer paddle will make this job much
easier. It’s now time to put the mist coat on the wall so I’m using a brush
to cut in at the edges and the small emulsion roller for the rest of the
wall. If the wall is large it’s much easier
and faster using a larger roller. Once the paint is applied at the edges I’m
using the roller to roll out the paint This is to ensure there are no visible
brush marks. Apply the paint evenly ensuring you get
good coverage on all of the wall. Once the mist coat has dried you can
then apply a top coat of paint. Hopefully this video will have proved that you do not always need to employ a plasterer to get a wall skimmed. A lot of the time
you can simply fill the damage, sand it and then paint it. This is the picture of
the wall once it was finished it really does look like a brand new wall. I hope you found this video useful. If you have please subscribe to the channel if
you have not done so already.

Comments (54)

  1. What sander did you use ?

  2. Good job as per usualπŸ‘πŸ‘ love the videos their enjoyable and there is always great tips, keep up the good videos and work :);)

  3. you look like you've lost loads weight pal

  4. Thanks Chez – this video also proves that to get a good finish i.e. free of brush marks you really need to use a roller when painting a large wall.

  5. that gyproc filler looks like butter! love it!

  6. Thumbs down? Must be a couple of plasterers missing out on covering everything in skim and powder dust!

  7. fantastic job and a great finish too.

  8. how are you chez haven't heard from you in a while you been busy?

  9. great video thanks πŸ‘

  10. that sander is what makes thet job, the old fashioned way meant a ton of dust that will creep around the house ( and your lungs in your old age) when you are not filiming, whats is your preferred entertainment to cover the boring filling?


  12. good job fella!!! also good to hear from you!!!πŸ‘Œ

  13. Fantastic video. I need to try the filler you used, I have used ready mixed poly filla once. What a nightmare! Honestly just made the job of preparing a wall 10x worse!

  14. Can't believe the weight you've lost. I had to pause the video as I didn't think it was you.

  15. What the heck is a sugar salt solution? Could you do a video?

  16. brilliant sanding machine how many pads did u use for that wall and what is the machine called very good finish

  17. You look like you have lost weight Tom or is it Cesare?
    I see you were featured in the Telegraph newspaper , well done man you deserve it!
    Didnt actually know you had the website either!

    I did a job recently but used that brown finishing plaster ; when we tried to paint it it mixed with the paint – i didnt realise you need what is known as a splash coat!
    Was a nightmare of a job i should just have used polyfilla – Gyproc easi-fill – i cant recommend Tetrion enough.
    Maybe an idea for another test of fillers – B&Q , Tetrion , Polyfilla, Gyproc etc?

    I am primarily a tiler and electronics engineer and I hate painting and plastering but went along to help a mate out.
    He is a painter and decorator but he hadnt a clue what to do with this wall!

    You did a much better job than we did but it was our first go!
    I wish I had seen this video first lol
    I think a rotary sander is best we only had a standard electric block sander and manual block sanders!

    How much do you reckon it would cost to strip , sand , plaster and paint a hall entrance area , kitchen and large lounge including all the Dado rails and surrounds?
    We did the whole lot for Β£1000 and we had to pay for the paint and the kit to do it so we ended up with Β£900 – I reckon we were robbed but my mate always charges so little its embarrassing sometimes. As a business advisor once told me "charge top whack that way the customer is assured they are getting the best job psychologically if you charge a small amount they will think you are fly by nighters" lol

  18. πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘

  19. Are you worried about lead dust during prep?

  20. Why didn't you use a wider filler knife?

  21. Pukka job ,as usual Chez. By the way, have you lost a bit of weight? hope you're ok.

  22. Perfect job πŸ™‚

  23. +Ultimate Handyman Your videos have been a tremendous help to me and no doubt other people. I am by no means a professional, but there are a few videos that have got me out of a difficult spot. If I may, I'd like to ask a quick question which is kind of related to this particular video.

    I have a wall in my lounge that used to have an electric fire installed on it many years ago. That fire was removed at some point before we bought the house and probably plastered over. It would seem that whoever did this job, made a really poor effort. The wall where the fire was installed has a slight concave to it and it's driving me insane. Someone recommended Smooth Over and I laughed at them right in their face. However, a friend of mine suggested using a finishing skim like Polycell Finishing Skim Filler to even it out. Would you agree that this is the way to go or would you recommend another option to rectify the slight concave?

    Many thanks for your time and your brilliant videos.

  24. Love all your very useful How to's. I have used easi-fill on several jobs with plasters towel and found it an excellent way to bring a wall back into a good condition for re-decoration with without the need for a skim coat. Love that sanding machine and keep the How to's coming. Thanks .

  25. Nice job of sorting the wall. You do not say what grit of sandpaper you used?

  26. I used the easi-fill on the wall, but when applied, dried and painted, it bubbled up causing a lot of hassle scraping it off again, and then re-work.

  27. Excellent job mate. Any similar tips for plasterboard walls? One in our house has had so many fixtures and fittings in and out it's beginning to look like a dartboard!

  28. I tried looking online for Gyproc easi-fill, but I could only find huge sand bag sort of things. I couldn't find a small container like the one you're holding.

  29. great video as always very insightful, I have a wall in the bathroom that I've had to scrap all the paint off, there are marks that will need plasters, what would you recommend to do after the wall has been filed and sanded as it's a bath room? love your channel has helped me to no end!

  30. Have you tried using a wide tapeing knife to fill, this would be my choice with that level of damage, Farr quicker than a small filling knife. You have converted me to a Mira Deros!

  31. if you fill the hole flush wont it shrink back a little?

  32. you should see the state of the walls in my stairwell, what a mess they are

  33. Nice job. I did similar in my house. Takes a while but saves a lot of cash.

  34. good job, is that gyproc filler waterproof? i made a mistake of wiping down spackle after sanding, and it wiped away most of the filler, so i had to fill again.

  35. Many thanks, very well presented video and great instructional value. thanks for taking the time to do it.

  36. GREAT Stuff as per

  37. superb as usual!… love a bit of simon mayo at 5pm ; )

  38. good god man treat yourself to a wider filling knife !

  39. Great video!!! .. looking at buying a Mirka Deros now.. our whole house has really mottled paintwork.. not quite as raised as woodchip paper but a poor paint/roller was obviously used. Would you skim that with easy fill our would the sander just take it all back with some patience?

  40. This video is brilliant! Thank you. Just a quick question. We are redecorating and removing wallpaper. The walls are perfectly even with no plaster coming off etc however the walls underneath was previously painted and the old paint has chipped off so it looks uneven… would you recommend sanding down the wall or skimming the walls completely? Thank you in advance. x

  41. Looks great. Why didn't you use a a 4 inch knife to fill the holes. That wee one would drive me nuts.

  42. Great stuf, thanks! Was a bit daunted by the prospect of re-plastering around my fireplace after replacing it, but after seeing this I’ll just fill/sand.

  43. Hello great video was wonder if you can help. My mom has had 4 rooms done. Some.skimmed and other taken back to brick and plastered. A few days later it smells quite rotten in the house. Is this normal and how long will it last b4 panting can be done? Thanks

  44. Great vids, learning lots on the latest refurb of my front room. Cheers. I have a Victorian house 1907 and have lived in it for 26 years. Decided to change the front bay window and the back. Plaster was cracking in many places and the plasterer said he will fix it with some "nets". I said that I think I will remove the plaster in all the places that it has cracked. I have found lose bricks, same under the windows. Nothing wrong with the windows but whoever fitted them maybe 27yrs ago did not bother fixing the bricks. Could see outside through the holes once the plaster was off. Fixed it all now. I will be watching the new window install. Frigging cowboys. Sockets wonky, holes and lose bricks covered with plaster. No wonder the plaster was cracking! Uplighter attached with flex plastered over and a plug at the end. On your advice got the Gyproc easy fill (and will do the straightened sockets with it as well as the channelled holes for the up lighter 1mm cable. Channelling incidentally broke my DeWalt 18v drill and I guess it's my fault for not reading that the 3yrs cover needs to be registered online to work. Thanks for your reply on your other vid. I have a an early bday present on it's way tomorrow. πŸ™‚ I hope your videos are earning you money! Great help for many people!

  45. was doing this for whole life and some plasterers gets angry about this technique :)) nice man ! fast, easy and amazing finish πŸ™‚

  46. If anyone is watching this and is shocked at the cost of a Deros, then a Festool ets125 which you can use with Mirka mesh sandpaper is a very good compromise. Please don't wreck your lungs with dust it's not worth it.

  47. I tend to skim the whole wall with 2 tight coats of easi fill then sand, you'll never miss a bit and it is actually quicker than looking for areas to fill and because you are putting on 2 tight coats there is minimal sanding. Then seal with a decent primer ready for the paint. I tend to sand with a drywall sander attached to a dust extractor. Easifill is perfect, don't use the light weight ready mixed jointing fillers they are very easily marked and you need to sand with something like 220/320 to avoid visible scratches. Most walls do not need plastered, for walls which previously had wallpaper, wash the walls and use a taping knife to scrape the paste off the walls into a bucket. Use something like Zinsser 123 or similar to prevent any remaining paste bleeding through the paint.

  48. Just the info I needed, thanks!

  49. Don't you find if you fill and sand an area it becomes flatter and less texture when compared to the older parts of the wall? Is there any way around this other than sanding the entire wall?

  50. Good job on a ruff wall

  51. Great video thanks. Out of interest. If you wanted to wallpaper instead of paint would you have done the exact same thing except for the last step and instead of painting after the mist coat, wallpaper instead, and then paint the wallpaper? Cheers

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