How to Fix a Hole in a Wall
Homeowner horror show. Here are the deets: I was trying to hang my new Samsung flat screen HDTV in my apartment bedroom and long story short, ended up putting a huge hole in the wall. (Yep...my bad...I knew I should have asked my brother to install it.) Immediate fear of fines and fights with my landlord set in. After a glass of wine, I calmed down and spent the next few hours devouring drywall repair YouTube tutorials. A quick trip to Home Depot and I was able to mend it. But the horror of seeing the studs through the hole in my wall was enough for me to learn a lesson: holes are a repair task that every homeowner should learn how to deal with.
- Doorknob-sized and similarly small-but-not-tiny holes require you to place the self-adhesive patch from a hardware-store kit over the hole, and then cover it with lightweight joint compound (a putty-like substance), using a drywall knife to spread it evenly. Let everything dry.
- Medium-width holes (less than 6 inches in area) require a "California Patch:" an entirely new square of drywall 2 inches larger and wider than the area being repaired. Essentially, you cut out some of the drywall immediately surrounding the hole and replace it with the new square, affixing two coats of joint compound to ensure it stays attached.
- For large holes, you also cut out the drywall on the hole's perimeter with the goal of eventually placing new drywall over the whole square area, but you add wooden furring strips to the vertical sides of the square and attach the patch to them with screws.
- Start by removing the wood molding from the borders of the damaged panel, as well as the wooden strips and the nails that were holding it in place.
- After applying a thin layer of appropriate adhesive, set a new piece of paneling in the cut-out space.
- Nail it in place and replace the wood strips and molding.