Gypsum Wallboard Repair

There are many different things, which can cause your gypsum wallboard to need to be repaired. The primary use of a gypsum wallboard is as a backing for various wall coverings. This includes wallpaper, paneling, wall treatments, tile, and fabric. Though gypsum wallboards are fairly durable, it is logical that over time you will have to repair dents, holes, or popped nails.

The typical wallboard is composed of a gypsum core. This core is fire-resistant and is covered on both sides by paper. Gypsum wallboards can be used in various locations. They sometimes have water-resistant abilities in order to be placed in bathrooms and other areas where they might get wet, but these wallboards are specifically bought to be able to endure the conditions of the bathroom with minimal need for repairs.

The key to repairing a gypsum wallboard is making sure it blends in with the surrounding area. You want it to look as though there was no need for repair at all, and if you have never done this before you might be puzzled about how to complete such a task.

How to Repair Dents

The repair of a dent in your gypsum wallboard should not be too difficult. Depending on the extent of the dent, you may have the problem fixed within a day. The first thing you need to do when repairing a dent is to sand the wallboard where the dent is located. An all-purpose joint compound should be used to fill in the dent so it is smooth with the wallboard.

You should let the joint compound dry in layers before applying a second coating of the joint compound. This should be done layer by layer until the area is completely filled in. Once the dent is filled, smooth the area down by sanding over it. Make sure not to sand it until it is dry. Once it is sanded the gypsum wallboard can be primed and painted.

How to Repair Holes

Depending on the size of the hole, the gypsum wallboard repair may be a few steps, or may be extensive. As logic would speak, the smaller the hole, the easier the repair is going to be.

Small Holes

For small holes, make sure the hole is clean. You may have to brush particles out of the hole. Once the hole is clean, lightly dampen it. You will need patching plaster or another type of spackling compound. Using a putty knife, the hole can be filled with the filler of choice. Once the filler has dried, sand down the surface to ensure it is smooth and prime the wallboard.

Large Holes

Repairing bigger holes can be a bit trickier. First, the part of the gypsum wallboard that needs to be repaired must be cut out in a section. Identify where the wall studs are and use a utility knife to cut out the damaged section. Then pry the piece out using a prybar.

You will want to be careful when removing and attaching the new gypsum wallboard. In order to prevent electrocution from wires behind the wall, shut off power in the room before installation. You should also be careful of nails, which may be placed in the damaged section. They could fall out easily as the section is being removed.

Using a new section of the wallboard of the same consistency, tape and join the new section to the larger section. The edges of this section should be smoothed out prior to being placed in the gap. Nail the piece in place at the wall studs and smear joint compound (you can get water-resistant compound if necessary) on the joints in a 45-degree angle. You can do this with a taping knife.

The taped edges should be placed against the joints and the gypsum wallboard section should be pressed down. During the repair process, you will want to remove excess compound seeping out of the edges with a knife. The tape should be covered with a thin layer of compound and the wall should sit and dry for at least a day.

Once the compound has dried, using a wet sponge, dampen the compound and then use sand paper (wet sanding) to smooth out the imperfections. Be careful when sanding so you do not scratch the board up. Two more coats of compound should be applied using a taping knife, and the process of wet sanding should be repeated once the compound has dried each time.

Once the newly repaired gypsum wallboard is completely dry, a coat of paint or varnish (if you are using wallpaper) should be applied over the entire board.

Gypsum wallboard repair does not have to be difficult. With a little bit of knowledge and the necessary tools, you can have your wallboard repaired in no time.

See Also:

Gypsum Wallboard Guide

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