Drywall Repairs: A Key Element in Interior Painting

Painting the walls is one of the highlights of home renovation projects. It’s also more fun and doable compared to the other tasks in your home improvement to-do list. For this reason, some homeowners do their interior painting without consulting a professional. Does this approach work? The simple answer is yes, but only if you have a perfectly polished drywall.

The damaged drywall

Drywalls are not immune to damage. Even the smoothest and most durable drywalls from contractors such as Longhill Contracting could get damaged. Aside from nailing the walls to display pictures and decors, several factors may affect the condition of your drywall. First, there are uncontrollable changes in humidity and temperature which may cause cracks to form and worsen, unnoticed, over time. There is also the possibility of damages due to water leaks. This usually happens when a leak behind your drywall goes undetected for long periods.

Why fix your drywall before painting your interiors?

Experts recommend getting your drywall repaired before painting your interiors. The most obvious reason is aesthetics. If you go straight to painting your interiors without fixing the holes and blemishes in your drywalls, the paint could make the imperfections in your walls more obvious. Also, holes and cracks make space for pests and could allow construction residue to get inside your home. Finally, the damaged drywall allows heat or air conditioning to escape through tiny holes and cracks. The greater the damage, the bigger your loss in energy savings.

Repairing your dry walls

Inspect your drywalls before painting. Make sure it’s in good condition. Take note of the damages and how extensive they are. Remember, the process for repairing small cracks and holes is different from the process for repairing large holes. The former simply requires some basic patching and sanding. The latter could be a bit more complex.

How to repair large holes in your drywall

Living room interior

Drywall holes that are more than six inches in size are categorized as a large drywall hole. Before fixing extensive damages in your drywalls, remember to use protection. One of the most trusted names in home renovation recommends wearing a dust mask and using gloves when sanding drywall compounds. The dust mask keeps fine particles of drywall compound from entering your lungs, while the gloves keep your hands from drying out when it comes to contact with gypsum dust.

Once you have your protective gear, make sure you have all the materials you need for the repair. Here are the things you need to fix your drywall and paint your interiors:

  • Framing square
  • Drywall saw
  • Scrap wood or plywood strips
  • Tape measure
  • Wood saw
  • Piece of drywall
  • Drywall screws
  • Drill with a screwdriver bit
  • Self-adhesive mesh drywall joint tape
  • Utility knife
  • Drywall joint compound
  • 6-inch drywall knife
  • 150-grit sanding sponge
  • Rag
  • Drywall spray texture (optional)
  • Primer and paint
  • Paintbrush

Drywall repair: A step-by-step guide

Step #1: Cut and clean the damaged drywall

Mark the damage with a pencil. Cut out the damaged area and clean the edges using your utility knife.

Step #2: Cut the patch

Measure the damaged drywall you previously cut. Use these measurements on a panel that has the same type and thickness as your damaged drywall.

Step #3: Cut and secure the cleats

Cut the cleats to fit the edges of the opening. If possible, make the cleats two to three inches longer than the opening. After cutting, secure the cleats with several screws.

Step #4: Fit the Patch

Position the patch into the opening. Fit the patch and drive drywall screws through it. Start in the middle, then work your way through the sides.

Step #5: Apply the tape

Measure the length of the edge seam, then cut a piece of fiberglass. Make sure to add a few extra inches of tape. Press the tape in place over the cracks until the seams are completely covered.

Step #6: Finish off

Apply some joint compound and spread it over the tape. Allow the area to dry completely, then repeat the process of feathering the edges. Sand until smooth once dried.

The process of repairing drywalls is time-consuming. It also requires a lot of hard work. If you have no prior experience repairing drywalls, especially those with extensive damages, it might be best to leave this matter to an expert.  Drywall specialists know the techniques of drywall repairs better than anyone.

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