What Comes First Plastering Or Plumbing?

Whether a building is being constructed or renovated, it is essential to coordinate the many trades involved to ensure a seamless workflow and a successful conclusion of the project. Plastering and plumbing are two essential parts of interior building, and each of these tasks requires careful design and execution. Understanding the order in which these tasks are to be completed is critical to avoid delays, additional expenditures, and rework that is not necessary. 

This article examines the normal sequence of operations for plastering and plumbing, throwing light on the reasons why it is essential to get the sequence right to achieve both efficiency and quality within the work. Our mission is to assist homeowners, builders, and renovators in making well-informed decisions that will ensure the successful completion of their projects by analyzing the best practices and scenarios that are prevalent in the business.

What Comes First Plastering Or Plumbing?

In construction and renovation projects, the sequencing of tasks is crucial to ensure efficiency, quality, and safety. Typically, plumbing comes before plastering, and here’s why:

  • Structural Foundation: Plumbing involves the installation of pipes and fixtures within walls, floors, and ceilings. These elements form the building’s infrastructure and need to be in place before walls are sealed with plaster.
  • Accessibility: By completing the plumbing work first, you ensure that pipes, connections, and other components are easily accessible for installation and inspection. This reduces the risk of damaging finished walls if plumbing issues arise later.
  • Inspections and Testing: Plumbing systems require inspection and testing to ensure they meet safety codes and regulations. Completing this step before plastering allows for any necessary adjustments or repairs without disturbing the finished wall surfaces.
  • Concealment: Plastering typically serves to conceal internal building components like plumbing, wiring, and insulation. If plastering were done first, plumbers would have to break through the plaster to install or repair pipes, leading to additional costs and delays.
  • Finishing Work: After the plumbing is complete and the walls are plastered, the focus shifts to finishing work such as painting, installing fixtures, and other interior design elements. Plastering before plumbing can complicate or delay this process.

Plumbing comes before plastering because it involves structural work and needs to be completed and inspected before walls are sealed. This sequencing ensures a smoother, more efficient construction process with fewer risks of damage and rework.

What Is Plastering? 

Plastering is the process of putting a layer of plaster on a surface, most commonly walls, ceilings, or other architectural features, whether they are located on the interior or exterior of a building. Plastering serves the primary function of producing a surface that is level, smooth, and long-lasting. This surface can then be painted, wallpapered, or otherwise treated to significantly improve the aesthetic appeal of a building. Plastering is a finishing technique that also serves the purpose of concealing structural materials such as bricks, blocks, or drywall. 

Plastering can also give additional insulation and resistance to fire. Plasterers deal with a variety of ingredients, including gypsum, lime, and cement-based plasters, and employ a wide range of tools and procedures to guarantee an even application. It is necessary to have precision, skill, and attention to detail to accomplish the process of achieving a high-quality finish that not only makes a building seem attractive but also provides the structure with additional strength and protection.

It is possible for plastering to take on a variety of shapes, based on the requirements of the project and the type of plaster that is utilized. Traditional lime-based plasters, for instance, are preferred in historical restorations due to their breathability and flexibility. On the other hand, modern gypsum-based plasters are commonly employed due to their ease of application and rapid drying durations. The creation of textures, mouldings, and ornamental elements that lend personality to interiors and exteriors are all examples of decorative finishes that can be achieved through the use of plastering.

Where To Start When Plastering?

When starting a plastering project, whether it’s a wall, a ceiling, or another surface, it’s crucial to follow a systematic approach to ensure a smooth and durable finish. Here is a general guide on where to start and the steps involved:


  • Clean the Surface: Make sure the surface you’re going to plaster is clean, dry, and free from dust, dirt, or grease.
  • Repair Defects: Fill any large cracks, holes, or other defects with a suitable filler. This provides a smooth base for plastering.
  • Apply a Bonding Agent: If needed, apply a bonding agent or primer to ensure the plaster adheres properly to the surface.

Gather Tools and Materials

Ensure you have all the necessary tools, such as a trowel, hawk, mixing buckets, straight edges, and a spirit level.

Have sufficient plaster and other required materials like water and a mixer.

Mixing the Plaster

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to mix the plaster. Aim for a smooth, lump-free consistency, not too thick or too runny.

Starting the Plastering

  • Begin with Corner Beads: If your wall has external corners, start by attaching corner beads to ensure clean, sharp edges.
  • Apply Plaster in Layers: Start with a base or scratch coat, applying it evenly across the surface using a trowel. The goal is to create a relatively flat and even base layer.
  • Work in Sections: If you’re plastering a large area, divide it into manageable sections. This ensures that the plaster doesn’t dry before you’re finished working it.
  • Smooth and Level: As you apply the plaster, use a straight edge or darby to level it and ensure a consistent thickness. Smooth out any ridges or bumps with your trowel.
  • Apply the Finish Coat: Once the base coat has dried, apply a thinner finish coat. This is the final layer, so focus on achieving a smooth and consistent surface.

Finishing and Drying

  • Polish the Surface: As the plaster begins to set, you can lightly polish it with a clean trowel to remove imperfections and create a smooth finish.
  • Allow to Dry: Give the plaster time to dry completely. Avoid heavy humidity or direct heat sources, which can cause cracks or uneven drying.
  • Final Touches: Once the plaster is dry, you can sand any minor imperfections and apply paint or other finishes as desired.

Plastering requires skill and patience. If you’re new to it, consider practising in a small area or getting help from an experienced professional.


Plastering is an essential element in the construction and remodelling process, and successful completion of this step calls for meticulous preparation, the appropriate tools, and a thoughtful approach. It is possible to obtain a smooth and even finish by beginning with a surface that has been thoroughly cleaned, ensuring that the plaster adheres properly, and applying it in layers.

It is absolutely necessary to operate methodically, especially when working on bigger areas, to prevent uneven drying or defects. To get a product that is both long-lasting and aesthetically pleasing, finishing touches such as light sanding or polishing are essential.

If you are new to plastering, and you want to enhance your skills, you might think about practising on a smaller portion or seeking help from professionals who have experience in the field. By adhering to recommended techniques, you will be able to achieve excellent results and give your room a more polished appearance, regardless of whether you are plastering a single wall or conducting a larger project.

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