See our other wall repair how-tos:
Special thanks to Bob Tobin of BC Interiors, 718-258-8888.
Tools and Materials
- Scraper or 5-in-1 tool
- Primer sealer
- Coarse sandpaper (80 to 100 grit)
- Joint compound
- Taping knife
- Flexible putty knife
- Vinyl spackling compound (or wood filler for holes in wood trim)
Wall Repairs How-To
1. Hairline cracks: these cracks are common and easy to fix yourself. Here's how:
Remove any loose material around the crack with a scraper or 5-in-1 tool. Sand any raised spots, and seal with a primer sealer.
2. Apply a rough coat of joint compound with a taping knife. (Knives range from 4 to 10 inches; use what feels comfortable.)
3. Lay a piece of joint tape over the compound. The tape should be the full length of the crack. With a taping knife, press out excess compound. Let dry.
4.Apply a second, even coat of joint compound that is 5 inches wider than the tape on each side. Let dry. Sand lightly, and apply a thin polish coat of joint compound to fill any scratches from sanding. Let dry. The wall is ready to prime and paint.
5. Small holes: you can fill small holes -- such as those left by picture hangers -- in a flash. Using a flexible putty knife, apply vinyl spackling compound (or wood filler for holes in wood trim). Let dry; then sand.