How to Stop Ceiling Paint from Bubbling: Ultimate Fixes

Written By James Donald
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Over 12 years of experience in the painting industry. Feel free to contact us with painting-related queries or comments.
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Ceiling paint bubbling can ruin the look of your room. It happens when air or moisture gets trapped under the paint. This guide will help you stop ceiling paint from bubbling. Follow these simple steps for a smooth finish.

Why Does Ceiling Paint Bubble?

Paint bubbles due to several reasons. Understanding them will help you prevent it in the future.

  • Moisture: High humidity or water leaks can cause bubbles.
  • Dirty Surface: Dust or grease can prevent paint from sticking properly.
  • Old Paint: If the old paint is loose or flaky, new paint won’t stick well.
  • Wrong Paint Type: Using the wrong type of paint can lead to bubbling.
How to Stop Ceiling Paint from Bubbling: Ultimate Fixes


Tools and Materials You Will Need

Before starting, gather these tools and materials:

  • Scraper
  • Sandpaper
  • Primer
  • High-quality paint
  • Paint roller
  • Drop cloth
  • Cleaning solution
  • Paintbrush

Step-by-Step Guide to Stop Ceiling Paint from Bubbling

Step 1: Identify The Source Of Moisture

Check for leaks in the ceiling. Fix any leaks before starting the painting process. Use a dehumidifier to reduce humidity in the room.

Step 2: Clean The Ceiling

Use a cleaning solution to remove dust and grease. Let the ceiling dry completely before moving to the next step.

Step 3: Scrape Off Old Paint

Use a scraper to remove loose or bubbling paint. Be gentle to avoid damaging the ceiling.

Step 4: Sand The Surface

Sand the ceiling with fine-grit sandpaper. This will create a smooth surface for the new paint. Wipe away any dust with a damp cloth.

Step 5: Apply Primer

Primer helps the paint stick better. Apply a coat of primer to the ceiling. Let it dry completely before painting.

Step 6: Choose The Right Paint

Select high-quality paint designed for ceilings. Avoid using cheap or low-quality paint. It is more likely to bubble.

Step 7: Apply The Paint

Use a roller to apply the paint. Paint in small sections and use even strokes. Avoid overloading the roller with paint.

Step 8: Let The Paint Dry

Allow the paint to dry completely. This usually takes a few hours, but check the paint can for specific drying times.

Step 9: Apply A Second Coat

For the best results, apply a second coat of paint. Follow the same steps as before. Let the second coat dry completely.

Additional Tips to Prevent Ceiling Paint from Bubbling

Here are some extra tips to ensure a smooth ceiling finish:

  • Use a Paint Additive: Additives can help paint flow better and reduce bubbles.
  • Control the Room Temperature: Keep the room at a consistent temperature while painting.
  • Avoid Excessive Rolling: Rolling over the same spot too many times can cause bubbles.
  • Use Quality Tools: Invest in good-quality rollers and brushes.
How to Stop Ceiling Paint from Bubbling: Ultimate Fixes


Common Mistakes to Avoid

Here are some common mistakes people make when painting ceilings:

  • Skipping Primer: Primer helps paint adhere better and prevents bubbles.
  • Painting Over Wet Surfaces: Always let the ceiling dry completely before painting.
  • Using Cheap Paint: Low-quality paint is more likely to bubble.
  • Not Cleaning the Ceiling: Dust and grease can cause paint to bubble.

What to Do If Paint Bubbles After Painting

If bubbles appear after painting, don’t panic. Here are steps to fix it:

  • Let the Paint Dry: Sometimes bubbles disappear as the paint dries.
  • Pop the Bubbles: Use a pin to pop the bubbles and smooth them out.
  • Sand and Repaint: If bubbles remain, sand the area and repaint.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Causes Ceiling Paint To Bubble?

Ceiling paint bubbles due to moisture, poor preparation, or incompatible paint layers.

How To Prevent Ceiling Paint Bubbling?

Ensure proper surface preparation, use quality primer, and maintain a dry environment during application.

Can Humidity Cause Paint Bubbles?

Yes, high humidity levels can cause paint to bubble and peel.

Is Primer Necessary To Stop Bubbling?

Yes, using a high-quality primer helps prevent paint from bubbling.


Ceiling paint bubbling can be frustrating. But with the right steps, you can prevent it. Always prepare the ceiling properly. Use high-quality materials and follow the correct painting techniques. This will help you achieve a smooth and bubble-free finish.

Remember, patience and preparation are key. Take your time and follow each step carefully. Soon, you’ll have a beautiful, bubble-free ceiling.

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