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If you find yourself needing to repair holes in walls, remember that there are different methods depending on the size of the hole and the material from which the wall is constructed. You can repair holes yourself if they are not too large or if you are handy around the house. If holes are large or if you aren’t exactly proficient when it comes to do-it-yourself projects, consider asking for help or hiring a professional.
If you are up to the task, first take a close look at the hole or holes that need repair. A small hole, such as those caused by nails, screws, or dings, can be patched easily. All you need to repair holes like these, about the size of your fingertip or smaller, is some spackling compound, a scraper, sandpaper, and touch up paint.
Using a small paint scraper, scoop up a generous amount of compound and apply it to the hole. Repair holes by filling them completely, then scrape the excess from the area with the scraper. Allow it to dry and sand the area smooth. Note that different types of wall compounds that are commonly used to repair holes contract as they dry.
After you repair holes, if shrinkage is noted, apply a second generous coat of compound. Once dry, sand the surface smooth and wipe away all sanding residue. Paint the area to match the rest of the wall. This is a good reason to save leftover paint after a painting project.
To repair holes that are larger or oddly shaped, you may need to cut out a larger hole. First, pick up some wallboard - or drywall, or sheetrock - or use a scrap piece. Cut out a square or circle using a jigsaw. Trace this piece over the existing hole. Cut the wall to the shape, staying inside the traced lines. Apply a backer before inserting the patch piece into the circle or square you cut from the wall.
The simplest way to apply a backer is slip a small, thin board or piece of wood into the hole. Center it across the back of the hole and attach it from the face of the wall with small screws or nails. Apply the patch piece, apply compound, and continue as directed above. When the project is complete and the compound and paint are dry, remove the bracing screws or nails. Just repair holes created by screws or nails with a dot of compound, and the job is done.
For larger holes, that still only require spackling to fix, you don't have to go to all the trouble of cutting a piece of wood and securing it to your wall to hold the filler. If you go to your local home supply and hardware store, you can buy a peel and stick repair patch that will do the job with a lot less work.
This material can be easily cut to size and is basically a sticker of wire mesh that is strong and durable. This patch gives you a surface to apply spackling to so that you can once again have a smooth wall.
I think every household should keep some filler on hand and a little sand paper for small holes. Most fillers come in an easy to use tube, and you can just apply it to the hole with your thumb.
This compound is fantastic for filling pinholes and any nasty nail marks left behind from your pictures and other wall hangings.
For those who are into do it yourself projects, always keep a paint chip on hand. If you have a lot of holes, having this will make painting over the filler painless. The filler is a bright white so it will generally stand out against your wall and be an eyesore.
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