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Ceiling renovation help!?!

I have a large living room ceiling (about 700 sqft) in my house that was built in 1962 that is textured in what I've been told is "mud swirl".  It basically looks like someone just put a solid layer of mud on the ceiling and took a comb and made circles all over the ceiling.  There are some cracks in the ceiling from previous foundation issues and it is not feasible to patch to match the swirls and we would like a more updated look anyways.  Does anyone have any ideas on how to get a new look?  I've had the following ideas but nothing seems to work. 


  • Filling in the mud so the ceiling is flat then having a contractor spray new texture then do knock down to match the walls - I've been told this will create too much weight on the old drywall and will cause it to fall down.  But this is my preferred solution so if anyone knows a way to make that work it would be awesome!
  • Putting textured wallpaper up over the existing surface - tried this and the glue wouldn't stick.
  • Tongue & groove ceiling - We can't afford to do this and don't really want that look anyways
  • Sanding the swirls off then putting in new screws (currently nailed in) then blowing new texture to match the walls - this seems like the most viable option but like I said, we have 700 feet and that is going to be a TON of work, especially since we have no clue how many coats of paint are on the ceiling. 
  • Ceiling tile - I'm not really sure how that would work and how it would tie into the crown molding.  And from what I've found it's pretty expensive.
  • Putting up another layer of drywall over it - Not something we want to do.


Can someone help me either find another solution or give their opinion on which of these is the best option?  Thanks!

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Posted 2011-06-06T17:01:16+0000  by apmemo apmemo


Hi  Apmemo. This is Mike the Home Depot Answer Man. Welcome to the community.

I looks like you have done your homework

I would suggest you scrape off as much of the existing texture as you can, screw the drywall to the ceiling joists and then sand down the remaining texture and apply a new knockdown texture coat.

Screwing the drywall in place will help minimize future cracking caused by the popping nails.

I think you would be wise to have a contractor do the work. Redoing a ceiling of that size is a project many homeowners find overwhelming.

Often redoing the ceiling makes the walls look dull and unattractive so I would repaint the entire room to assure an even fresh appearance.

I hope this gives you some direction for your project.




Posted 2011-06-06T18:07:17+0000  by Mike_HD_OC
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