Drywall can be a satisfying job when you do it right. It can also be frustrating when you neglect some basics. Here are some common irritating drywall mistakes and how to avoid them.
Not preparing a flat surface before hanging the drywall. It’s a little extra work to begin with, but in the end, you’ll appreciate it. By shimming out studs to an even plane, your drywall lies completely flat across the studs, meaning you won’t have to deal with extra bulges and bumps, sudden changes (and shadows) at your seams, or drywall pulling screws through the paper.
Not enough “mud” under your tape. If you’re using paper tape, put a good layer of mud down before applying the tape and smoothing out the excess. This ensures the tape adheres, and won’t lift with the second wet coat after drying.
Not waiting long enough between coats. If you apply wet mud to an area that is still not perfectly dry, you can have a number of problems, ranging from scraping off chunks of semi-dry mud, to lifting of the tape as it sucks up moisture from the new coat.
Failing to clean knives and hawk. Dried mud makes applying the next coat a pain, as you drag a nice little groove across your seam. Scrape them constantly, and wash them periodically with warm water.
Not feathering the edges. One of the sanding areas that deserves your attention is the edges of a seam, where the mud merges into the drywall. A light sanding might look good, but once you paint, you’ll see the edge. Sand here until the edge blurs. You can save yourself work by applying pressure to the edge of the drywall knife when applying the mud. This pre-feathering should leave a minimum of sanding.
More next time.