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Old 01-15-2011, 02:11 PM   #1
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


Hi, We had a family room addition put on about 8 yrs. ago. It measures 28'x15' and has a slight A-frame type ceiling with a joyce going across the middle, also 1 skylight on each side.
There are cracks all over at the seams of the drywall , especially the ceiling, and the corners. I asked the builder why is it doing this, and he responded he doesn't know, he never seen this before.
2 of the areas near the original house look like they possibly might have water damage at the seams also. They are parallel to eachother only about 2 ft. damage, then regular cracking to the skylight.
This really upsets me and i don't know what to do. I need some professional advice on this matter.

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Old 01-15-2011, 04:29 PM   #2
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


Settling of the structure. At this point, if the addition has finished settling, due to wood shrink on the floor joists, and 2x4's for the wall studs, I would just retape & mud. Could also have been a poor mud job, but it can be fixed.

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Old 01-15-2011, 04:47 PM   #3
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Settling of the structure. At this point, if the addition has finished settling, due to wood shrink on the floor joists, and 2x4's for the wall studs, I would just retape & mud. Could also have been a poor mud job, but it can be fixed.
doesn't the tape have to be cut out?
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Old 01-15-2011, 05:28 PM   #4
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You mentioned that it was 8 years ago the work was done. Has it just occurred? If you have a camera post some pictures. You mentioned water damage, what makes you think that? Pictures are huge when asking "why is this happening". Although to be honest it can only be a educated guess even with pictures.

If you're tape is lifting then the bond between the paper and the wallboard is compromised. Yes, in repairs such as yours we pull the tape and redo.
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Old 01-15-2011, 05:43 PM   #5
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


Since you already have ugly drywall everywhere, I would trying digging on a couple of seams and corners to see if someone used fibergalss tape.

I have seen this happen before when fiberglass tape was used and the wrong mud was used over it. Fiberglass tape is the meshed kind.

You can tape over it as long as all of the surfuce is solid, but the stickler comes in, if you have to match a texture. All loose material must be removed before taping a new coat. And that could mean tearing out existing tape.
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:07 PM   #6
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


no, it is not fiberglass tape, just paper. I thought fiberglass tape was better to use than the paper? It is not textured either. Are you saying i can just tape right over the cracks?
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:17 PM   #7
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Paper is the best. Fiberglass is best used when repairing Rocklathe & old Plaster Lathe.
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:34 PM   #8
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You can tape over it as long as there is not any loose paper or mud. Be sure and sand the painted surface to scuff it so the mud will stick better.

With that much cracking, in all those different places, I would be worried that something is moving to cause the extensive cracking, if it wasn't a bad tape job.

If you tape over it remember that the seams will be sticking out a little further, so you may need to split them with a 12" knife to get the hump to hide.

I would also be checking to see if the sheetrock is tight to the framing members. Maybe not enough fasteners were used, or not correctly set.
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:42 PM   #9
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


Quote:
Originally Posted by mayhem69 View Post
no, it is not fiberglass tape, just paper. I thought fiberglass tape was better touse than the paper? It is not textured either. Are you saying i can just tape right over the cracks?
I would try and remove the tape if at all posible.
If it pulls right off then it would have falling eventually anyway's if you just tape over it.
If it does pull off. When retaping it, only mud where the tape pulled from. Or else you will have a hump.
If you do just tape over the seams, there is going to be a hump in those areas.
Hope this helps and sorry about this situation.
-Paul
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Old 01-16-2011, 10:44 AM   #10
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here are some pics.
Attached Thumbnails
drywall cracking at seams in family room-p1160001.jpg   drywall cracking at seams in family room-p1160002.jpg   drywall cracking at seams in family room-p1160003.jpg   drywall cracking at seams in family room-p1160004.jpg   drywall cracking at seams in family room-p1160005.jpg  

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Old 01-16-2011, 11:57 PM   #11
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


looks like water damage.
Tear the tape out and remud some new tape in
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Old 01-17-2011, 08:44 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by mayhem69 View Post
Hi, We had a family room addition put on about 8 yrs. ago. It measures 28'x15' and has a slight A-frame type ceiling with a joyce going across the middle, also 1 skylight on each side.
There are cracks all over at the seams of the drywall , especially the ceiling, and the corners. I asked the builder why is it doing this, and he responded he doesn't know, he never seen this before.
2 of the areas near the original house look like they possibly might have water damage at the seams also. They are parallel to eachother only about 2 ft. damage, then regular cracking to the skylight.
This really upsets me and i don't know what to do. I need some professional advice on this matter.
Skylights are notorious for water leaking. Make sure the water problem is fixed before anything else.
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Old 01-17-2011, 11:15 AM   #13
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


The cracks that are not from water damage may be truss up-lift due to the seasonal change or high winds when the roof structure flexes at the walls (these would be cracks at ceiling/wall joints). Stick framed roofs would also get these cracks if you only have one rafter tie in the middle of the room when they are required every 4' on center. Do you know if trusses or rafters (hopefully) with a ridge beam (not board)? http://www.buildingscience.com/docum...d-but-strange/

It may have taken this long for the flexing roof to show the cracks through the surface texture of the drywall due to limited movement.

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Old 01-17-2011, 12:18 PM   #14
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


The cracks that are not from water damage may be truss up-lift due to the seasonal change or high winds when the roof structure flexes at the walls (these would be cracks at ceiling/wall joints).

No offence but I'm not sure if your correct on that one. Look at the first picture with the peeling and bubbling. I'm looking at a ceiling right now with similar cracks on the taped seams. It is definatly water dammage here as I renovated the owners house years ago and he let a sink overflow. Only one area has staining on his ceiling. If it is water do fix the leaks first as suggested by Paulie of PHB construction
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Old 01-17-2011, 07:07 PM   #15
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drywall cracking at seams in family room


No offense taken, we can only guess without being there. The 1st, 2nd, and 4th pic look like water as the paper tape is lifting on the sides. The 3rd and 5th look to be structural cracks splitting below the built-up cross tie at ceiling height ? with the crack not showing paper but a straight panel edge crack similar to structural separation, could be wrong, hence I said "may" in other post.
"There are cracks all over at the seams of the drywall , especially the ceiling, and the corners." Which tells me something is moving, as Gregzoll said, though it would have to be the roof, unless cracks are on the walls also.

A few pictures farther away , 15', would help.........

Gary

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