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Drywall repair of a doorknob hole

QuestionHow should I repair a hole in a drywall caused by a doorknob?

AnswerCut a piece of wood (1/2" or 3/4" plywood or pine) 3" by 8" long (if the hole has been cut roughly 4" by 4") to be used as backing. Mark a line 2" in on both ends of the wood, and insert a 1 5/8" drywall screw about half an inch into the center of the wood to serve as a handle.

1. Install panel adhesive on the 2" areas marked on both ends. Before it dries, carefully insert the piece of wood into the hole and pull on the center screw to firmly mount the slat against the backside of the existing drywall.

2. Install four drywall screws, two on each end, through the drywall and into the wood. Be sure to countersink the screws, but be careful not to break the paper surface of the drywall. For those who are intimidated by countersinking, a drywall screw setter, THE INDENTER, allows you to automatically set a screw at the proper depth. This Phillip bit retails for under $2.50 and will fit any screw gun or drill. Remove the center (handle) screw at this time.

3. Cut a piece of drywall (sheetrock) about 1/8" smaller on all four sides than the actual size of the area to be patched.

4. Spread panel adhesive on the backside of the drywall patch and press it into the hole firmly against the wood slat. If you wish, you may install a couple of screws. Once again, countersink them.

5. If you have a textured wall, sand off the texture about 10" around all four sides of the newly patched area.

6. With a 5" drywall taping knife, spread joint compound over the seams and press joint tape into the compound, centering it over the joint. Draw the knife firmly along the joint to lightly embed the tape. Be sure there is sufficient compound under the tape to prevent it from blistering or lifting.

7. Remove any excess compound from the edge and allow it to dry overnight.

8.Now, with an 8" taping knife, spread finish compound over the entire area. Feather the edge of the compound out about 7" to 8" beyond the first coat. Let it dry overnight.

9. If your surface is rough, that?s OK. You can lightly sand the surface with 80-grit sandpaper, but be careful to not sand off too much of the compound so you damage the tape or the surface of the existing wall. With smaller holes, I personally prefer to sand in a circular motion.

10. Now you are ready for your third (and final) coat of finish compound. Using the same 8" knife, feather the edge of the compound out about 7" to 8" from the center of the second coat for a total width of 14" to 16". Once the compound has been applied, you may wish to use an 18" or 20" finishing knife to go over the entire area in one pass. You can purchase these knives from your local drywall company.

11. It's OK to apply more than three coats of compound. Be sure the coats are thin and allow the compound to dry overnight between coats. Sand your final coat with 100-grit sandpaper. If you get the compound on any existing wall texture, use a sponge and water to blend the compound into the texture. BE SURE THE FINAL COAT OF COMPOUND IS DRY BEFORE STARTING THIS!

Now you are ready for retexturing, priming, and painting. While your paint dries, visit your local home improvement center and purchase a doorstop so you won't have to make this repair again.

Copyright © 1998, 2004, & 2007 LAF/C.R.S., Inc. All rights reserved.
Question answered by Leon A. Frechette.

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C.R.S., Inc. · Spokane, Washington · USA

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