Featured Ceilings Article
Bad Ceiling Decisions From The Past Haunt Today's Homeowners
Sometimes, the decisions of earlier generations can have a very direct effect on the way we live our lives. That's true in terms of a variety of bigger issues, but it's also a reality in the world of home improvement and remodeling. Occasionally, we'll encounter old work that makes us scratch our heads, wondering what those people were thinking, right before we sigh and prepare ourselves for a massive project to correct the "sins of the father".
Here are two perfect examples of this phenomena, pulled from the single area of ceiling repair. They illustrate exactly why the fact that "the don't build 'em like they used to" isn't always a bad thing.
Nails over screws
It makes sense. If you're going to put up a drywall ceiling, gravity is going to try to yank it down. If you're going to top the drywall with gobs of textured mud to create a ceiling surface, gravity will yank that much harder. Eventually, the drywall will sag and look horrible if you don't mount it correctly.
Most of us would recognize that. We'd act accordingly. We'd put up the drywall with screws. We'd put enough screws in, too. That would help keep sagging to a minimum. That's not the way they did it as early as thirty years ago, though.
Instead of using screws, they just nailed the stuff right up. Oh, and instead of putting those nails fairly close together, they went with twelve inch centers.
This isn't a problem with homes built or remodeled by lazy people with no understanding of basic physics. For some reason, it seems to common in many different homes. It was a sign of the times--a sagging sign.
For awhile, it seemed like every ceiling in the USA was of the popcorn variety. You know the look - sort of a lumpy textured appearance. Some people will tell you it looks more like cottage cheese than popcorn. No matter what it looks like, it sure isn't appetizing. Today, those ceilings are widely regarded as eyesores.
So, what gives? Why was everyone spraying the popcorn when it's so darn unattractive? Well, the main reason is because you could put up a popcorn ceiling quickly. And because the spray-on texture would cover flaws in the construction of the roof. To make matters worse, much of that texturing contained what is now a known carcinogen--asbestos.
Today, people are doing everything they can to rid themselves of popcorn ceilings.
The sloppy use of nails instead of screws and the decision to use popcorn ceilings are just two examples of how past methods of home construction and remodeling can haunt current homeowners. Repairing a sagging ceiling can be a real challenge and getting rid of popcorn is never a treat.
Hopefully, our children won't look back at our remodeling jobs wondering why we did such lousy work.