How to Patch and Paint Drywall

Answered by Jeffrey ~ March 8, 2010 ~ Comments

My son busted the drywall in our kitchen here in York. It was an accident, but it left a deep gouge and cracks. I need a contractor's advice to patch and paint it.

Donise, K. ~ York, Pennsylvania

Jeffrey Anderson

Hi Donise, Sheetrock is an easy surface to repair, which makes it a good wall surface when you have children. It sounds like your repairs are fairly minor, no large holes all the way through the drywall. The next time you are at a home improvement store, or a paint store, pick up a small container of drywall compound, or drywall mud as it is sometimes called. I know it can be purchased in as small as a quart container, and it may be available in smaller sizes as well. You don't need much. Also pick up some drywall tape, I usually use the paper type that is about 2 inches wide. Again, you won't need much, just enough to cover the cracks and gouges. You will also need a sanding block, and a 4-6 inch drywall knife, which is a flat blade attached to a handle, and is used for spreading the drywall mud. There should be a number of stores around York, Pennsylvania that carry these materials.

When you are ready to start, spread a thin coat of drywall mud over the cracks and gouge, filling the gouge with mud. Then lay a single piece of tape over the length of each crack, using the mud you have already applied to hold it in place. Do the same with the gouges. Then apply another thin coat of mud over the tape in each spot. Allow the mud to completely dry, usually around 24 hours, and then apply another thin coat of mud over every patch, but this time spread it out a little, about 6 inches to either side of the cracks and gouges.

After that mud dries, you apply a third thin coat of mud, again feathering it out away from the cracks and gouges. When the third coat dries, use the sanding block to sand your patches smooth. Take care not to tear into the drywall paper away from the patches. Dust everything off, and apply your first coat of paint. If the first coat of paint reveals any further work you may need to do with the repairs, use a little drywall mud to do some touch up after the paint has dried. Sand lightly again, and repaint. If you need the repairs to be done quickly, there is quick drying drywall mud available.

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