How to Repair Cracks with Polyfilla

  • 10 Jan, 2014
  • Peter Atmore

So you want to give the exterior/interior of your home a fresh coat of paint, but you discover a couple of cracks on the walls that you’ve never seen before, what do you do? In previous blog posts we’ve discussed preparation as a vital step before painting can commence. We could just go ahead and paint, but surface cracks in walls can cause potential damp inside your precious home which would end up being costly! What seems like a hairline crack can often end up being the start of something disastrous.

So we’ve put together a step by step guide on repairing hairline cracks. In order to complete the procedure you will need Polyfilla, a spackle tool, container (an ice-cream tub works wonders), wire-brush, sandpaper and some water.

Step 1: Prepare Surface

Using the spackle tool, open up the crack, removing loose plaster from the wall. Make sure you open the crack as much possible. I would also suggest using a wire-brush to clean out all loose grit.

Step 2: Mix Polyfiller

With a handful of Polyfilla in the container, sprinkle some water and mix using the spackle tool. You should end up with a well-mixed paste. If the mixture is too wet(resembles slime) just add a bit more Polyfilla until you get a good consistency.

Step 3: Fill Cracks

Apply the paste to the crack using the edge of the spackle tool making sure you fill and cover the crack. Immediately after application, use the spackle to scrape off all excess polyfiller so that the filled surface sits flush with the wall.

Step 4: Allow to Dry

It is imperative that you allow the Polyfilla to dry properly. Depending on the weather and location it can take up to a day. If inside, you will need to let thePolyfilla dry over night. If the surface is outside and exposed to the sun then the drying time is drastically reduced to a couple of hours. When ready for the final step the plaster joint should be white in colour with no damp evident.

Step 5: Finishing Off

The final stage requires sanding. Lightly sand over the joint until flush with the wall. Make sure you remove excess Polyfilla so that there are no bumps. If working inside, tape a plastic bag under the plastered joint so that the white dust doesn’t end up over your furniture!

So give it a try and let us know if these five steps improve your DIY experience.

Best of luck

Atmore Painters


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