I have a very small attic space above my bathroom, and there is no access to this space.

The tube that goes from the exhaust fan to the roof is not attached, and I would like to attach it to get proper venting.

There is a room next to the bathroom with a higher ceiling, and I could cut through the wall to get to this attic space to reattach the tube.

Can you please advise me on what tool I should use to cut through the drywall to get into this space?

If possible, it would be nice to do this neatly so that I can patch it back together without too much effort afterwards.

EDIT: I've since found this, which looks like pretty good advice

1 Answer 1


Yes, a drywall saw is the tool to use. But for a hole big enough to crawl through, I would not bother with 45 degree cuts. It's more work when making long cuts and is not secure enough to support large patch panels. Cut out a panel all the way to adjoining studs. Then cut out an additional 3/4" strip each side so the replacement panel can bear directly on 1/2 of each stud. You can use a utility knife and chisel to remove the strip. You will hit screws or nails while cutting the strip, remove them as they are found. When installing the new panel, use a new fastener on each side of the joint where ever you found a fastener.

The plain butt joint at top and bottom is not a problem because your patch panel is spanning between studs. You may want to consider installing a removable plywood panel and casing the opening rather than patching the drywall.

  • Thank you! I actually don't need to crawl through, just get my arm through. It is also in a place that is not visible, so I was thinking of cutting a smaller hole and using these for repair: amazon.com/gp/product/B001NOCL18 Please let me know if you have any comments on that approach.
    – minou
    Commented Sep 17, 2013 at 1:56
  • 1
    For small repairs, I'm sure those will work fine, though I haven't used them. For small repairs, anything that holds the panel in place until the mud sets will work. One could also simply slip a piece of lath behind the opening, held by screws through drywall adjacent to opening. Others have overcut a patch panel, then scored the correct size on the back. The excess gypsum is snapped and peeled off the face paper so the oversized face paper holds the panel roughly flush. It's all a little sloppy until the mud sets, then it's quite solid.
    – bcworkz
    Commented Sep 18, 2013 at 8:10

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