Premier Plastering Service
Seriously Smooth Plasterers
Premier Plastering Service
Seriously Smooth Plasterers
Artex is a type of interior coating usually applied to ceilings but can be found on walls also. It is used with a strong textured effect to create swirls and patterns and was very popular in Britain in the 1970s. It is now considered to have a very dated look and many people who's houses still possess it would like it removed and replaced with a more modern style. Although the name is actually a trademark for Artex Ltd, it has been commonly used for any form of heavily textured interior plasterwork.
Should I remove my Artex?
Most people these days want their Artex removed purely on stylistic grounds. Contemporary houses tend to have smooth flat walls and ceilings and the busy patterned look of Artex can make a room feel outdated. There are however more important reasons why Artex should be removed. The word itself is an acronym for Asbestos Reinforced TEXtured coating and up until 2000 it was made using white asbestos to strengthen it. If you have Artex in your house, don't worry you are perfectly safe, it only poses a potential risk when in it's powdered form. It is advisable though to not attempt to sand or drill it, and although it only contains the less dangerous white asbestos it is still important to use professionals when attempting to remove this product. Even modern, non-asbestos Artex can be hazardous to remove because of the dust particles and neither kind are recommended for removal by non-experts.
Asbestos was added because it is light, strong and has thermal insulation properties and its dangers weren’t fully understood or acknowledged at the time. Artex Ltd stopped adding asbestos in the mid 1980s but other companies continued to use it up until twenty years ago and it can still be found in some products even today.
Removal of an Artex ceiling is covered by The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. This details the requirements for working with asbestos materials. There is more information available at the Health and Safety Executive website.
There are various methods people use to remove Artex and searching media like YouTube or Google will bring up a wealth of videos and information on how to do it. Some people have used heated wallpaper strippers to melt the Artex so it can be peeled away from the surface. This is messy and time-consuming but is often attempted by people looking to save money by doing it themselves. There are many risks involved with this process however as there is still a great deal of potential to release asbestos into the environment endangering the health of everyone in the house. It is also a legal requirement to notify the Health and Safety Executive before melting any form of Artex because of the dangers of this method.
This blog post has more information on removing textured ceilings.
It is therefore highly recommended that only trained professionals attempt to remove Artex from walls and ceilings. The Health and Safety Executive also advises home owners to only hire trained personnel rather than attempting to do it themselves.
The team at Plastering Warrington are available to remove your Artex cleanly and professionally for a competitive price. We can also replace them with smooth modern plasterwork to bring your home into the twenty-first century.
What are the options for professional Artex removal?
It is possible to simply apply a new layer of plaster over existing Artex to create a smooth even surface. This requires that the Artex is clean and dry and firmly bonded to the wall or boards underneath. Artex was often used to hide cracked or damaged ceilings or walls and so it is vitally important that a thorough inspection of the condition of the structure is conducted beforehand. The added weight of an additional plaster layer on a ceiling for example may produce disastrous results if the underlying Artex is not properly bonded. Any loose plaster must therefore be carefully removed along with any prominent peaks in the Artex. Some peaks can stand proud by as much as 10mm from the surface and will be visible through a plaster skim coat unless they are either sanded or scraped away beforehand. If the Artex contains asbestos this could be potentially hazardous as asbestos particles are likely to be released into the environment during this process.
Plastering over Artex is a relatively simple way to update a room but it nevertheless requires careful preparation and strict adherence to the regulations regarding working with asbestos materials. Plastering Warrington will re-plaster your Artex for a great price and leave you free from the hassle and risks of doing it yourself!
This requires the Artex ceiling to be covered with a bonding agent. This is spread and built up in thin layers. Each layer needs to dry before the next is added. Bonding layers are extremely sticky, so will easily bond to the Artex. The final layer will need to be smoothed, and then a layer of plaster can be applied to create a modern smooth ceiling.
This is a very safe method of covering your ceiling. The Artex is left intact, so there is no chance of releasing asbestos into your home but it does require your ceiling to be strong and in good condition beforehand.
Scrape, Sand and Skim
This is a long tedious job requiring all the Artex to be removed by chipping away with a knife until the surface is flat enough for a skim of plaster to be applied. Although this has the advantage of removing the majority of the Artex for good, it releases a lot of potentially hazardous dust into the environment which needs to be dealt with appropriately.
If you prefer complete removal of your Artex this is probably the best option to choose. Should you wish, the entire ceiling can be removed and re-boarded and plastered. This is quicker than chiselling off the Artex but is likely to be more expensive.
This is a popular choice as it less time-consuming than other options and the result is a perfectly flat ceiling. Plaster boards are placed over the top of the Artex and fixed to the joists then sealed and plastered. As there is no removal of any part of the Artex there is no risk of releasing asbestos into the environment. There is also the added advantage of being able to include things like added holes for light fixtures. This is particularly useful in kitchens and bathrooms where modern downlighters can be installed. Plaster boards also offer additional sound and heat insulation by creating double thickness ceilings which helps save on energy costs.
Although it is a fairly simple mess-free process and doesn't involve the dangers of asbestos it is still a job best handled by professionals. Plaster boarding requires at least two people to handle the heavy sheets, and a skilled plasterer to ensure a perfectly bonded and flat surface on top for painting. Plastering Warrington can plaster board your Artex ceiling for a great price leaving you safe in the knowledge of a job well done.
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