How To Paint Water Damaged Ceilings

If you have a ceiling that has water stains due to a leak or whatever the case may be, you want to make sure that the cause of the damage is taken care of. Then you want to assess the damaged area and check for any loose drywall tape or sheetrock that seems soft and might break. You also want to make sure that it is dry before you attempt painting it. If everything looks good then you are ready to prime.

What’s The Right Primer To Block Water Stains?

Depending on the size of the water stain you can either use an aerosol can primer that you can spray on, or, if the stain is too big you might want to get it by the gallon in a can.
In order to permanently block water stains, you will have to use an oil-based or a shellac based primer.
The product that we use at 518 Painters and we highly recommend is called “Cover Stain” and it is made by Zinsser. You can get Cover Stain in either an aerosol can or by the gallon. Cover Stain is an oil-based primer and does exactly what the name says, it “Covers Stains”.

oil based cover stain primeroil based cover stain primer for ceilings

What Primer Do I Use For Smoke Damage?

We also suggest Cover Stain if you are trying to paint smoke damaged areas. It will not only block stains such as nicotine and soot that can potentially bleed through your paint, but it also blocks odors from coming back.

What Are The Downsides Of Oil-Based Primers?

Unfortunately, anything oil-based is not easy to work with. Besides the strong odor that will leave you light headed if you do not have a fume filtering respirator, it is also not as easy to clean up. In most cases, you will need mineral spirits or paint thinner to clean any messes and your tools.


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