If you have a drywall surface to repair, chances are good that you have one of several issues to deal with. Regardless, repairing drywall can very easy to do. A lot depends on the type of repair to make, but the size and where the damage is located also plays an important part. This article will provide you with the information you need to make a professional looking repair.
Repairing drywall begins with good tools and materials. Generally speaking, you will need some saws, a stud finder, a tape measure, a square, and a knife. For materials, you will probably need a corner bead, string, drywall tape, drywall screws and nails, joint compound, and some drywall.
How to Repair Surface Cracks
If you have a surface crack to repair, chances are good that it is a problem with the tape. This is because drywall has no seams, and the only cracks that usually appear are when the tape separates from the surface. In these cases, it’s best to use your knife and cut the tape back enough to check if the crack goes the paper that is over the seam. If it appears to still adhere to the surface, it’s probably the result of age. In this case, just refill the crack with new compound.
How to Fix a Deep Crack
If it appears that the crack goes through the tape, or that the tape has pulled away from the surface, it’s best to remove the tape and patch it. This is easy to do by cutting each end of the tape on each end of the crack. Remove the tape, but don’t pull the paper on the drywall off the surface. After this, remove just a little of the compound, then refill the crack. While this is still wet, cover the crack again with fiberglass tape, then coat it with another layer of compound.
Fixing Nail Pops
A nail pop happens when something hits the wall and a nail that has been set into the wall pulls away from it, leaving the head of the nail away from the surface of the drywall. This is another repair that is usually pretty easy to fix. The best way to do this is to use a utility knife to uncover the surface of the nail’s head. After you do this, remove the nail. Now replace that nail with a drywall screw. Prevent this from happening again by deep setting the screw before you cover it with compound again.
Repairing Corner Beads
Drywall corners are normally covered with a piece of metal called a drywall bead. This metal piece has a bead at the edge, which is usually covered with compound so that it matches the angle of the drywall. Sometimes, when the corner is struck, pieces of compound will break off, creating an unsightly crack. This is dealt with best by using your drywall saw to cut a cross cut above and below the crack. Next, remove the metal and cover the place with compound, being careful to make sure that the entire area is covered evenly to match the level of the rest of the corner.
In the case of small holes in drywall, you can sometimes purchase commercial patches that are basically pieces of fiberglass tape that have a thin drywall layer on it that you simply cover the hole with, then use compound on it to cover it up. In the case of larger holes, however, you will need to cut a square or a rectangle around the hole to give you an area where you can apply a patch.
After you have opened this hole up, use a couple of boards on either side of the hold, inside the wall, to give your patch something to be attached to. Next, cut a piece of drywall that will fit the hole, then cover the seam around the patch with compound.
In all of the above instances, you will want to use sandpaper to finish the wall until it is smooth, then paint. You have just accomplished a professional looking drywall patch.