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Through the Cracks: Taking Note of Your Plaster Walls

If you’re like most homeowners, you probably don’t think much about your plaster walls until there’s a problem. But taking the time to inspect your plaster walls on a regular basis can help you identify potential problems early on before they have a chance to cause serious damage.

That said, below are just a few indicators to watch out for when cracks begin to break through the plasters.

First of All, What Causes Plaster Cracks?

Plaster cracks typically occur in older homes as the plaster ages and settles. Plaster is a very sturdy material, but over time it can become brittle and crack under the weight of the house. These cracks are usually small and do not pose any threat to the structural integrity of the house.

As a new build or extension settles, the weight of the building can cause plaster to crack in some places. This is due to the building’s foundations slowly settling into the ground. This process usually takes 1-3 years to complete.

The humidity, temperature, and moisture levels in an environment can cause cracks to form in plaster walls. The plaster expands and contracts as the conditions fluctuate, which causes the structure of the building to swell and sink. This can result in hairline cracks that become more noticeable over time. When new plaster is applied to walls, it is normal for hairline cracks to form as the plaster dries out.

If your home is located on a busy road, you may experience some cracking due to the vibration from the traffic. However, this is usually no cause for concern. That said, you may also see cracks around your windows if you’re in a quiet spot. This is especially common with timber frames, which are not supported by a lintel.

Plaster cracks can be either cosmetic or structural. Cosmetic cracks are usually small and can be fixed with a plaster skim. Structural cracks are usually bigger and require more investigation.

The Different Types of Cracks to Look Out for on Your Plaster Walls

1. Hairline Small Cracks

Hairline cracks in vertical lines are not something you should worry about in your house. They can be caused by settling or a sudden change in weather.

2. Vertical or Horizontal Cracks

If the cracks in your home are horizontal or vertical, it may be due to the drying or shrinking of the construction materials. These types of cracks are common after new construction. These problems may not be considered dangerous.

3. Jagged Pattern Cracks

The jagged cracks in the foundation can cause structural problems if they are left untreated. These cracks can be caused by the foundation settling or by uneven settling. If you notice these cracks, it is best to call a professional builder to come and assess the problem.

4. Staircase Steps Patterned Cracks

The cracks in the floor that look like stairs can be a cause for concern if they are wide and long. This may be because the floor has settled or moved significantly. These kinds of cracks can also be caused by one side of the floor being higher than the other.

When it comes to your home, you can never be too careful. A thorough inspection from a professional builder or investigator can save you a lot of trouble down the road.


Overall, it is important to take note of your plaster walls and to repair any cracks as soon as possible. Cracks can be caused by a number of things, including settling, temperature changes, and humidity. If left unattended, cracks can worsen and lead to serious structural damage.

If you are looking for a company that offers plastering services on the Gold Coast, look no further than our expertise here at We Plaster & Recruit. We are a registered plastering company providing the best plastering services with operations throughout Brisbane, Gold Coast and Queensland areas. Call us today and let us tend to all the visible cracks on your plaster walls.

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