Posts tagged "plaster"

How can I reuse or recycle old plaster board/drywall?

We’re finally having some damp-proofing work done on our lower ground floor – in what will become our awesome office. I say “finally” because it was supposed to be task #1 when we bought the house, finished before we moved in, but we’ve been living here for four months now…

The room is damp because it’s partially underground on one wall but, more importantly, it was used as a bedroom for years and was made completely draft-proof. The chimney was blocked up, then covered with a wall, the floor was completely sealed with asphalt, all the windows/doors UPVC double-glazed and the outside walls were sealed with render – the damp air had nowhere to go but sit in the walls. Stone-built Victorian houses like this used to breathe, were built to breathe – but they suffocated it.

It’s already improved loads since we opened up the chimney but the work we’re doing now will stop the problem happening again. Unfortunately though, it involves a lot of destruction and mess – all the old water-logged plaster and plasterboard (drywall) has to be pulled away and replaced. The last lot of rumble we generated became filler for the sloped area we’ve levelled up in the garden but we don’t need any more for that. So what else can be done with it? Can it be used for anything more productive than its ability to take up space?

I seem to remember reading somewhere that about 15% of it is wasted during manufacture/installation and new stuff – offcuts – can be reclaimed and repressed into new boards. Can this be done with old boards too?

UPDATE: Oh, it seems plasterboard is now classed as hazardous waste in the UK so it can’t be landfilled – does that have an impact on its reuses?

How can I reuse or recycle plaster casts of feet?

Plaster casts of feetWe’ve had a bit of an unusual suggestion from Estelle:

I once had these models made of my feet. They used them to generate orthotics for my flat feet. Now I have these cumbersome, heavy plaster-of-paris models sitting around at home… What can one do with them?

I don’t know how heavy they are but maybe paint them for funky bookends or doorstops?

Any other suggestions?

How can I reuse or recycle … random shaped sticking plasters?

Sticking plasterWe’ve had an email from Andrea:

Sometimes I buy assortment packs of adhesive bandages (we call them Band Aids whether they’re Band Aid brand or not) and when I’m through with all the regular ones I’m left with the small round spot ones. I haven’t figured out why that size and shape exists to begin with.

Is there any use for them?

My guess would be that they’re for people who have to inject themselves regularly but since I have a complete and utter needle phobia, I’ve got a pile of them here too. I’ve recently started buying own brand plasters that are just different rectangle shapes but have a number of random shaped ones left over from previous boxes – those little circle ones, and the (for want of a better description) butterfly shaped ones particularly.

So any suggestions for alternative uses?

(Photo of a standard shaped plaster by monique72)

How can I reuse or recycle … a bag of plaster?

Bag of plasterWe had our leaky roof fixed last week and needed to replaster the leak-damaged part of the ceiling in the attic room. Our plasterer could only find giant bags of plaster for sale but it was only a small bit that needed fixing, so we’ve got about 20kg of powdered plaster left.

The plasterer said he won’t be able to use it before it went solid so he left it with us: we figured we’d be able to get rid of it one way or another.

I’ve put it on our local Freecycle group with the hope that someone can use it but if it doesn’t disappear down that route, anyone got any suggestions on how we can reuse or recycle it in the next few weeks? Or does anyone know any way to stop it going solid – will an airtight container suffice?

According to the bag, it’s “one coat plaster” that is “suitable for most internal surfaces” but we have no internal surfaces that need plastering. Can it be used for craft things or is that a whole different type of plaster?