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Primer Coats Keep Cracking

Steel AngelSteel Angel Registered User regular
edited January 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
So my girlfriend and I have been working on a wallpaper removal and painting project the last month and we're almost done except for one corner inside the room. This corner is one that joins a wall that is an outside wall with one that is a shared wall with the neighboring townhouse.

In this corner, the primer we're using (Zinsler) develops some cracks in it as it dries. We had to apply spackle in the corner due to some cracks we found, but gave that plenty of time to dry before we sanded it down.

Most of my searches only turn up paint cracking due to not using primer properly, nothing like this. So we're wondering if anyone has any insight into why this is happening and how to fix it so we can finish painting. Kind of would like to be able to use my bedroom again after all.

Steel Angel on
Big Dookie wrote: »
I found that tilting it doesn't work very well, and once I started jerking it, I got much better results.

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  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    How's the humidity in the house? Very low? I'm assuming you're in pretty cold weather in Maryland, low humidity can cause primer to crack like that. Or high heat, is there a vent/heater nearby?

    Other than that, make sure you've taken off all the previous paint/wallpaper, and the wall is in a good state.

  • ceresceres Humming hallelujah in the dark Lost with a compass in the fogSuper Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited January 2011
    My first thought was honestly that you applied it too thickly to that area and then low humidity took it from there, but that probably falls under 'not using primer properly'.

    It'll be just as quiet when I leave as it was when I first got here
    I don't expect anything.

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  • ZeonZeon Registered User
    edited January 2011
    There could be oil or dirt stuck in the material youre priming over. Oil or contamination under the surface will cause the paint/primer to crack as it dries.

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  • Steel AngelSteel Angel Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    bowen wrote: »
    How's the humidity in the house? Very low? I'm assuming you're in pretty cold weather in Maryland, low humidity can cause primer to crack like that. Or high heat, is there a vent/heater nearby?

    Other than that, make sure you've taken off all the previous paint/wallpaper, and the wall is in a good state.

    There's a vent nearby, but it's definitely not the heat. The parts of the wall closer to the vent have had no issues. Neither has the rest of the room so I'm not 100% sure if it's the humidity.

    I did notice that the wall adjoining the corner that borders the outside was colder than the other walls so I'm wondering if having to go over a colder surface could lead to problems like this.

    Big Dookie wrote: »
    I found that tilting it doesn't work very well, and once I started jerking it, I got much better results.

    Steam Profile
    3DS: 3454-0268-5595 Battle.net: SteelAngel#1772
  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    If the temperature shift is a huge one, yeah it could.

  • Steel AngelSteel Angel Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Alright. So what would be a good way to deal with the current wall and primer cracks to allow for a smooth coat of paint later? I do have a portable heater I can use to hopefully bring the corner up to a more normal temperature.

    Big Dookie wrote: »
    I found that tilting it doesn't work very well, and once I started jerking it, I got much better results.

    Steam Profile
    3DS: 3454-0268-5595 Battle.net: SteelAngel#1772
  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Be careful because heat can cause an alligator like texture in the primer too. Try a humidifier in the room and see if that helps.

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