What Causes Cracks in Ceiling Plaster & How to Fix Them?

cracks in ceiling plaster

Ceiling cracks might be normal if they are small, and you do not need to worry about them. It is not an indication of structural damage.

No doubt they can be serious but not all the time as it is up to the size and location of the crack.

The cracks in ceiling plaster might be due to the structural issue and settling.

In the settling, almost all the structures settle to some point, and that is normal. So there is no need to worry about it.

If the cause is structural damage, then it should not be ignored and action should be taken immediately.

But the most important thing is to examine the ceiling first and then make a decision.

What Causes Cracks in Walls and Ceilings?

There might be two reasons for the ceiling cracks that are structural or settling.

The cracks might be due to poor maintenance or poor building material etc. let’s look at the following main causes of ceiling cracks.

  1. The first and foremost reason for ceiling cracks might be the old age of the house. It is normal to wear and tear that is called settling, in which a building faces cracks in the ceiling and other parts like walls and floor.
  2. Another cause of ceiling cracks might be moisture. It can damage anything. The ceiling might get moisture from the roof after rain or a floor in the next portion of the ceiling. There might be some leaks that cause moisture in the ceiling and leads to cracks.
  3. If the ceiling floor is heavy, it can put pressure on the ceiling plaster that will start appearing in the form of cracks.
  4. If the drywall around the ceiling is not accurately installed, that causes cracks, but these are not very serious.
  5. The ceiling cracks can indeed be due to structural damage. The foundation cracks can put pressure on the ceiling, and it will start cracking.

How to Tell if Ceiling Cracks Are Serious?

Some ceiling cracks are serious and some are not. If there are structural damages that cause ceiling cracks, then these are very serious, and proper steps should be taken.

If the cause of the ceiling cracks is moisture, you should also fix it as it can also lead to some structural issues.

If a large number of cracks are seen, then it is also a serious issue.

Fixing Cracks in Ceiling Plaster

Whether ceiling cracks are serious or not, you have to make sure that these are fixed before it gets a worse shape.

Fixing ceiling cracks requires a lot of time, expertise, and effort, so hiring a professional to do the task is advised.

However, it consists of the following steps.

  1. First of all, remove all the debris from the crack.
  2. Next find out the wooden laths in the ceiling for injecting holes in them.
  3. Drill holes in these wooden laths.
  4. Clean the debris again after drilling.
  5. Insert the adhesive in the portion of the ceiling where you have drill holes. It is good to use vinyl-floor adhesive. In the end, screw plaster with forms.

Crack in Ceiling Getting Bigger

Sometimes a small crack in the ceiling is noticed, and is overlooked because of its small size. But it can be a prediction of a storm.

For example, if there is a structural issue with the building, it might start with small cracks, but it can get bigger after some time.

If anything like this is noticed, then don’t avoid it. Just hire a professional to examine and get you out of the problem.

Cracks in Ceiling after New Roof

Reroofing can also lead to ceiling cracks. It might be that it is not accurately built or the material used in the new roof is not good.

Another reason for ceiling cracks after a new roof might be because of the pressure of the new roof.

If the roof is heavy and the ceiling is not strong enough to carry the weight of the new roof, then it can cause shaking and cracking in.

If the water is used on the new roof and it finds a way to get to the ceiling like a tiny hole in the roof can cause water dripping on the ceiling.

In this way, the moisture will cause cracks in the ceiling. The problem should fix to avoid worse results.

Crack in Ceiling Drywall Seam

If cracks are noticed in the ceiling drywall, then one should not worry about them. It can be due to poor installation of drywall.

Due to an extra pressure on drywall seams, it starts depressing the ceiling, which result in cracks.

However, it would help if you made sure that these were correct at the time of drywall installation, so this issue could not happen.

Types of Ceiling Cracks

After seeing a crack in the ceiling plaster, one might be worried as it can be serious. However, it should be classified in the following types of ceiling cracks.

  • Hairline Cracks: if there is an issue with the plaster over drywall due to excessive temperatures. There is nothing to worry about it.
  • Straight Cracks: if the topping is not accurately installed, then straight cracks on the ceiling occur. These are not serious.
  • Brown/Yellow Cracks: it is an indication of a water leak. It can lead to serious issues, so call a professional.
  • Spiderweb Cracks: These cracks are due to settling, which is not serious if the size is minor.
  • Crack between Wall and Ceiling: it is due to truss uplift. You should call professionals to prevent the worst issues.
  • Deep and Large Cracks: it means there is a serious structural issue.


Ceilings are used in buildings to provide strength or keep the temperatures moderate. They are mostly lined with plaster.

Over time, the plaster starts to wear out and cracks in ceiling plaster start to appear.

Initially, they are not a big issue. But, if not taken care of, they end up causing great damage to the buildings.

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