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3 Ways To Repair Water-Damaged Drywall

by Tara Pena

If you experienced a flood due to a broken water pipe or a roof leak following a major rainstorm, you are probably dealing with a lot of water damage. Water in the home can quickly damage all your home's surfaces, from the ceiling to the floor. Unfortunately, drywall is often damaged with excessive water damage. It is hard to dry the walls once the water sets in, so you might need to think of some alternatives. Here are the three main options available when you need to repair your water-damaged drywall.

Use a Mesh Drywall Patch

If the water damage was on a small area or isn't too severe, you might be able to use a drywall patch. The best type of patch is a self-adhesive mesh patch. These are available at most hardware stores and are not expensive, making it a good patching option. The patch contains metal mesh that offers support for the areas of drywall that have been destroyed due to the water damage. You will remove the damaged area of drywall, apply the mesh patch to the hole for support, then spackle and paint over the area. It also works for holes in the wall that were caused by other forces aside from water.

Use a New Piece of Drywall

You can also choose to patch the damaged areas with new pieces of drywall. This is the best option for moderate damage where using metal mesh won't cover the desired area. With this option, you first need to cut out all of the drywall that has been damaged by water. Once you have done this, you can cut a new section of drywall and install it. You will need to install a reinforcement frame made of wood and tape the joints. After that, you will add joint compound, sand it, and then paint the surface. This also works when repairing a ceiling.

Use a Drywall Access Panel

The access panel is the third option available to you for a water-damaged wall. This option not only fixes the damaged areas of drywall, but helps to prevent future repairs if you have another leak. With a drywall access panel, you are installing a new piece of drywall after removing the damaged portions, but then you also have access to the pipes in your home. If there is ever a plumbing situation in the future, you can open the panel and let the water drain somewhere else instead of soaking through the walls.