Working with Calcimine Ceilings

By: Nicole Patri

In New England, a lot of our older homes have calcimine ceilings. Calcimine was a chalk-type finish that was used as a cost efficient, fast method for finishing paster- especially on ceilings. A lot of our homeowners run into one common issue with their ceilings that were once finished with calcimine.

When we asked former Almar Owner, Terry Quinn, about his experience with calcimine ceilings he told us, “We didn’t have water-based paint then. All we had was oil based or lead based paint- because it hardens and lasts a very long time. Calcimine paint was used over the old paints to do a quick cover up job. It ended up being used in many homes because of its ease of application.”

The big issue with ceilings treated with calcimine is peeling. This peeling is caused by water leaks, or most commonly, refinishing or repainting your ceilings with new paint. This peeling happens because calcimine is acidic and will break down any modern latex or oil-based paint. So, you may be asking- what are my options?

One option would be to use a product made to refinish calcimine generally know as “Cal-Cote.” This is a special paint used for calcimine ceilings. You will have to always use this paint to refinish your ceilings.

A great option we recommend would be adding a 1/4 inch ply and plaster the ceiling. Then, you can repaint the ceiling and have a great solution to covering your pesky calcimine treated ceilings.

If you’re struggling with you calcimine treated ceilings, contact Almar today (781-826-2577) to help you refinish your ceilings.

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Almar Building & Remodeling Co (Hanover Ma). As a third-generation family-owned and operated company for over 60 years Almar Building has all the benefits of a small company with the options of a larger company. From Additions, Kitchens, Bathroom, Basement Renovations, Siding, Windows, to Doors Almar services the entire South Shore of Massachusetts including Hanover, Hingham, Pembroke, Norwell, Scituate, Cohasset, Duxbury, Hanson, Braintree, Weymouth, Milton, and many more towns, Working with Calcimine