Repairing Drywall Seams


P

Paul

I recently removed wall paper and after a few hot water baths and
washing the glue off. I painted the wall. After the paint had dried,
it revealed two bad horizontal seams in one of the stairwell walls.
The seams are slightly rounded to the point that it is visible in any
light. What is the best way to repair this? Mine out the seam, sand
down the edges and repair it with tape and mud??
 
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L

longshot

Paul said:
I recently removed wall paper and after a few hot water baths and
washing the glue off. I painted the wall. After the paint had dried,
it revealed two bad horizontal seams in one of the stairwell walls.
The seams are slightly rounded to the point that it is visible in any
light. What is the best way to repair this? Mine out the seam, sand
down the edges and repair it with tape and mud??

sand it down a bit, go over it with joint compound top coating with a 16
trowel & "float" out the bump. other options include adding wainscot, chair
rails, stucco, ect
 
D

DAC

What is the best way to repair this? Mine out the seam, sand
down the edges and repair it with tape and mud??
That's what I had to do. I tried the floating out with a large knife
and trowel...but in the stairwell, and the way the light hit the
wall...it really stood out. After the steps you mentioned, it know
looks acceptable. I really don't know how the drywall crew could of
YUCKED a simple seam like that up so bad but the did. Rather than mine
out the whole seam, you could take a hand rasp, knock off the
protruding mud, and a bit more, then re-tape and mud.

On one seam, I was successful in getting to the level of the mud, and
with a small spray bottle of water wetting down the tape and removing
the tap from the seam....level it off re-tape and move on.

Good luck,

DAC
 
P

Paul

DAC said:
That's what I had to do. I tried the floating out with a large knife
and trowel...but in the stairwell, and the way the light hit the
wall...it really stood out. After the steps you mentioned, it know
looks acceptable. I really don't know how the drywall crew could of
YUCKED a simple seam like that up so bad but the did. Rather than mine
out the whole seam, you could take a hand rasp, knock off the
protruding mud, and a bit more, then re-tape and mud.

On one seam, I was successful in getting to the level of the mud, and
with a small spray bottle of water wetting down the tape and removing
the tap from the seam....level it off re-tape and move on.

Good luck,

DAC
Thanks!
 
M

Mike Paulsen

Paul said:
I recently removed wall paper and after a few hot water baths and
washing the glue off. I painted the wall. After the paint had dried,
it revealed two bad horizontal seams in one of the stairwell walls.
The seams are slightly rounded to the point that it is visible in any
light. What is the best way to repair this? Mine out the seam, sand
down the edges and repair it with tape and mud??
Horizontal seams in the stairway can be a problem since the drywall
often crosses the rim joist between floors. When the joists dry out (or
if there is significant seasonal moisture change) the wood
shrinkage/movement is enough to cause the drywall to crack or bulge. Or
both.

You can try repairing the seam and see how it holds up through a few
seasons. If it buckles or cracks again, you'll either have to live with
it or install an expansion joint.

If you want to try to fix the seam, carefully scrape off the paint and
mud as you can, being careful not to damage the wallboard itself. You
can loosen up the mud (assuming it wasn't a setting type mud) by wetting
with a sponge. Keep wetting and scraping until you're able to remove the
paper tape. You can then re-tape and mud it even with the existing wall.
(It's a lot of work, but adding another layer of tape and mud over the
existing joint would likely create a noticeable hump in the wall.)

Chair rail moulding is also worth considering.
 
D

DAC

You ask a good question. I have used paintable caulk in my drywall
repair when I removed the texturing from the ceiling and in the process
nicked or poked through the paper corner tape. a good flexible caulk
over the slit seemed much better than re-taping the whole seam.

My thought would be to save the caulking for small cracks and where
there's a definate bulging of the seam tape...I would suggest redoing
the seam.

DAC
 
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After finishing, drywall seams are supposed to blend into the wall and disappear. Occasionally, however, the finisher uses insufficient joint compound when taping or spreads it unevenly, and the tape bubbles or separates. Moreover, seams that have been properly finished can crack if the walls move slightly or if there is a source of vibration nearby. Whether these defects occur before or after you've painted the wall, you have to repair drywall tape seam with new joint compound, or mud. If the wall has a glossy finish, though, a coat of primer helps the mud stick better.

Tip
If you're in a hurry, you can speed up the drying time of the mud by running a heater in the room.

Scrape Away Loose Tape and Mud
Excavate around the damaged drywall bulge with a 4-inch drywall knife. Use the corner of the knife to puncture bubbles and to pull up loose tape, and use the blade to scrape off any loose or chipped mud. Cut the loose tape off with a utility knife, advises Drywall Repair Texture and Finishing Techniques.

Sand the Area
Sand the area you scraped lightly with 120-grit sandpaper to make sure there are no mud chips left to contaminate the new mud you need to apply. Spread a coat of wall primer over an area about 2 inches wider than the area you're repairing with a paintbrush, and let the primer dry.

Apply a Think Coat of Mud
Spread a thin coat of mud on the repair with a 4-inch drywall knife. Lay new tape on the areas from which you removed tape. The tape adheres better and is easier to scrape if you dunk it in a pail of water before laying it on the wall.

Add a Second Layer of Mud
Flatten the tape with the knife, then cover it with more mud and scrape that mud flat. Let the tape and mud dry overnight.

Apply a Third Layer of Mud
Spread another coat of mud over the repair with a 6- to 10-inch knife. Using a wider knife makes it easier to flatten the edges into the wall and make a flat seam. Let that mud dry, and spread another coat, if necessary.

Wash the Wall
Sand the repair with 120-grit sandpaper and wait for it to dry. It's a good idea to wash the entire wall before you paint the repair. If the wall is dirty, the spot you repaint will be visible. Another option is to repaint the entire wall. Keep in mind that gloss and semi-gloss paints tend to highlight drywall imperfections, while flat paint de-emphasizes them. Sand the repair with 120-grit sandpaper.

Finish With a Primer and Topcoat
Cover the wall with a coat of wall primer, recommends Handyman USA. When the primer dries, topcoat the repair with the wall color.

Things You Will Need
4-inch drywall knife

Utility knife

120-grit sandpaper

Wall primer

Paintbrush

Drywall joint compound (mud)

Paper drywall tape

Pail

6- to 10-inch drywall knife

Wall paint

Warning
If the tape is cracked, investigate the reason. There may be problems with the wall framing or foundation that need attention.
 

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