Help! How Do You Seal Damaged Drywall?

by Connor Pena

Drywall is thicker than most people believe unless you are a professional technician. The drywall side that is away from the room is made to resist water in its finishing compounds. The secret is to act fast when you observe the water damage. The process is not as difficult as it sounds if you have drywall experience. If not, it might be a good idea to hire a professional.

Check the Wall

You will need to remove the baseboard and poke holes to see if the drywall is wet. Soft texture means it is wet. The interior of the wall can also be checked with a probing moisture meter. A larger hole can be made to see if the moisture is on the studs.

Begin by cutting a 2' section and remove any insulation, especially if the wall has been wet for a number of days. It is noted that the R-value is removed, which is the capacity the insulation has to resist the flow of heat in the wall. The wet insulation is also breeding ground for mold. If mold is present, it is essential to have a professional remove it without spreading mold spores throughout your home.

Cut the Paper

You can make a blister-free application if you have properly prepared the wall. Use a razor knife to peel away the paper that has peeled because of moisture. You must have a crisp/cut line before proceeding.

Prepare the Area

Coating the brown inner core of the paper with an oil-based sealer is the first step. This should dry quickly. You can brush on white or clear shellac or a can of primer. However, don't use any products to seal the area that contains water. Oil-based paint can also be used. Be sure to cover all edges including the edges of the drywall paper.

Apply Drywall Compound

Once the sealer is completely dry, apply a thin layer of regular drywall compound. You can apply two coats in under 30 minutes if you use a fast-setting compound. If you use a topping compound purchased in a bucket, the surface will be much smoother.

It is advisable to mix the compounds thoroughly and make it a bit thinner to help prevent bubbles. If you are using a chemically-hardened product, you should wait 24 hours before a second coat is applied. This will prevent cracking. You don't need to sand between each coat, but be sure to vacuum away all of the dust before you paint the area.

The main point is to go slowly and be sure you have removed all of the wet materials before you begin. You also want the area completely dry before you begin the process of sealing the damaged drywall. These suggestions should give you a smooth surface and provide you with a nice finished product that can last for many years until your next paint job.

For more information, contact professionals like Mike's Drywall Service Inc.