Doing your own Drywall Repairs

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Alright, time to put the boots on the ground. Whether one of your children went through the drywall, you bumped into it with a piece of furniture or the movers were careless, the result is the same. You now have a hole in your drywall. No worries however, drywall / Gypsum board is cheap, right? Right! But the work is very skilled.

What do we mean by that? Well, the work itself isn’t very tough, but it requires either a lot of experience and practice or a lot of patience. Why do we say this? Well, with a lot of patience you can do it yourself. But a word of caution here. Once you’ve cleaned it all up and painted it, be prepared to start all over again once the morning or evening sunlight hits that patch from a different angle. You may become extremely frustrated with what different light does to your patch. We understand. Builders understand that very well. That’s why they implanted the use of stipple (popcorn) ceilings, to hide these light tricks caused by different light settings.

If you have a lot of time and patience on your hands, this article will give you a light guidance on how to execute the work. Otherwise This is a problem Drywall Repair companies such as PatchBoyz handles for home owners every day.

Drywall Repairs

Why don’t we start with a bit of orientation first, shall we? Let’s talk about materials needed/

Gyprock / Drywall / Gypsum board

This is all the same thing. It’s important to note the thickness of your wall. Usually ½” drywall is used. Sometimes you’ll see basements with ¼” drywall. Party walls are usually 5/8”. A party wall is a wall or ceiling between 2 legally separated dwellings. The purpose of this thicker drywall is to create a thicker and stronger barrier to slow down the spread of a fire, allowing residents to escape the building and giving firefighters a fighting chance at saving the building.

Drywall compound

You have several different types of mud / drywall compound. CGC probably being one of the most common brands used in north America. This compound comes in different versions. You have the regular multi-purpose, the dust-reducing as well as machine muds which are lighter in weight. There are other types of muds with higher glue contents and wonderful features but that’s not important to us right now.

Drywall tape

The easiest to work with will be paper tape. Also on the menu is fiber tape or even fibafuse (brand name) fiberglass self-levelling sheets. Paper tape is what we’ll go with for the purpose of this article.



-Drywall knife & Drywall saw



-2 pales (if the mud doesn’t already come in one)



-Philips bit

-Drywall (of the right size)

-Low profile wood (to use as backing)

-Straight edge or level

Great. Now that you have all the supplies, let’s get started.

  1. Cut your drywall hole into a perfect square

Use your straight edge to mark straight lines forming a square. The more perfect the square, the easier placing a new piece of drywall into the hole will be. Now use the drywall saw to cut the drywall according the lines drawn. (If you didn’t buy a drywall saw, you can still do it with just a knife. This is how: Now, using the drywall knife, score the lines over the pencil marks. Repeat process until piece can be taken out.)

  1. Create a a matching piece of drywall.

Using the same process as above (with the knife), cut a matching square in new drywall.

  1. Install backing

Add wood backing behind where the new piece of drywall will go. Hold it behind the wall with one hand and fasten the wall to the piece of wood behind with the other hand. Make sure the wood backing will prevent the new piece of drywall from falling into your hole.

  1. Secure drywall

Install the drywall with screws going into the backing

  1. Tape

Prefill any gaps between the new drywall and existing wall with mud. Now place a 4” strip of mud over all the joints/ You can now apply your tape to those joints. Tape should overlap as little as possible. Any overlaps should have mud between them to prevent bubbling. Allow this to dry and harden.

  1. Apply 3 coats of mud

It is now time to apply 3 coats of mud to the entire patch, not just the tape. Even if the patch is 9 square feet. You will still cover the entire patch using the hoc and trowel.

  1. Sanding

Now that the patch is dry, it’s time to sand. Using a sanding sponge made for drywall from any hardware store is the best solution. Using flat paper will hurt your hands and gauge the drywall. You also may have the wrong grit.

  1. Prime & Paint

You’re now ready to prime and paint.

  1. Patience

Now, before you clean up, consider leaving everything there and monitoring that patch over the next 48 hours to see how the light hits your patch. If you live in a region that doesn’t get much sun light in the winter, consider waiting until you can see the patch in those sunny conditions before tearing up your patch.

Repeat steps 7 through 9 if needed. You may need to feather your patch more if the sun reveals any imperfections.

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