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How To Repair Small Holes in Drywall

Nail and other small nail holes are easily repaired using joint compound or other patching material. Some people even use toothpaste to fill nail holes (although we don't recommend using the green mint gel type of toothpaste).

Small holes can usually be repaired without the use of reinforcing mesh tape. Simply applying one or more coats of joint compound will fill and hide most small holes.

For nail holes, simply get a small amount of patching compound on your fingertip and apply it to the hole. Because the material may shrink as it dries, additional applications may be necessary to completely hide the hole.

For holes half an inch or smaller, apply patching compound with a putty knife to create a smooth, even patch. Fill the hole with material and then smooth the surface with the putty knife. Allow the patch to dry.

After the compound has dried for at least a couples hours, lightly sand it smooth. Wipe away any dust and apply another coat of joint compound. Taper the compound at the edges to blend it with the surrounding surface. Allow this coat to dry and then sand.

Finally, apply a third coat of joint compound. With this coat, it will be necessary to blend it with the surrounding decorative texture. There are many different textures, so we can't list all of them here. However, matching a texture can sometimes be done by dragging the compound around with a putty knife, dabbed with a moist sponge, or sprayed on with off the shelf products designed to retexture small patches.





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