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mudworm 07-17-2011 03:20 PM

What to do with this old ceiling?
We are remodeling our kitchen and have come to a decision point about the kitchen ceiling. Half of it is from the 1994 addition done by the previous owner. It is smooth. We don't plan on changing/removing it. The other half has textured ceiling, which we don't like. This part has a low attic above it. Upon close inspection, there are two layers of drywall boards already. The one at the top seems to have gone through some water damage. And under the crumbled insulation (which I removed yesterday), I think it has molded -- is that the mold I see?

The drywall board below (which has the textured plastering) appears to be in good shape, but there is sagging at spots that's visible in the kitchen.
What should we do with this part of the ceiling? The options I can think of include:
1) apply a third layer of drywall board (throughout the kitchen). But that means the nails/screws need to go through two layers of old boards to reach the joists.
2) Install beadboard ceiling over existing ceiling. I'm evaluating this option because I've seen beadboard wallpaper and planks online and they seem a bit easy for DIY'ers to install. Hubby is against wallpaper idea. Are beadboard planks a cheaper option over all than drywall ceiling (material, labor, time)?
3) remove both layers of the drywall boards in his part only, and install new drywall board (5/8" thick). But that probably requires shimming the ceiling joists since the new drywall ceiling needs to be flush with the other half. Or, should we strap the ceiling and the problem will be automatically addressed? The spacing between the ceiling joist is very inconsistent. There is one span that is greater than 2'.

What would you recommend?

Lastly, an OT question: Yesterday, I was working in the low attic -- terminating part of an old circuit, stuffing the old crumbing insulation into trash bags, and vacuuming the thick layer of roofing dust. I was wearing a respirator. I knew it did not fit me well, but did not bother fussing with it. When I came out, it turned out that the part on my face that was the dirtiest was in that triangle inside the respirator -- I breathed the dust for at least a couple of hours. Looking at the picture of that mold, I am a little worried. Is my exposure to the fiber glass (from the old insulation) and mold anything of concern?

gregzoll 07-17-2011 03:26 PM

Looks like you need to stop, cover all doors and close all vents into that area, and get a mold remediation company in. Also, since it appears at one time there was Knob & Tube, have you checked to make sure all of it is dead now? Only way to fix, is to remove the Gypsum board & have all wood surfaces cleaned. Who knows how much is in the walls also.

mudworm 07-17-2011 03:39 PM

Oy. We do have the walls on both sides of this part of the ceiling open. No visible molding. I think the mold between the old insulation and the old (top layer) drywall board was from some old leak in this specific area. But they re-roofed around 7 years ago. I suppose we need to be extremely careful when we remove this section of the ceiling.

gregzoll 07-17-2011 03:51 PM

No, you need to hire a company that is licensed & specializes in Mold remediation. Keeping the home open, you have just allowed all active airborne mold spores to spread across the home, when you lifted up the insulation. If you did not use proper breathing gear & equipment while working, I would stop and as stated before, close off this area, and turn off all hvac equipment while allowing the spores that are active to become airborne.

DannyT 07-17-2011 04:54 PM

after you get rid of the mold and old drywall. you can screw hat channel 16 inches on center perpendicular to the existing joists then drywall with 1/2 inch drywall instead of 5/8. the hat channel comes in 1/2 and 7/8 heights so hopefully one would get you level with the existing ceilings or close enough to float the drywall into them.

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