How To Use Scrim Tape

Every now and then, it's possible to avoid massively costly mistakes by carrying out the simplest and cheapest of DIY tasks

Don't think you're in the right place? This is Step 3 in a 6 part course covering re-plastering.

Start at Step 1 - How to Remove Plaster From Brick Walls

Watch the video for the main points, read below to get more...

What is Scrim Tape?

Scrim tape comes in a reel, is sticky on one side and is made of a glass fibre mesh. A 50m roll would set you back £2-£4.

What's it for?

It's used to reinforce the joint between two sheets of plasterboard. Once skimmed over, the scrim tape becomes embedded in the plaster and reinforces the joint. This greatly prevents cracking that would otherwise occur along the joint lines of the plasterboard underneath.

What tools will I need?

A pair of sharp scissors and the scrim tape, that's it! Maybe a cup of tea to keep you going!

How and where do you use it?

Once the plasterboard is fixed to the wall (screwed, dobbed or mushroom), the scrim tape can be applied easily by sticking the tape directly along the join between two plasterboards. It should be applied along the join where plasterboards butt up against each other, and in the internal corners when two boards meet perpendicular to each other. It will stick and stay in position until the plasterboard is skimmed. It's easy to cut with a good pair of scissors. For external corners (around window recesses), you should use corner anglebead.

Helpful Tip

Don't overlap scrim tape, it might get in the way when skimming.

picture of hand pushing the scrim tape onto the plasterboard
Try to keep the scrim tape aligned along the centre of the plasterboard joints

As well as along the flat joints, as shown above, Scrim Tape should be applied to all internal corners.

To do this, use the back end of a pair of scissors to push it into the corner. Don't leave it cutting across the corner, or the Scrim Tape would just get in the way when skimming the boards, really push it in.

using scissors, the scrim tape is being pushed into the inside corner
Use the back of the scissors to push the scrim tape right into the corner
pressing the scrim tape into the corner using your hand
After going over it with the scissors, press the tape onto the plasterboard using your hand.
sam pointing to inner corner of window reveal
Don't forget the inside corner of the window reveals, top left and top right.

Helpful Tip

When it comes to skimming the plasterboard and scrim tape, make sure you squash the plaster into the joints, so that the mesh becomes surrounded with plaster. Thistle Multi finish is fine for skimming over plasterboard, scrim tape doesn't require a special type of filler.

This is Step 3 of my 6 part course on re plastering a wall, the next step covers using Anglebead on corners, and goes into detail on different ways to attach it. The previous step is all about putting up the plasterboards.

Thanks for taking the time to read through this page, I appreciate it. If you have a comment or would like to get in touch, fill out the email form below and hit subscribe, I look forward to hearing from you.

6 thoughts on “How To Use Scrim Tape”

  1. Hello,
    Your tutorial is very interesting and has given me the confidence to have a go myself – but only on a small job. Is tape needed on an internal corner where new plasterboard meets existing plaster wall?

    1. Hi Alan,
      Sorry, I missed your comment, only just discovered it. I’m glad it’s given you the confidence to try it yourself. If you can add tape to that corner, yes I would. For example if that existing plaster is being re-skimmed, then it would be possible to hide the scrim tape within the skim.

  2. Hi, I have a new plasterboarded wall and an existing plastered wall. On the inner corner where they meet I understand that I should use scrim tape. But do I now need to fully plaster the existing plastered wall as well? It’s in good condition so I am hoping not. What would you suggest please?

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