I do a lot of drywall work with my construction company. You would think most of it would be from room additions or new construction where I actually install whole sheets of drywall to cover walls and ceilings. But you’d be wrong. The majority of drywall repairs that I have to perform are from other people’s repairs. Patches!
Every so often, a homeowner takes it upon themselves to repair a hole, only to cover it with globs of joint compound that make it look more like the surface of the moon than a smooth and clean repair. Before you dare fill a single hole in your wall or ceiling, read this guide to patching holes in drywall and you’ll be sure to get a seamless patch in your drywall every time.
Little picture nails, thumbtacks and other small pointed objects can all damage drywall. If you’ve ever painted a wall that has multiple holes, you’ll notice the paint accumulates in the hole, runs out and leaves a visible hole with a paint run just below it. Prior to painting, fill all pinholes with a small smear of plain white toothpaste. Allow it to paste up, and then wipe away the excess with a moist washcloth, repeat, then paint.
Door Knob Holes
In some cases, doorknob holes are an ongoing repair job. Do yourself a favor: before you fix the hole; fix the door first. Place a trim bumper or hinge bumper on the door so the handle doesn’t make a hole any more.
To fix a hole from a doorknob, you can cut a small circle the size of the doorknob on the back side of a scrap piece of drywall three times the size of the hole. On the obverse side with the white paper (the front of the drywall) cut a large square. Now you can insert the drywall “plug” into the hole and use the paper on the face of the drywall to cover the hole completely. Use successive coats of joint compound to adhere the paper and cover and lines. Use sandpaper to knock down any lines or humps and fill any holes with more joint compound until a seamless edge is created.
In some cases, the plug method won’t work. You’ll need to cut a small square of drywall out of the hole big enough for a 2×4 to fit into. Cut a piece of 2×4 longer than the hole and attach a screw partway in the center of the 2×4. Use the screw to hold the 2×4 as you insert it into the hole. Pull it tight against the back of the drywall and have another friend screw the 2×4 to the drywall on both sides of the hole. You now have a board you can screw or glue the repair square of drywall to the existing wall with. Finish as described above until a smooth finish is achieved.
Most walls have a texture to remove the minor blemishes left behind when finishing drywall. The most common texture is called orange peel. To get an orange peel texture, buy an aerosol spray can of texture from a hardware store or construction supply company. Use a scrap piece of drywall to test your texture pattern before committing to the real deal.
More Great Home Improvement Articles from Eric Brennan
Four Steps to a Floating Floor
Installing a Ceiling Fan
Solving Flat Roofing Problems