Why Is My Ceiling Cracking?

Discovering a crack in your ceiling can be disappointing.  Cracks in the drywall can become bigger over time and can be a real eye sore.  In this article we will discuss ways to fix the cracks in your ceiling. This way you won’t be saying Why is My Ceiling Cracking?

A popcorn ceiling in a hallway that needs repairs

                        Why is My Ceiling Cracking?

When you discover a ceiling crack it can be a cause for concern.  Is it a serious problem?  It really depends on the severity of the cause and the underlying issue.  Small cracks known as hairline cracks may not be significant but larger cracks or those that appear suddenly can be a cause for concern. 

                  Manufactured Home Ceiling Cracks

When you discover a crack in your mobile manufactured home ceiling it may be best to have a professional look at it.  It really depends on how large the crack is in the ceiling.  Cracks can be caused by your mobile home being unlevel or it may have to do with the stability of the unit.  It is necessary for you to access the situation to ensure the integrity of the structure and building. 

                                   Hairline Crack in Ceiling

Hairline cracks, which are the most common ceiling cracks, can typically be fixed easily.  There are compounds that you can purchase at your local hardware store that can help.

a peak of a ceiling with a large crack running down through it

The best compound is going to be one that doesn’t require mixing, known as premixed or ready to use.  Mixing compounds creates dust and a large mess.  When you mix compounds that is typically for a large job.  For a small hairline crack you will only need a small amount.  This is one reason that ready to use are your best bet. 

A small bucket of Dry Dex drywall mud

Simply apply a small amount of the premixed mixture over the crack in the ceiling.  Once you have a generous amount applied then you will need to wait for one to two days for the compound to dry thoroughly.  Once dry you can sand it down helping it to blend into the ceiling.  If you discover that you can still see the crack in areas just repeat the process. 

                                      Causes of Ceiling Cracks

Now you may discover that the crack in your ceiling is large. It may have caused the ceiling to become separated.  You may also discover that one side sits higher than the other, causing an uneven ceiling.  When you discover a situation like this it may be because your mobile home is not level.  This can cause issues throughout your home. 

You will want to refer to our article called Mobile Home Leveling. 

Before you try to fix the ceiling crack it is important to make sure your mobile home is level. 


                                 How to Fix Ceiling Cracks

As discussed above, the first step to fixing a crack in the ceiling is discovering what caused the issue to start with.  Once your home is level you should be able to fix the crack in the ceiling more easily.  Here are the steps you should follow to fix the repair:

Follow These Steps Closely

  1. Clean the area along where the crack appears in the ceiling.  Use a shop vac or brush to clean the area well.  This will help to get rid of any particles or loose pieces that will clump into your plaster.

  2. Mix your joint compound product. These products can be purchased at your local hardware store and there are many to choose from.  Use a putty knife to apply a small layer of product over the crack.  Be sure not to put too much on the knife as gravity will simply pull it down. 

          Pictured below is a putty knife this size works great for fixing cracks.  


If you have a very large crack area you may need to use webbed tape to cover the area. To use this simply put a thin layer of mud down and then apply the tape.  Once the tape is up cover it with another small layer of plaster.   Wait a day or two for the compound to dry.  Make sure that the tape is not showing through.  If you discover that it is simply apply another coat of plaster and wait for it to dry.

  1. Once you have a nice coat on the ceiling then you can take fine grit sandpaper and sand the area. Having a small hand sander helps in this type of situation because it is hard to sand a ceiling.  Just know that dust is going to be flying everywhere so it is best to section off the area and shut doors if possible. 

  2. Once you have a smooth area and you can no longer see the crack it is time to prime and paint the area. Apply a small coat of primer to the patched area and give it time to dry.  Then you will be ready to paint the ceiling.  Unless you have some old cans of paint that match you may have to repaint the entire ceiling. 


                                      Long Crack in Ceiling

If you have a long crack in your ceiling, you can still fix this issue, it will just take longer, no pun intended.  You will first need to assess the situation. 

Do you have a hairline crack or is it much larger?  Having a large crack in your mobile manufactured home ceiling will typically be caused by the home not being level.  Mobile homes are set up quickly and over time the piers that they set on settle into the ground.  This situation can be fixed, and it is important to address this before you proceed. 

No matter the size of the crack in your ceiling follow the steps 1 – 5 above to repair it.


                        Cracks Where Walls Meet Ceiling

You may discover that you have areas along your ceiling where the wall meets that have cracked.  This is very common especially in any type of home.  There are a few ways that you can fix this situation. 

One of the easiest ways to fix this situation is to cover the cracked area with crown molding.  Crown molding is quite affordable depending on the type of wood that you purchase.  It can be installed easily, and it will add a beautiful feature to your room.  This is also the least dusty and messy option. 

A wall that meets a ceiling with a brown trim board

                        Why Is My Ceiling Cracking: Repairs 

The second option, which will be more affordable, would be to mud or plaster the crack in the ceiling and sand it out.  If you have a hairline crack a small, premixed product will work find for this situation.

a crack in a ceiling where the wall meets the ceiling

If you discover that you have a large crack, you may want to figure out why first.  Is your mobile home level?  Or do you possibly have a crack in this area caused by water damage? If it is caused by water you will want to check your mobile home roof. When it comes to water getting into your home you will want to fix it ASAP.  

Either way you will want to get the situation accessed before you repair it.  Large cracks are a cause for concern.

                                     Crack in Popcorn Ceiling

Many homes have popcorn ceiling.  Discovering a crack in your popcorn ceiling can look bad.  Again you will want to cover the crack with plaster mud as described above.  Sand out the area to your best ability.  Then once you have a smooth clean surface you can retexture the area.  There is a great product called Ceiling Texture that will spray onto your popcorn ceiling.  This product replicates your popcorn ceiling and will fill in nicely.  

A new can of Homax ceiling texture

                     Why Is My Ceiling Cracking:  Conclusion

In conclusion a crack in your ceiling looks bad in any home.  It can hurt the value of your home because most buyers do not know what to do with it.  If you must hire a professional to fix the situation it can cost money.  If the home must be leveled and the crack fixed it can cost a few hundred dollars.  No matter the situation, fixing this issue will be worth it in the end.

If you don’t want to fix your mobile and you just want to sell it quickly then visit our blog Cash Offers for Homes for more details. 


                       FAQ’s: Why Is My Ceiling Cracking

When should you worry about cracks in the ceiling?

You should worry about cracks in the ceiling when they are large, wide, or accompanied by other signs of structural issues, such as sagging or water damage. Small, hairline cracks are often normal and can be a result of settling but may require attention if they grow or multiply.

What would cause my ceiling to crack?

Ceiling cracks can be caused by various factors, including settling of the house, temperature fluctuations, moisture issues, structural problems, or the use of low-quality construction materials. Identifying the root cause is crucial to determining the appropriate repair solution.

How do you fix a crack in the ceiling?

To fix a crack in the ceiling, you typically clean the area, fill the crack with joint compound or patching material, sand it smooth, and then repaint the ceiling to match the surrounding surface. For larger or structural cracks, it’s best to consult a professional.

Why does my ceiling paint keep cracking?

Ceiling paint can crack if it was applied too thickly, the surface wasn’t properly prepared, or there is excessive moisture or temperature fluctuations in the room. Proper surface preparation, the use of appropriate paint, and addressing underlying issues can help prevent future cracking.

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