How to Plaster a Wall with Cement? | Simple Steps to Follow

Plastering the wall with cement provides you with a smoother surface and will allow you to customize the wall as you want. Plastering the wall with cement may seem easy but it will need proper experience and applying methods. Such as the need to maintain the thickness of mortar, the need to prepare the mortar properly, and so on.

But if you follow a proper guideline then without anyone’s help, you can plaster exterior or interior walls by yourself. In today’s article, we have provided the proper guideline for plastering a wall with cement.

Follow the steps and instructions and finish the wall plastering work with ease. So, without any further ado, let’s begin.

How to Plaster a Wall with Cement

Things You Will Need for Plastering a Wall with Cement

Before starting the plastering work, you will need to manage the equipment and materials that you will require during the working period. Here is the list of equipment and materials that you will need –

  • Cement.
  • Sand.
  • Water.
  • Trowel.
  • Mortar Pans.
  • Measuring tape.
  • Metal float.
  • Spade.
  • Plumb Bob.

Arrange the aforementioned materials and tools then get started the plastering work.

4 Steps Guide for Plastering a Wall with Cement

The steps are quite easy and following them will help you to plaster properly and finish the work with ease. If you want a plaster thickness of 15 mm or more then you will need to provide double coating. Here we have provided the steps for both single coat and double coat. 

Let’s begin the plastering work.

Step 1: Prepare the Wall

First of all, we will need to prepare the wall for the cement. You will need to prepare the wall before 6 hours of starting plastering. Here are the things that you will need for preparing the wall. 

  • Take a hard brush or wire brush to clean the joints and the surface of the walls. By doing so, the surface and the joints will be cleared. And this will make the mortar joints rough. Making it rough will help for achieving a good bonding between the wall and the plaster.
  • If there are holes in the wall, make sure you have covered them.
  • Now, take water and wash the entire wall and keep it wet for 6 hours.

NOTE: If there is old plaster on the wall, then you will need to chip the plaster off and dig the mortar joints to a depth of 12 mm. It will ensure better bonding. 

Step 2: Basic Ground Work for Achieving Uniform Thickness

Having a uniform plaster thickness is mandatory. That’s why you will need to do some basic groundwork. 

  • First, you will need to fix a dot on the wall. You can use a patch of plaster of 15 mm X 15 mm X 15 mm (Assuming you want 15 mm plaster thickness). 
  • Now, from the first dot, make another one horizontally and then vertically and the distance between these dots will be 2 meters. The vertical dots need to be in the same line and you can ensure that by using the plumb bob
  • When the dots are fixed, screeds will be formed between them and it will help you to get uniform thickness.

Step 3: Prepare Mortar or Plaster and Apply 1st Coat

Now, it’s for preparing the plaster. If you are plastering the exterior wall then you will need to maintain 1:4 or one part of cement and 4 parts of sand. If you are plastering the interior wall then you can use a 1:5 or 1:6 mixing ratio.

Prepare the plaster according to your need. Now, let’s start the 1st coating.

  • Take the trowel and apply the plaster between the space of the screeds and the wall surface.
  • After that, take the metal float or wooden straight edges to level the wall surface.
  • Let the first coat set but not dry. Take a scratching tool to apply a scratch coat on it. It will help to create a proper bond with the second coat.

NOTE: For brick masonry, the initial coating will be 12 mm, and for concrete masonry, it should be between 9 mm to 15 mm.

Step 4: Apply the Second Coat

After completing all three steps, we are at the end game now. Before applying the second coat, you will need to evenly damp the first coat. Now, take the trowel and apply the plaster, and level the surface with the metal float or wooden straight edges.

Now, you have properly finished the plastering work on your wall. After that, you will need to keep the wall wet for the next 7 days with water for achieving the proper strength, and hardness and prevent forming cracks due to heat.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions and Answers)

Can I use only cement as plaster?

Unfortunately, you can’t. Only using cement will make the plaster brittle and hard. And cracks will form on the surface of the wall. Basically, the cement isn’t that much flexible. Using sand with it makes it more flexible and helps to avoid any kind of post-construction issue.

How do I get cement to stick to a wall?

To stick cement to a wall, you can use adhesive material or a bonding agent. Mix the adhesive material in the plaster or mortar and then use the mortar for plastering the wall. Easy peasy lemon squeezy! 

Which cement is best for plastering?

Between Pozzolana Portland Cement and Ordinary Portland Cement, PPC is best for plastering. Compared to OPC, it is less prone to form cracks and has a lower heat of hydration.

Can I use gypsum as plaster?

Yes, you can use gypsum as a material of plaster. Gypsum has a lot of positive sides that include good insulation properties, impact resistance, can be used directly on any type of brick, etc. 


Lastly, plastering a wall with cement is very easy work to do. Just you will need to know the steps and follow the instruction properly. And by this, you will be able to plaster the wall without the help of any professionals. Just remember the important notes and start plastering.

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