Painting & Decorating Question

Bubbling paint

Having just moved into a new house we decided to change the wall colour, it was pretty bright silk paint, we covered it in a Matt emulsion ( white) to dull down the colour and have then since painted over that with the colour of choice in the same as before a silk. When applying the second coat of silk we experienced patchy bubbling. I tried to paint over them but they just came back.

Its like air is coming out of the walls.

Any ideas why or a solution how to sort this.

Thanks for your time.

3 Answers

Best Answer

It sounds like they used v/silk instead of matt emuslion when the walls were first painted. Every time you put anything wet on these walls it will bubble in places. It will not always dry back solid. The cure for this is soak the walls with hot water and strip the paint of like you would with wallpaper.

Answered 6th Apr 2011

Proctor Decorating

Member since 6 Mar 2011

If the house is fairly old it could be the dreaded distemper problem!!
This is a older type of paint and is made from whiting and glue... if you get down to this surface you'll find it powdery if you rub your hands over it!
Its a nightmare to paint on as it always bubbles up.

The best ways to deal with it would be to completely remove it, using the method to remove wall paper is best.

If this fails then sealing it with a oil based paint or stabilising solution, this will help bind it all together and keep it on the wall, but you'll need to do this on the distemper not the newer paint.

Another problem could be lining paper that has a million coats of paint on it and could be bubbling up whilst its wet after painting. Solution is to cut a slit and shove a load of paper overlap paste and try to stick it down.

Hope this is a help to you


Answered 6th Apr 2011


Member since 26 Oct 2008

If the property is new and the new plaster has been painted, it is possible the plaster had not fully cured. All new plaster should be sealed with a permeable paint such as dulux supermatt which will allow the new plaster to breath.the bubbles will keep coming back because the base coat has not adhered to the surface of the plaster. Remove the bubbles as if you were removing wallpaper when you next decorate. regards david

Answered 10th Apr 2011

David keating property maintainance

Member since 7 Dec 2010

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