DIY Doctor

plaster cracking?

Postby karlg » Mon Nov 26, 2007 11:19 am

Hi there,

We've recently bought the bottom three floors (lower ground, ground, first) of a Victorian conversion (c.1910) in Hackney and since we moved in have noticed an expanding network of cracks in the plasterwork.
They're generally fine (none I could fit a fingernail into) and long and go in most directions although there are a couple of particularly vertical cracks.
The worst of the cracks are in the wall that we share with the next house in the terrace, in the basement, and seem to be most severe around the radiator, getting finer and less disctinct the further you move away. There are some cracks along the join of walls and ceilings.
The whole house was redecorated, plastered and had some damp work undertaken by a developer prior to the purchase. I imagine the work was done early this summer, we had a homebuyer survey done in early September and when we moved in at the end of September everything looked perfect. We are out most of the day but have the central heating on quite high between about five or six hours a day.

Is this normal, a case of the walls being dried out too quickly, a symptom of the house being cold and empty all day and hot in the evenings and weekends, or something more sinister? Any advice appreciated for this worried first-time buyer.

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DIY asbestos test kits

Postby kbrownie » Mon Nov 26, 2007 12:48 pm

hi karlg,
first i'd make sure the developer did really replaster the whole house and not just the odd bit and if he did is there any guarantees on this work. It's most common for houses of this age to have problems with the plaster, but not if it has just been done! The telltale sign is wallpaper and not painted walls.
Regards best of luck
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