My patched areas, once primed and painted, are noticeably more "fragile" than original painted drywall - e.g. I can dent them with fingernails, the same way you can dent a chalk stick with fingernails.

(I’m not talking about a movement of the whole patch if i apply palm pressure — the patch is held firmly with screws in furring and/or studs. I’m talking about the repaired area not handling point pressure well. e.g. a ballpoint pen would leave a scratch rather than roll).

I’m wondering if that’s just par for the course with drywall repairs in general, or if there’s something I’m missing…

Here’s how i generally proceed to fix large holes:

  • add pieces of furring to provide a backing (or do california patch)

  • if any, prefill gaps with quickset joint compound (aka “hot mud”)

  • after it’s hardened, scrape excess bits (no sanding)

  • tape joints with lightweight all-purpose compound. let dry.

  • apply second coat to even out depressions or ridges, with lightweight all purpose. let dry

  • apply “skim coat” — very light coat, to feather out ridges, and remove bubbles, with lightweight all purpose. let dry.

  • sand until smooth to the touch. if there are pinholes, i will typically do local touchups (possibly that could be where i go wrong)

  • apply paint primer (specifically formulated for drywall) with a 10mm roller. let dry.

  • apply two coats of latex eggshell paint with 10mm roller. wait at least product recommended duration between coats.

  • give it 1 week to “cure”

After all this, i find the patched wall areas look good, but they are definitely “softer” than the other painted areas.

  • 1
    If you mean dent vs the patch area having more give (which shouldn't be since you added the furring), I must ask what the original wall material is. If you have plaster like I do, that plaster top coat is really very hard. Drywall and mud don't have that, though the setting type muds are harder.
    – blarg
    Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 11:54
  • 2
    Remember that drywall has stiff paper holding it together, the patch does not. If you remove the paper from drywall, your fingernail will dent the inside also.
    – crip659
    Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 13:16
  • i meant the dent having more give. the patch itself doesn’t move, relative to surrounding non-patched areas. i will update
    – init_js
    Commented Jan 22, 2023 at 21:38
  • following a flood restoration, where we had to cut off a 2 foot section at the bottom of the wall, we had to add a significant amount of joint compound to make the wall (imperceptibly) flat again and i was wondering if there was perhaps a remedy to the difference in hardness between repaired and non repaired. sounds like the best we can do is prime well and paint over it a few times, and then forget about it.
    – init_js
    Commented Jan 22, 2023 at 21:42
  • what do you mean with "softer", can you be more specific? texture? give/ movement? how much softer?
    – P2000
    Commented Jan 23, 2023 at 4:53


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