Can You Plaster Over Artex Ceiling? | Checkatrade
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Can you plaster over artex ceiling?

Yes, you can plaster over an artex ceiling. If you’re looking to cover up your artex by plastering over it, you’ll have three main options.

1. Skim over the artex

Plasterers have recently become accustomed to plastering over artex ceilings, as more and more modern homeowners want to get rid of the patterned look that was so popular back in the 1970s and 80s.

If you’re confident that you don’t have asbestos in your artex, you can simply:

  1. Scrape off as much of the swirls and dimples as possible
  2. Clean up thoroughly
  3. Coat the ceiling with PVA
  4. Follow up with a skim coat of plaster

However, if there’s a chance that your artex contains asbestos, it’s safest to avoid scraping altogether, even with a mask on. This is because breathing in asbestos is a health hazard.

Asbestos was originally added to plaster to create the texture for patterning, but the practice was banned in 1999. If you want to be sure whether or not your artex contains asbestos, you can get it tested, but if not, it’s better to be safe than sorry. To skim over artex without scraping, you can:

  1. Coat the ceiling with bonding
  2. Apply PVA
  3. Follow up with a skim coat of plaster

2. Fit a false ceiling

Another option is to cover the artex by fitting a false ceiling made of drylining. This is particularly effective over dimpled or stippled artex.

Bear in mind that if you have asbestos in your artex, you’ll need to fit the false ceiling without drilling into the artex, as this would cause disturbance to the asbestos. Instead, you can use a wood or metal track.

The downside to this method is that it will lower your ceiling height slightly. So, it may not be ideal in houses where the ceiling height is already low.

3. Remove the artex

Finally, you can remove the artex altogether before plastering to achieve the finish you want.

This can be expensive, as artex is hard to remove. If you have asbestos in your artex ceiling, it will be more expensive still, as plaster containing asbestos needs to be removed by a licensed specialist.

A professional plasterer will be able to take a look at your artex ceiling and advise you on the best way of achieving the finish you want in a safe manner. Our guide to the cost of plastering a ceiling has more information.

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What others think of this article:

Martin Selby

Thanks for this advice. Seems sensible. Confirmed what I thought.

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