Repaint Over Ceiling Leak Stains
LESLIE: Marlene in Michigan listens to The Money Pit on WDUZ and you’ve got a ceiling question. What can we do for you?
MARLENE: Well, in my kitchen, my ceiling is sprayed on. We had a “ring” in a snowstorm and my husband thinks probably it’s above … on the roof where the antenna for the TV sits. And it has leaked in there and it’s probably, oh, 20 to 24 inches long and probably six inches wide.
MARLENE: And it looks rusty.
LESLIE: Have you fixed the leak?
TOM: Okay, and is the ceiling … is the ceiling simply stained, Marlene? Or is it deformed in any way?
MARLENE: It’s kind of, oh, pinkish-red. No, it definitely is a leak in the roof. We need to go up and check to see where it’s leaking.
TOM: Alright, well here’s what you need to do. First of all, you do need, obviously, to check where it’s leaking and to repair that leak. Having done that, you’re left with this nasty looking stain; that’s the easy part. To fix that, what you want to do is prime that area. Now, because it’s a textured ceiling, it’s difficult to brush prime it. But you can buy a spray primer.
LESLIE: Well, you can also buy – if you want to roll on the paint – you can buy a foam roller cover which is a yellow foam and it has slices in it, like you would a spiral ham on Thanksgiving. And what happens is as you’re using this roller, all of the spiral slices will open up to accommodate that texture. So you don’t have to … if you can’t get the spray, you can always go with this.
MARLENE: Oh. Because I did try just a wet cloth to try and dab it, see? But it seems that …
LESLIE: The texture came right off.
MARLENE: … the texture …
TOM: Yeah, that’s not going to work. When you have a stain like that, you have to seal it in with a primer and then you paint it on top of that. It’s not something that you can wipe off. So you can either use the roller or you can use a spray primer. There’s a product out called Upshot, with the spray in the top of the can. It shoots out vertically. And, either way, you’ve got to prime that spot and then you can paint it again.
Now you may have to paint the entire ceiling because if you just touch up that one area, you may come up with an area that’s brighter than the rest. But either way, it’s going to make your ceiling look a whole heck of a lot better. Okay?
MARLENE: Thank you very much.
TOM: You’re welcome, Marlene. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.