How to Repair Water Damaged Drywall with 5 Steps
Water has the potential to be harmful. When it comes into contact with the drywall that makes up your interior walls and ceilings, it can make them look unattractive — or, worse, it can damage the wallboard to the point where it collapses and falls apart, causing headaches for owners. But don’t get too upset. Water damage to walls and ceilings can be repaired if you know how to repair water-damaged drywall and tools. This step-by-step repair tutorial will teach you how to repair water-damaged drywall yourself.
#01 Find and Repair the Leak
You must first find the source of the water leak before making any repairs. This can be annoying, but repairs will be useless unless the cause of the water problem is fixed first. It can be challenging to identify the source of a leaky roof, a broken pipe, or a leaking toilet. Water can travel a long distance from the source of the leak and inflict damage in unexpected places.
Making a six-square-inch hole in your drywall near the water damage will usually show the leaky pipe piece. You’ll need to turn off the water and cut out the damaged pipe part to fix the leak.
Install the new pipe most productively for the pipe type you have. When picking repair options, keep in mind that some easy DIY-type fittings aren’t meant to be used behind drywall or in unreachable spots.
#02 Replace Leaking Drywall
Put down drop cloths or tarps before you begin to catch all the drywall pieces, dust, and debris that will be created by removing the damaged drywall. Cleanup will be easier, and surfaces will be protected from dust and dirt.
Examine the drywall to determine the extent of the damage. The heavily wet wallboard will sag from the ceilings or break when touched. Remove all drywall that has been compromised by hand or with the claw end of a hammer or a wrecking bar.
Measure the size of the hole after removing the damaged drywall so you can cut a patch from a fresh sheet of drywall. Four drywall clips should be placed around the hole. Use a drywall screw to secure each one, making sure to countersink the screw head. Take care not to overtighten the screw. Cut out the patch and install it, then use drywall screws to secure it to the drywall clips (and any available ceiling joists). Make sure you don’t overtighten.
Before attaching the panel to the wall, measure and cut out any spaces for outlets if you’re replacing big portions of drywall damaged by floods.
When making big repairs, keep in mind that drywall has a bound edge and a butt edge. The sheet’s bound or long edge is thinner than the rest. It’s simpler to hide longer taped joints under numerous applications of a joint compound by lowering the thickness here. The sheet’s butt edges are the same thickness as the remainder of the sheet. It’s vital to avoid linking bound edges to butt edges to get an even, finished look. Remember that because wall studs are vertical, drywall is often installed with the longer side running horizontally (perpendicular) to the studs. This serves to reinforce the wall’s strength while also breaking up vertical drywall joints.
#03 Get Mold Out
Mold grows in moist drywall because of the porous quality of the material. If the drywall is still highly durable but plagued with mold, scrubbing the drywall will destroy the mold. Mold may be killed using a diluted bleach solution that won’t harm the drywall.
Within one to two days, the chlorine bleach should destroy all evidence of mold, as well as minor water stains on the wall. The next step is to sand and paint the wall if any visible stains remain.
#04 Prime and Paint
To remove water stains in drywall, start by scraping off any loose or peeling paint with a paint scraper. Begin sanding the wall with medium-grit sandpaper and work your way down to a finer grit until the surface is smooth. When the drywall surface is clear of blemishes, you can prime and paint it.
Coat your roller or paintbrush with Paint in a paint tray. 6-foot lengths of paint should be painted widthwise. A zigzag pattern of overlapping “W” strokes was used to create square parts. Spread equally with vertical strokes from right to left, then left to right.
Use light strokes to re-roll across the ceiling and paint from the bottom to the top of each wall to ensure even coverage. You don’t need to mix if your paint has a flat finish. Otherwise, paint one-directional, overlapping, non-diagonal strokes across the entire surface (for vast areas, do two square parts at a time) to mix.
Brush in areas where your roller can’t reach, such as corners adjacent to doors, windows, and molding, with a small, angular paintbrush.
Apply a second layer of paint, if necessary, using the same process as the first. You don’t have to wait until the paint is entirely dry between layers, but the longer you wait, the better your results will be (12 to 24 hours). The dried joint compound quickly absorbs moisture. Before painting, the repair will need to be primed to help seal the area.
#05 Clean the area
Clean up dust and dirt using a shop vacuum. Close your paint cans and pick up your drop cloths or tarps. Used paint cans should be disposed of properly. Warm, soapy water makes cleaning paintbrushes and other equipment a breeze. Rinse your roller covers and brushes thoroughly in water until the water runs clear, then spin them in a brush/roller spinner to remove any remaining moisture. Hang them on nails or hooks or store them in their protective sleeves. Carefully pick up drop cloths, careful not to spread any paint that may have gotten on them.
You did an excellent job! You’ve repaired your wall after water damage. And I hope you’ve gained a decent grasp on how to repair water-damaged drywall.