Cracked Ceiling? Don’t Panic!

crack in ceiling

There you are, relaxing in your easy chair and contemplating life. You look up and notice a massive crack in ceiling.

Panic immediately ensues. Does this mean a completely new ceiling and thousands of dollars for the cost or is it purely cosmetic and nothing a lick of paint won’t solve?

Well here’s our quick guide to what the cracked ceiling can mean and the ceiling crack repair options. Yes, a cracked ceiling can spell disaster, sometimes.

But it can also be a sign of ageing and not necessarily a precursor to bigger problems. Contact Southern Ceiling Repairs for more information.

Crack in Ceiling: What Causes Ceiling Cracks

Let’s tackle the more worrisome issue first. If you see a crack that appears to be wider than 1/8-inch, you could be dealing with potential structural damage.

A large crack accompanied by a sagging ceiling can mean you have a structural problem on your hands that needs immediate attention. The cause could be due to several issues including storm damage, burst pipe or excess weight bearing down on the ceiling joints.

Professional and experienced ceiling crack repair companies like ours can come and examine the ceiling, identify the cause and fix ceiling cracks safely and quickly.

Crack in Ceiling: Typical Cracks in Ceiling and How to Address Them

Here are some of the most common types of ceiling cracks, what they may indicate, and how to deal with them.

1. Large Crack With Discolouration

large crack with discolouration

This could be a sign of a potential moisture problem. This can occur when an overhead leak begins to trickle between the ceiling’s drywall panels and causes the joint tape to loosen.

To prevent the leak from causing more severe water damage, the leak needs to be identified, the moisture or dampness needs to be dried out and the ceiling repaired as quickly as possible. Once that is done, the loose tape will need to be removed and the joint re-taped to the drywall.

While you can patch the hole in the ceiling yourself, identifying the source of the leak is extremely tricky and the repair will depend on the ceiling type and the finish e.g. plaster ceiling with a textured finish, so again it is always best to call in the professionals.

2. Horizontal Cracks Between the Wall and the Ceiling

horizontal cracks between the wall and the ceiling

They are often caused by roof trusses that pull upward due to temperature fluctuations. This upward pulling lifts the ceiling drywall resulting in a crack between the ceiling and the wall.

The only viable solution to this is once again, calling in the professionals to remove and re-attach the fittings to the drywall and trusses using clips or blocks.

3. A Thin Straight Crack

a thin straight crack

On the other end of the scale, a thin, straight crack could be due to a poorly taped joint. An insufficient amount of drywall mud during the taping process means the tape may not have adhered as securely to the joint as necessary.

This results in a straight crack along the edges where the tape has become loose.

This is just a cosmetic issue and can easily be fixed by applying some drywall compound underneath the loose tape and re-fixing it to the drywall. It won’t take long and with some paint around the edges, the crack will have completely disappeared.

4. Fine Cracks That Run in All Directions

fine cracks that run in all directions

These are caused by the cracks in ceiling paste used to create a textured effect on the ceiling. As the compound dries, it starts to shrink and it is this shrinkage that causes the cracks.

Again, this is easily removed by applying a layer of drywall compound over the cracks.

How to Tell if a Crack Is Structural

Some of the signs of ceiling cracks caused by structural damage include:

  • Windows and doors that stick
  • Bowed or cracked walls
  • Chimneys or porches that have separated from the building
  • Mouldings that are out of place or have cracked
  • Stair step cracks in masonry or bricks
  • Cracks in the foundation wall which result in water in your basement
  • Uneven floors that sag or slope
  • Structural damage can also be caused by recent landslides or earthquakes.

Hire Professional Ceiling Crack Repair

Ceiling cracks and wall cracks can be incredibly worrying. However, they are less likely to be structural issues.

They are more likely to result from the house settling with age. Or they can be caused by the contraction of the frame.

Moisture fluctuations can also contribute to these cracks. These cracks typically create superficial crevices.

They are usually not indicative of a collapsing ceiling. While the above is a good guide, and the cracks seem likely to be superficial, the best option is to seek professional help and advice.

So who to call for ceiling cracks? That’s when we come in.

At Southern Ceiling Repairs, we are number one in ceiling crack repair. We are experienced in repairing cracks in ceiling plasterboard and fixing ceiling cracks no matter the problem or the size.

Contact us now and let our professional team repair your damaged ceiling.

Author's Profile

  • Mark Churms

    Mark Churms is the owner and operator of Southern Ceiling Repairs, specializing in plasterboard ceiling and wall repairs and installations. With years of hands-on experience, Mark focuses on delivering consistent and high-quality plasterboard repairs and installations.