How About That Drywall Repair
Drywall is relatively simple to install and easy to repair. It’s also easy to repair badly, which can leave a lumpy mess that declares “shoddy” to anyone who enters the room.
It’s best to do a repair with three or four thin coats of compound–if possible leaving sanding for just the last coat. Also,the most important thing with a repair is to build the joint out wider than you would normally, The key is to leave a wide and very shallow slope on all sides, he says.
A drywall repair toolkit is simple. It consists of flexible knives in 3-, 6- and 8-in. widths, an inside-corner knife, a utility knife, a hammer, a screwdriver, a drywall saw and a drill. Some repairs also may require a hand sander, a hacksaw, a nail bar and a level. Chances are good that you already own these. As for materials, drywall compound, mesh tape, paper tape, drywall nails and screws take care of most repairs.
How to Repair Drywall After Electrical Work
Electricians cut through drywall to gain access to wires when running new wire or adding or removing receptacles, utility boxes and light switches. An electrician will often cut more drywall than needed to increase his workspace. After installing a receptacle, junction box or new light switch, the hole surrounding the new feature is larger and requires filling. Electricians fishing for wires in a wall generally drill smaller holes but may drill more than one leaving a several areas requiring repair.
- To repair large holes after removing switches, receptacles or boxes, cut a thin piece of wood 2 inches larger than the hole. Cut a piece of hardware cloth 1 inch bigger than the hole in all directions. Apply fast-drying construction adhesive to the center of the wood and affix the hardware cloth to the wood. Allow the adhesive to dry for five minutes.
- Thread a length of string through the hardware cloth and around the back of the wood so that you hold both ends of the string in your hand. Apply construction adhesive to each end of the wood and around the edges of the hardware cloth. Insert the wood and hardware cloth into the hole with the adhesive facing you. Position the wood in the center of the hole. Draw the string toward you so the wood and cloth adheres to the inside of the wall. Hold it in place until the adhesive sets, generally less than five minutes.
- Apply a layer of drywall compound with a putty knife over the hardware cloth and wood while keeping tension on the string. Do not cover the string; leave a 1/4 inch gap around it. Allow the drywall compound to set for one hour.
- Cut the string with a utility knife and fill in the hole with drywall compound. Let the drywall compound dry completely, typically two to three hours, and sand smooth with 120-grit sandpaper.
- To repair small holes drilled when fishing for wires, sand the surface of the hole with 120-grit sandpaper to make it smooth.
- Press drywall compound into the hole with a putty knife. Build it up so it sits just above the existing drywall surface.
- Allow the drywall compound to dry completely, usually two to three hours.
- Sand the repair smooth with 120-grit sandpaper.
- To repair overcuts on receptacles, light switches and boxes, apply drywall compound to the void space between the receptacle, switch or box. Press it in to coat the edges of the drywall and outside edges of the electrical box. Remove drywall compound from the inside edges of the utility box with a putty knife.
- Place drywall tape over the wet drywall compound, up to the edge of the electrical box and smooth it out with a flexible putty knife. Apply a layer of drywall compound over the tape. Allow the drywall compound to dry for one to two hours.
- Apply another layer of drywall compound over the dry compound and allow it to set for one to two hours. Apply a third layer and allow it to dry. Keep the layers thin so they adhere, set and dry properly.
- Sand the repair with 120-grit sandpaper so it sits flush with the existing wall.
What Is the Difference Between Drywall Mud & Interior Spackling Paste?
Hardware stores stock a variety of types of spackling paste for filling holes prior to painting, but in a pinch, you can always use drywall joint compound. The main difference between them is that spackling paste resists shrinking and is formulated primarily for filling smaller holes.
Types of Spackling Paste
The most lightweight spackling compound, which is made from vinyl, has virtually no mass and dries almost instantaneously. It’s the easiest product to use when filling holes in drywall left by nails and pins, but it doesn’t have enough bulk for holes larger than about 1/4 inch in diameter. Heavier spackling paste, made from acrylic, works well for filling these larger holes, but because of its weight, it dries more slowly and shrinks somewhat; you sometimes need more than one application.
Drywall Joint Compound
The main ingredient in joint compound — or mud — is gypsum, and it’s the product that you use for taping and finishing drywall seams. You can also use it to patch holes, although it takes longer to dry and shrinks more than spackling paste. One advantage of mud, however, is the ease with which you can sand it, and another is that you probably already have some around the house left over from your last remodeling project. You can use mud to fill any hole that you would fill with spackling paste
What are the Advantages of a Drywall Repair Kit?
Convenience is probably the most common reason for someone to opt to use a kit. If you’re not used to working with drywall, then you’re going to be able to get all of the tools you need in one shot and there’s instructions included. Some of the kits offer longer lasting backings that can cover some surprisingly large holes, metal screens are particularly good in this respect.
If you’ve never worked with drywall before, kits are a fantastic option.
If you have worked with drywall frequently, however, you probably have what you need lying around in the garage and the main advantage offered to you by using one is just that you don’t have to dig out a big bucket of compound or search for the tools in the garage.
Why is Drywall Repair Before Interior Painting Important?
If you’re thinking about delaying your drywall repair, or decide to paint over the damage, you take the risk of your top coat paint flaking off. The look of your home interior and completed paint job will also suffer from holes, cracks, and other aesthetic flaws.
Hiring a professional drywall repair service before interior painting is essential for these reasons and others:
- Repairing cracks, holes, or dents in your drywall will result in a smoother interior paint application that lasts. A smooth, fresh paint application performed by a professional painting company can enhance the entire look and feel of your home interior.
- Drywall repair leaves the elements outside where they belong. The most important function of your home’s drywall is that it keeps wind, moisture, pests, and insulation from entering your home. But when your drywall develops holes or cracks, these things can get inside your house.
- Cold or warm outdoor air exposure due to cracks and holes in drywall can negatively impact energy efficiency. This can leave you with larger electric and gas bills.