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afabco 11-12-2008 01:25 AM

patching painted drywall newb question
While I've been working I've made some holes in the drywall to make the work easier. I was able to make clean cuts so most of the pieces I've taken out can go back where they were. The previous owner had painted the interior a Dutch Boy latex white before she put it on the market. Do I need to do any prep to this painted surface before I do the mudding and taping? If so, what should I do? Thanks in advance!

slickshift 11-12-2008 05:30 PM

To insure proper adhesion with repairs, it's best to prime the painted areas before patching
Not always required per say (especially with flat paint), but as you'll have to prime the patch anyway, it's a small step to make sure it won't fail

Nestor_Kelebay 11-12-2008 06:58 PM


Whenever I make a hole in drywall, I cut all the way out the nearest studs on each side. Then I'll predrill, countersink and install pieces of spruce 2X2 against each stud with 3 inch long drywall screws. Then I'll drywall screw the drywall patch to the 2X2's.

If you haven't done that, and there is nothing to attach your repair patch to, then you either have to enlarge the hole, OR drywall screw a wooden board across the hole (fastened to the back side of the drywall with drywall screws driven into the front of the drywall). That way you have something to fasten the repair patch to.

To get a nice smooth mound of drywall mud over your seams, you should purchase something called a "curved trowel". It looks just like a regular flat trowel unless you know what to look for. If you sight along the edge of a curved trowel, you'll notice that it's actually curved so that if you set it down on a flat surface, the trowel will arch up in the middle by about 1/8 inch. Since you hold the trowel at a comfortable angle to the wall, it's shape will allow you to spread a perfectly symmetrical mound of joint compound over a joint so that it's about 1/16 of an inch thick in the middle. This is more than enough to bury fiberglass mesh drywall tape in, but not enough to cast a shadow on the wall, even with wall mounted light fixtures.

Curved trowels are what drywallers will use on butt joints where you don't have a contoured edge on both sides of the joint to bury the drywall tape in.

I'm not sure what Slickshift meant about priming. I presume he was suggesting priming the painted drywall around the hole to ensure the joint compound sticks well (to that primer) around the hole. I think that's a good idea, or it should help the joint compound stick a bit better. I think another option would be to simply mix a little white wood glue into your first coat of drywall joint compound to make it a bit stickier so that it'll stick better to a smoother surface. I buy my joint compound by the bag, and I regularily add various amounts of diluted white wood glue to it to make it stick better and dry harder, or I add much less so that it dries softer so that it's easier to sand smooth. Regardless of what you do, that paint around the hole has to be clean for anything to stick well to it, joint compound or primer.

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