Patching Large Holes in Drywall


Drywall is a popular construction material made from gypsum and water pressed between sheets of heavy paper. This product is used to make walls, ceilings and architectural specialties. While this material is very durable and will last for years, it can be damaged by heavy impact or high abuse. One of the most common problems with drywall is the development of large holes caused by heavy objects, like furniture, striking the wall. The average person can fix these holes on their own using simple tools. The project can typically be completed in just a few days.

Things You'll Need

  • Plywood scraps
  • Drywall screws
  • Drill
  • Drywall
  • Measuring tape
  • Utility kife
  • Drywall tape
  • Joint compound (mud)
  • Spackle knife
  • Sandpaper
  • Use your utility knife to cut a square opening around the hole. It is much easier to replace a square of drywall than an oddly shaped piece. Remove and dispose of any debris.

  • Place a piece of plywood at the top of the hole behind the drywall. Use screws to secure the wood in place so that a few inches of the plywood are visible at the top of the hole. Do the same thing at the bottom.

  • Measure your hole using your measuring tape. Once you have your dimensions, cut a piece of drywall to this size using your utility knife.

  • Place the piece of drywall in the hole and screw it onto the plywood. Screws should be placed about an inch from the joint where the patch meets the wall.

  • Cover the four sides of the patch with drywall tape. Apply a small amount of joint compound to the wall using your spackle knife, and spread it thinly along the tape.

  • Wait 24 hours for the joint compound to dry, then lightly sand the joints a bit at a time until they are level with the rest of the surface. The walls are now ready to be painted.

Tips & Warnings

  • A large amount of dust will be generated during the sanding process. Make sure to cover any furniture that is close by, and wear a dust mask for protection.

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  • Photo Credit Marc du Winter, Wiki Commons
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