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chris.martin2 09-19-2011 01:53 PM

Crown molding falling down
I just moved into my house a few weeks ago, and today the crown molding in my living room detached from the wall. If it wasn't for the curtain rod, it would have completely fallen down. I don't remember seeing it coming free from the wall, but it very well could have gone unnoticed. I pulled it down so that it wouldn't fall on anyone (it's rather heavy)
What can be done about this? Is there any way to check/reinforce the rest of the molding in the house to make sure it won't fall as well?

1910NE 09-19-2011 03:11 PM

New house? Old house? Recently remodeled? Some pictures always increase the chance of someone being able to help correctly diagnose the problem

What was used to fasten it to the ceiling/wall? And is the fastener currently attached to the molding or the ceiling/wall? If it's attached to the molding, the nails are either too short, or simply missed anything solid to hold onto. If the nails are still on the wall......i'm stumped, unless the molding is rotten for some reason...

Knowing what held this piece up should give you a pretty good idea what is holding up the rest of it.

chris.martin2 09-19-2011 03:19 PM

The strange thing is, there doesn't appear to be a whole lot that was holding it in. There seems to be a lot of plaster on the molding, and the wall has a lot of kind of square-ish divots in it. I'm renting, so I don't have a whole lot of information on the history of the house, but I'd say the molding would be at least 5-10 years old, probably older than that.
I realize that as a renter it's the landlords responsibility, but I want to have a bit of information going in, so I know what it's going to take to fix. I want to make sure that it's done properly and not going to fall on me in my sleep! If that means doing it myself, then so be it.

oldhouseguy 09-19-2011 04:34 PM

Use liquid nails construction adhesive liberally.

I glued a 2x6 to my basement workshop wall ten years ago to see how long it would stay.

It is still up there.

BigJim 09-19-2011 05:05 PM

Is it wood or plaster and are there any nails or is it just glued?

chris.martin2 09-19-2011 08:22 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Maybe these pictures can help. The first shows the wall where the molding had been attached. Notice the divots along the bottom and along the ceiling. This appears to be where it was attached.
Attachment 38422
Next is the back of the molding itself
Attachment 38423
And here is a shot of what it looked like when I first went in the room
Attachment 38424

Thanks for any help

chris.martin2 09-21-2011 07:53 AM

Any suggestions? If it is plaster molding (which I suspect it is) is there any way of reinforcing the rest of it around the room, or should it all come down and put new molding up?

BigJim 09-21-2011 11:25 AM

It looks like it is a styrofoam trim, if it is you can glue and nail the molding back up then just fill the nail holes. Is the trim light weight or very heavy? If it is fairly light it is styrofoam if it is very heavy it is plaster but I doubt it is plaster.

The joints of the styrofoam trim should be glued and the glue should be for that specific type of molding. Plaster trim, the joints must be glued, but the glues must be for plaster. Do not try to nail plaster trim as it will bust it.

chris.martin2 09-21-2011 11:38 AM

It's definitely not styrofoam. the smaller piece alone had to weigh around 10-20 lbs, it was much heavier than I expected it to be

JDMyersville 09-21-2011 12:02 PM

It looks like whoever installed it simply held it up and fired glue, no ceiling/floor joists...nothing. How much of the nail was protruding from the trim that fell? IF he nailed it, he should have used a 2-1/2" nail, located and hit the framing, and glued it because of the weight. Looks to me like none of those was done...and I'm not sure I would trust the rest, it was probably done the same way.

mrgins 09-22-2011 06:07 PM

I never glue my crown moulding. I use nails or trim screws into the top plate and ceiling joist, and nailing blocks on the walls parallel to the ceiling joists, then I caulk where it meets the walls and ceiling. Works for me. Looks like this guy tacked it to the drywall and used joint compound as an adhesive! Probably the guy that did it was the low bidder that the landlord needed!

JDMyersville 09-23-2011 09:39 AM

Yeah, I would only glue it if it was as heavy as described...definitely hit the framing...not really much doubt as to who was the low bid on this trim install...:wink:

Tom Struble 09-23-2011 12:59 PM

that does look like plaster trim and bedding it in is exactly how it is supposed to be attached

mrgins 09-23-2011 05:27 PM


Originally Posted by Tom Struble (Post 734551)
that does look like plaster trim and bedding it in is exactly how it is supposed to be attached

It looks like the method used, but the OP says its not plaster trim

Tom Struble 09-24-2011 06:09 AM


Originally Posted by chris.martin2 (Post 732874)
Any suggestions? If it is plaster molding (which I suspect it is) is there any way of reinforcing the rest of it around the room, or should it all come down and put new molding up?


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