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MrBill_DIY 07-22-2008 09:44 PM

Can Sagging Ceiling Wallboard Be Straightened?
My father's house had a water leak, which damaged the ceiling wallboard and seems to have caused it to sag down from the joists about 1/2" around the damaged section. The resulting hole is about three feet long by one foot wide. I'm wondering what would happen if I just screwed the wallboard back up into the joists to remove the 1/2" bowing, and then patched the hole with drywall, instead of ripping out huge sections of wallboard and making the hole even bigger.

By the way, does ceiling wallboard ever just sag because of old age and not water damage? This is a 50-year-old house, and most 50-year-olds sag in places, don't they? :)

Termite 07-22-2008 10:11 PM

If the wallboard has endured direct water contact, it is shot. It must be replaced, and there's no other way to do it in my opinion. The water just does too much damage to the structure of the product, and it isn't made to take it. Adding more screws might help, but is a band-aid fix at best. Hopefully the source of the leak is fixed!

Applying drywall mud to level out the dips won't work, because the patch is only as solid as the substrate.

AtlanticWBConst. 07-23-2008 05:13 AM

As stated. Remove the bowed section.

Start by marking it out with pencil. Then take a T-square, or framign square and measure out a perfect rectangle or square of the section. (By cutting out a square or rect. section, replacement will be easier to cut and insert)

Use strapping to screw into the hole, and overlap to the surrounding sheetrock that is left.

Attach using 1-1/4" Course thread drywall screws. Insert and screw off the new patch.

Tape and coat.

Tips: The make the patch less visible, you have to really spread out the coats to blend it into the surrounding surfaces. Apply a stain-kill over the areas, prior to repainting, to cover any water stains, either visible or not.

Good Luck.

buletbob 07-23-2008 09:14 AM

The correct way is disscribed by the KCTIRMITE & ATLANTIC I need not say more. GOOD LUCK:thumbsup:

bjbatlanta 07-23-2008 01:42 PM

I agree cutting out and replacing is best in the case of water damage. Drywall CAN sag over time on it's own. An obvious place you can see this is in an open carport of an older house. Humidity and moisture will sag the drywall between the joists. This can also happen indoors and is most common where joists are on 24" centers. Add the weight of texture (stipple or spray) and the problem is often worse. It IS possible SOMETIMES to push up and re-nail/screw sagged drywall where nails have "popped" or glue has failed. The main problem usually is when there is blown insulation above the ceiling. It gets between the rock and the ceiling joist and won't allow you to push the rock up tight to the framing member.

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