A Stepwise Guide to deal with Water Stains on Your Ceiling

Imagine at the end of a long tiring day, you come back home, freshen up, have your dinner and after that rest on your bed. Before you close your eyes, there it is, on your face – a stain on your ceiling. At first, you will be awestruck, then annoyed and finally disgusted. But none of them will solve your problem, will they? So, here are the most effective ways you can deal with the water stains on your ceiling and get rid of the nuisance.

Before you move onto the solutions for how to remove water stains from ceilings, you must look into what is causing these water stains. When it comes to what’s actually causing the stain to appear, there are several common causes. Let’s know about some common causes of water stains.

Common Causes of Water Stains on Ceilings

Water stains on ceilings can be the symptom of a much larger problem and this is something that you should look into immediately. Some Common causes of Water Stains on Ceilings are as follows:

  • Leaking Pipes: Leaking pipes are a very common cause in this situation (often directly above the stain). However, the seepage or source of leakage/ seepage does not necessarily have to be directly above the stain, it could happen elsewhere and sometimes away from the stain itself. Leakage at concealed drain pipeline from above unit/ floor can be a reason for water stain on your ceiling.
  • Leakage from the Roof: Second common cause for these stains is leakage from roof. This can happen due to imperfections in the waterproofing membrane or gap around rainwater outlets, etc.
  • Water seeping from Upper Unit/ floor wet areas: If gaps around and below floor outlet of upper unit/ floor wet areas are not filled properly, then they can cause path from where water can seep in through it. To know more about it, you can read our knowledge series post. Sometimes blocked sink, shower drain, overflowing toilet all have the potential to create the leakage patches.

The seeping water then evaporates leaving behind the dried, discoloured patch of mineral deposits. Finding and fixing the cause of the water stain and associated damp must be our first priority. So, when you come across a watery patch on your ceiling, try to identify the root cause of it. Or else, only covering it up will result in more damage to the building structure. How you do it? The best way is to get a professional inspection of the ceiling done. To know more about it, visit our page Complete Home / Property Inspection. They are one of the home inspection companies who do it using advanced technology devices. With the help of their reports, you can decide your next course of action in a logical manner. You can go through the case study to know more about it.

Step by step Guide to get rid of Water Stains on the Painted ceiling

In Indian homes, Ceiling are usually made of RCC (Reinforced Cement Concrete) and painted over it. After that second commonly used ones are the Gypsum Board Ceiling. But today we will discuss about most common ones, RCC ceiling with paint finish. Here is a step-by-step guide to stopping water/ damp marks showing on your ceiling:

1. Identify and repair the root cause of stain

Your first priority when dealing with a water stain should be to find the source of the leak or water seeping causing stain. Fix the source of the leak before repairing water stains. Get the necessary repairs done by a skilled worker to avoid further damage.

2. Prepare the ceiling for painting

Often the surface would have damaged and so you will need to patch any cracks and gaps with filler. If the plaster surface is broken or damaged, you might need to re-plaster it. Surfaces to be painted must be clean, dry & free of unwanted or poorly adhering material such as efflorescence (to know more about it, go through an article by Dulux1, dirt, etc. And where ever necessary, surfaces should be rubbed down using a suitable abrasive paper and then dusted off before the next step.

For cleaning the minor stains on walls with no cracks, gaps and no damaged plaster, according to Bobvila2, clean the stain with bleach – Cleaning the stained area of the ceiling with a mild homemade bleach solvent (one cup of bleach and three cups of warm water) will fade the stain. But we would suggest test a small portion of the stained area before applying this solution to avoid any unwanted result.

3. Apply Specific Primer

Use a brush or roller to apply a stain-blocking primer to cover the area and ensure that the stain does not come back. According to Indigo Paints3 stir thoroughly and apply 1 coat of Stain Block Primer to the stained surfaces without diluting with water. Allow to dry for 8 hrs. Two coats are recommended for difficult stains.

4. Paint your ceiling or only stained surface

After primer gets dry, you can now paint over the area that was stained and be confident that the water mark/ stain will not return.

You might end up having to paint the whole ceiling as the old paint might have become discoloured over time and to get an even colour across the whole surface, the only thing to do, may be, is to paint the whole thing.

You can now sleep soundly knowing your ceiling is now fine and as good as new.

Apart from this, if you want to know how to get water stains off a Gypsum Board Ceiling, you can read the article at Hunker4.


It is very important to find out the main reason behind the stains. If you call a painter when the source of seepage / leakage causing stain is still not found, then it will be just a waste of time and money. Hence it is very important to find out the source of water leakage before treating the stains on the wall. Do not ignore the water stains on your ceiling. Stain problem should be solved as soon as possible, to avoid further damage to your home.