Patching Cracks in Wallboard

Oops! Your drywall has developed a crack in it. Never fear... with a little elbow grease and some patching materials, no one will every know there was a crack.

Various types of patching materials are available for patching drywall. These include adhesive and non-adhesive drywall tapes, fast drying patching compounds and drywall bandages.

Regardless of the type of patching materials you use, read the manufacturer's instructions carefully and follow each step as suggested. Some patching compounds dry quickly, while others require longer periods to dry.

Step 1: Clean the Crack

Be sure the cracked area to be patched is completely clean and dry. Remove all dirt from the area and clean out all cracks.Step 2: Plastering the Crack

Step 2: Plastering the Crack

Apply the patching plaster with a wide and flexible putty knife (Fig. 3). Apply the compound by working across the crack with strokes in both directions. This method is the best way to work the patching plaster into the crack.Step 3: Make Sure the Crack is Filled

Step 3: Make Sure the Crack is Filled

Force the patching material into the crack with strong, firm strokes (Fig. 4). Examine the crack after each stroke to ensure that enough material is applied at all points. The knife should bend with pressure as you draw it along the cracked area. Repeat the passes as often as necessary to force the material well into the cracked surface.Step 4: Scape Away Excess

Step 4: Scape Away Excess

Use the putty knife as a scraper to remove any surplus material (Fig. 5). Move it along the cracked area gently to scrape away the surplus material that was applied by the double strokes show in Fig. 3.

Oops! Your drywall has developed a crack in it. Never fear... with a little elbo

Step 5: Touching Up

You may want to dip the putty knife into water and make a final pass along the repaired area (Fig. 6). Touch up any areas that need more patching material.

Step 6: Dry and Sand

After the patched area has dried completely, sand and prime it to prepare for the finish you desire.