Refreshing your interior with a new coat of paint is a relatively simple task, especially if the drywall is in good condition. However, if the drywall shows signs of damage, repairing it before the actual painting begins is critical to getting professional results.
What Is Drywall?
The interiors of most homes and many commercial buildings are covered with gypsum wallboard, which is commonly known as drywall or sheetrock. Drywall is easily damaged through the natural course of everyday living. Holes, cracks, dents, and peeling joint tape are unsightly drywall imperfections that require repair.
The Drywall Repair Process
Proper drywall repair and preparation before painting is critically important for a professional-looking paint job. If you’ve never completed a drywall repair project and don’t feel comfortable about tackling the repairs yourself, hire a professional painter who is qualified in the skill to take care of all of your drywall repair and painting needs.
There are some required steps and materials for repairing drywall several drywall. Below are some suggestions on what you’ll need and how to accomplish the repairs. (NOTE: If you don’t have the tools, the hole requires new drywall replacement, or if the entire drywall sheet needs to be replaced, hiring a professional is the best option.)
1. Tools and Materials Needed
The size of the hole or crack will determine what method of repair you’ll use. You may not need all of these tools and materials to fix your drywall. But they are good to have on hand to be prepared for anything before you paint.
- Putty knife
- Carpenter’s knife
- Drywall saw
- Broad knife
- Dust mask
- Drywall tape, patch kit, and screws
- Elastomeric Filler
- Furring strips
2. Small Repairs
Smaller drywall imperfections can be filled with drywall compounds or spackles. Bigger holes need to be filled using a patch kit or a custom-cut piece of drywall to fill the hole. For best results, have a paint professional do the bigger patching jobs, because it is sometimes difficult to achieve a clean, smooth repair.
If you see long tiny cracks on the ceiling or walls, they will eventually grow longer and wider if left unattended. This is caused by the expansion and contraction of wooden studs that the drywall is attached to. Humidity and changes in temperature can make these studs bend, causing cracks in the drywall.
Elastomeric filler is like a cross between spackle and caulk. It can be applied with a putty knife to fill the crack and it dries to form a paintable surface. The filled area needs to be primed before paint is applied.
Nail heads can bulge through drywall leading to cracks in the surface. This is a result of the movement of the drywall.
To repair these spots, you can use a drywall screw to tighten the drywall back against the wooden studs. Then either pull out the nail or pound it back in and use a drywall patch kit to fill the holes. Once it is dry, sand it until smooth and then paint over it.
To prevent uneven surfaces, sanding gets the job done. You always want a clean smooth surface to paint on. Random areas can appear with a bumpy texture on the walls. The unevenness can be caused by poor installation of the drywall or a bad paint job.
Sand the area carefully and then fill it to create a smooth surface. Remember to wear a dust mask and remove all dust before applying primer and paint. It’s also a good idea to spread a drop cloth on the floor where you’re sanding to make the clean-up easier.
Common Drywall Problems
While a small crack or hole can be repaired in just a few minutes, extensive drywall repair requires knowledge and considerable effort. Here are some common drywall problems that can occur.
Water damage. If you have experienced extensive water damage, the best solution is to replace the entire drywall sheet. If the structure of the wall hasn't been compromised, you can look into drywall repair techniques.
Before attempting to repair drywall, finding and fixing the source of the damage is important to prevent the problem from recurring. Once the necessary repairs have been made, allow the drywall to dry completely, and sand down any bumps with a fine-grit sandpaper.
Holes. To repair holes in drywall, choose a quality spackling compound for small holes and a joint compound for larger holes. You can also use self-adhesive drywall patches to fix holes up to 6 inches in diameter. If the wall has multiple holes in it, it’s best to replace the damaged section or the entire sheet.
Peeling Drywall Tape. Tape bubbling or peeling away from the wall surface is another common drywall problem. This happens when the tape that covers the seams between sheets of drywall comes loose, leaving visible cracks. It may even peel completely off the wall.
Poor installation or water leakage could be the culprit for this issue. Use a knife to cut around the section of loose tape. Remove the tape and fill the hole with a joint compound. Apply a new strip of tape and cover it with a thin layer of joint compound.
Tips for Selecting Drywall Repair Painters
If you aren’t comfortable with or equipped to do the repairs yourself, you should hire a professional who is skilled in drywall repair. Choosing the best drywall repair company will ensure a good result when looking to repaint your home.
A reputable professional drywall repair and paint contractor will not only fix the damages but will also provide a quality paint job once the drywall has dried and been sanded. They will give you the best possible solution to prevent any potential issues.
How can you locate a reliable paint contractor who also repairs drywall? Below is a guide on how to choose the best drywall repair service that will deliver a top-quality paint finish at an affordable cost.
Evaluate the Size of the Project
The amount of damage will determine the estimated cost of the repairs. This information will be required by a professional before they give you plans and an estimate on how to proceed. Most reputable companies will provide a free estimate based on their assessment of the damage and extent of work needed.
Word of mouth is one great way to find reputable companies. Your family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues can also be great sources of information. But you should also follow up those references with your own research.
Do Your Research
Check out the company’s reviews. Angie’s List, HomeAdvisor, and Yelp are popular consumer websites for good drywall repair and paint contractors. Check the reviews online and on their website. Pay attention to good and bad reviews that mention the quality of their services, timeliness, customer service, and communication. You can also access the quality of service of a company through the Better Business Bureau.
Check for Licensing and Insurance
Checking a company’s license is one important way to locate the right drywall repair company. Depending on the state and industry, the requirement to possess valid licenses and permits varies.
Be sure to ask your contractor for their licensing details and double-check their legitimacy with the appropriate licensing department. You want to be protected from rogue and incompetent contractors.
Be sure to consider insurance coverage when searching for a professional paint or drywall repair company. Since these jobs can be risky, it’s best to choose a contractor that has liability insurance as well as a worker’s compensation policy in case of an accident and bodily injuries to keep you and your finances safe.
Years of Experience in the Industry
The level of experience a paint and drywall repair contractor has in the industry is important to consider when hiring. Proper knowledge and expertise is required with drywall repair, just like with other specialized jobs.
Request to view the contractor’s portfolio to create a track record and find out if they’ve performed a similar drywall repair and paint project. A professional that has a good reputation will be more than willing to provide all the required details of their services. They’ll even offer ideas and recommendations for your project.
A professional and knowledgeable company will have no problem giving you an estimate when you request it. In fact, most will offer complimentary, no obligation estimates. After obtaining several estimates, make a detailed comparison of the timeframe of the job, price, materials, and more.
Never base your selection on price alone. The old adage, “You get what you pay for” is usually true. Consider experience, quality, and reputation as well.
If you conduct your research and obtain references, you should have no problem avoiding any potential scam operations. Do not proceed with any drywall repair or paint company that refuses to issue a written contract that contains the full details of the project.
Go with the Drywall Repair and Painting Professionals
If you want your walls to look fantastic, it is best to hire a professional painter. The Painting Pros always does proper surface prep, including repairing drywall before we apply any paint. That means we routinely fill cracks, repair holes, caulk edges, and re-tape seams.
Contact us today for a free estimate.