How to Repair Drywall That Has Been Water Damaged

Whether your drywall is damaged due to a leaky roof, flooding, or condensation from your central air conditioning, repairing water-damaged drywall quickly is crucial. The ceilings and walls of your home need to be sturdy. Water damage can cause your drywall to crumble and fail, so drying, repairing and replacing your drywall after it suffers water damage is crucial.

Signs of Water Damage

Water damage to drywall is commonly caused by:How to Repair Drywall That Has Been Water Damaged
  • Chronic condensation
  • Leaks in the roof, foundation, or attic
  • Natural disasters such as hurricanes
  • Damaged pipes

Identifying water damage early is key to preventing extensive damage and for preventing mold, but in some cases, you may not notice the water damage until it is too late. When looking for water damage check your ceiling for depression around the fasteners. As the water causes the ceiling to droop and sag, it will cause small dimples to form. These dimples will look like an upside-down crater.

If you notice these small dimples, be sure to remove all valuables from the room, due to the possibility of a ceiling collapse. If you see bubbles forming on the ceiling, this may indicate the water is sitting on the other side. It is recommended that you puncture the bubble and allow the water to drain into a bucket.

How to Tell if the Drywall Needs to be Repaired or Replaced

One way to see if your drywall is salvageable, you can poke the drywall with your fingers to determine its structural integrity. If the drywall still feels solid and firm, there is a chance that it could be okay, but if it is soft or spongy, you will need to cut out the damaged area and replace it carefully.

Repairing Drywall

Should your walls or ceiling be impacted enough that replacement might be required, it is most important to take out all of the damaged or affected wallboard. Wallboard or drywall (sometimes referred to as sheetrock) comes in sheets of 4 foot wide and 8-12 feet long. Your walls and ceilings will normally have support framing (wall studs or ceiling joists) that are 16 inches apart. When cutting or removing the wallboard, cut to the centers of the joist or stud that is just beyond the wet or affected area. In most cases, it is better to use full 4-foot sheets to take advantage of the beveled edges which makes a smoother finish.

Unless you have experienced with replacing or repairing drywall, it is better to leave drywall finishing to professionals. It is not difficult, so if you wish to attempt your own repairs, go to YouTube for a look at the many how-to instructions videos.

Focus on getting wet drywall dried or removed. Get the insulation dried or replaced and get the structural materials completely dried. Rushing to close up walls and ceilings before their completely dried can be very problematic when it comes to potential future mold growth.

Professional Water Damage Restoration in Pittsburgh

At ServiceMaster Pittsburgh, our emergency water damage restoration services are designed to help minimize the damage to your home. We are available to respond to your restoration needs 24 hours day, seven days a week to assess the damage and develop a comprehensive drying plan for your home. We will quickly extract the water, remove any unsalvageable building materials, and will also install high-performance dehumidification equipment. We also offer professional construction services, which include drywall replacement and repair.

Save yourself the hassle of cleaning up water damage and replacing drywall by trusting your home to ServiceMaster Pittsburgh to restore your home quickly and efficiently.
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