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Can I use Sheetrock all-purpose joint compound to texture directly over concrete basement walls?

rdscott22 | Posted in General Questions on

I purchased a home that was built in 1958. The basement was finished by some sort of texture over the concrete and then painted. It looks nice, but I noticed some areas that the paint did not adhere well. I started removing some of the paint.

My question is: do I need to remove all the paint and texture or can I just remove the bad areas, and retexture those areas and repaint?

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  1. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #1

    The probable reason that some of the paint is not adhering well is because the basement walls are damp.

    Drywall compound is water-soluble (which is why drywall finishers sometimes use a damp sponge to smooth out rough areas). If your basement wall is damp (or sometimes damp), the drywall compound will get soft -- which is why it is an inappropriate material for finishing basement walls.

    Ideally, basement walls should be insulated before they are finished. For more information on these issues, see these two articles:

    How to Insulate a Basement Wall

    Fixing a Wet Basement

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