Repairing Torn Drywall



The need for repairing torn drywall often occurs after removing wallpaper, paneling, mirrors, tape, or picture holders from a wall(s). It can also happen when something accidentally scrapes or gouges the wall causing the paper to tear.

It can even happen when you are installing the drywall. Sometimes things aren't fitting just right, and you try to force it in place. This leaves you with the question of repairing torn drywall paper.

If the damage is a small area, drywall repair of loose paper can be as simple as just applying mud under the paper and gently pushing the loose paper back down. Then cover over the top of the torn drywall paper with your mud by lightly drawing your drywall blade from the secure edge of the paper over the loose or torn paper side.

If the damage is a little bigger or the paper is frayed along the edges, then you will need to do more in your repairing of torn drywall paper. To do this, use a razor or drywall knife to cut the paper around and outside of the damaged area. Pull off any loose paper, sand lightly, to help remove any debris and to smooth out the damaged paper. You can now skim over your repair area.

You want to make sure that you have taken off all the loose paper or it will just bubble back up when you apply your drywall mud over it. Or you may not notice the bubbles until after the mud has dried and a bubble has formed. If this happens, you will need to cut out these new bubbles and sand the area if possible, then re-skim the damaged area one or more times.

For any larger areas, when you are repairing torn drywall paper, cut away any loose paper and take out any damaged drywall that has been broken or damaged. Then sand lightly to remove the loose surrounding paper and broken debris. Most times, with more extensive damage in repairing torn drywall, you will want to apply drywall tape over the torn and broken area as you apply your mud. This will help in repairing torn drywall paper better than just filling the damaged area with mud.

You can prevent a lot of frustration when the paper on drywall is torn by sealing the damaged area with an oil or shellac sealer, or specialty products that are made specifically for this problem. Do this before you skim the damaged area. When the sealer is dry, skim out the wall enough times until it is smooth and level enough to sand out. Then lightly sand the surface to smooth it for paint or texturing.