West Bloomfield Painters

How to Repair Drywall, Drywall Repair Tips and Techniques, West Bloomfield

West Bloomfield Drywall Repair Company (248) 787-0963
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Step by step instructions of How to Repair Drywall:
Unfortunately damaged drywall is a common problem that most people run into 
several times throughout life.

Here's the easiest way to achieve repairing a hole in your drywall.
Patching drywall looks simple, but a truly seamless repair takes considerable skill and care. Any irregularities due to excess compound, fasteners, tears in the drywall covering, or uneven joints can show up when it's too late, after you paint.

Below I will explain and show you a foolproof method for drywall repair that's as close to perfect as possible.
First here is a list of the tools and materials you’re going to need.

Tools and Supplies:
- Pencil
- Carpenter's square
- Drywall saw
- Drywall tape
- Drywall compound                                                                                                              
- Mud pan                                                                                                                                                     - 6”  -Mud knife                                                                                                                                             - 10” Mud Knife                                                                                                                                           - 12” Mud knife                                                                                                                                            - 120-grit sandpaper
- Sanding block
- Very sharp utility knife
- Drill
- Drywall screws
- 1 x 4 pieces of scrap wood (While explaining the repairs I will be calling these pieces of wood “nailers”)
- Vacuum                                                                                                                                                      - Drop cloth                                                                                                      
- Plastic to cover any close by furniture

1.  Take a new piece of drywall and cut out a patch that’s at least a few inches bigger in each direction then the hole that you’re repairing.

You can pick up a 2' x 2' piece of drywall at your local home improvement store; it'll be large enough for most repairs but won't leave behind a lot of unused drywall material. 

Be sure it's the same thickness as the drywall you're patching. Do to fire codes most drywall is 1/2" thick in walls, 5/8” thick in ceilings and in the wall attached to the garage if you have an attached garage to your house.  It’s unusual but once in a while you might run into 3/8" thick drywall. If you're not sure, remove a switch plate from somewhere on the wall to measure the thickness of the wall.

2.      To ensure a tight-fitting patch, use the patch itself as a template.  Place the new piece of drywall that you cut over the damaged area of the wall and trace the shape of it.

Your patch should be at least a couple of inches bigger than the damage in all directions. Hold the new piece of drywall over the area that you’re going to fix and trace it with a pencil.

3.      Check to see if there’s any electrical wire or other obstructions before cutting 
out the damaged areas.

Carefully cut away the damaged area along the lines you have traced using a drywall saw.  If you come across any studs in the wall just angle the drywall saw and cut as much of the drywall as you can from each side of the stud along your line.  Next remove the old drywall that you just cut, make sure there are no pieces of drywall still stuck to any wood studs, if so then remove it using a 5 in 1 painters tool or a flat head screw driver.

4.  Cut and attach wooden “nailers” behind the open drywall.
Install nailers using drywall screws and a drill.

Cut two nailers (pieces of wood) from a scrap piece of 1 x 4 pine. Using nailers eliminates the needs to find wall studs for attaching the patch, and gives you something to securely attach your new piece of drywall to. The nailers should be a few inches longer than the opening on top and bottom. Mount the nailers to the inside of the wall with a drill and drywall screws.  Hold and brace the wood where you want it while drilling the screws through the drywall and into the wood, as shown in the picture.
Before installing your new piece of drywall, use a pencil, not a pen to mark where the center of the wood is on the wall close to the cut out area, this is so you know where to place your screws when you install the new piece drywall for your patch.  Don’t worry, the mud you apply will cover the pencil mark.

5.   Install the patch by fastening it to the nailers with drywall screws.
Make sure to slightly sink the head of your screws into the drywall.  This makes it easier to cover them with the coats of mud that you’re about to apply over it.

 6.   Apply drywall tape over the drywall seams.
If you’re not experienced with applying mud to drywall then I would suggest using self-adhering drywall tape, as shown in the above picture.  Self-adhering nylon mesh tape makes taping a bit easier than using paper tape. 
Apply your mesh tape over the patch joints as shown.  Make sure that you apply the tape smoothly and securely with no wrinkles in it.  Use a sharp blade to prevent ragged tears when cutting the tape to length.
7.  Mix and apply drywall compound over the tape.  This is called the bed coat.
Apply a thin coat of drywall compound over the mesh tape. 
Thoroughly mix the drywall compound for a few minutes.  Next, apply a coat of compound over the mesh tape. Make sure you apply it as smooth as possible and just thick enough to cover the ridges of the mesh tape.  

Allow compound to completely dry between coats. The compound will turn bright white when dry, usually after 24 hours.  Once dry, use a clean 6 in mudding knife to "knock down" any ridges or bubbles.

8.  Apply your 2nd coat of mud.  This coat is called a skim coat. 
 Apply a second, wider, coat using a 10" mudding knife. Feather the edges of the joints so they appear flat. Once dry, scrape the surface to remove burrs and high spots  

9.  Apply the final coat also called the finish coat. 

     Apply your third coat, again wider than your previous coat of mud using a 12" or 16" mud knife and using the same techniques as explained before, applying it even, smooth and feathering out the edges.

10.  Sand your patch.
Gently sand the dried mud until it’s all smooth and even.  Now you’re finished and ready to prime and repaint the wall!

We hope this has been some helpful tips for you in your quest to repair your dry wall!

If you have any questions about how to repair drywall or if you rather have a professional handle any of your dry wall repairs, feel free to call us at  (248) 787-0963 

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