Chipping Away

Though some plasterers will apply a bond coat to the existing surface rather than remove all the old material, some chipping out still must be performed.  For example, the plaster or exposed aggregate should be taken out a few inches below the tile line so that the new material can be properly feathered in to the right elevation. Above left, virtually all the plaster has been removed from a set of steps so there’s enough room to work new material up to the tile. Above right, crews place tape on the tile to prevent cracking and act as a guide. They also protect the tile by using smaller jackhammers there.

Crews removed plaster surrounding an outlet, below left, to allow proper integration of the new material. Because spa footwells have so many penetrations, some professionals just chip out the entire area, below right.

When doing floor work, crews can use larger equipment and don’t have to chip at as steep an angle, above left. Walls must be done a little more delicately, with smaller jackhammers and held at steeper angles so the material peels off with greater control. This also protects the tile, which could shatter under the pressure of stronger equipment.

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