How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole with Nothing Behind It

A Clever and Easy Way to Repair a Drywall Hole with No Wall Stud Supports

By Mark J. Donovan

Question: Mark, I just moved into an apartment today with my family and one of my sisters accidentally banged into a wall and made a large hole in the drywall. We couldn’t believe how easily the drywall caved in. When we looked closely at the drywall hole we saw that there was nothing behind it. There was no insulation and not even a wall stud for several feet. That’s probably why the drywall broke so easily. The hole is quite large and I don’t know how to fix it since there is nothing behind it to screw a patch of drywall into it. Any ideas on how to repair a drywall hole like this would be greatly appreciated.

Answer: Z.C. Your assessment of why the drywall hole occurred so easily is dead on. Since the spacing of the wall studs was apparently so wide the drywall easily flexed when your sister banged into it.

But not to worry. I have a clever way to get around the lack of wall studs to repair a drywall hole with nothing behind it.

First, find yourself a utility knife and square up the drywall hole a little. You may want to use a straight edge and pencil to mark where you want to make your cuts before using the utility knife.

Next, run down to your local home improvement center and buy an eight foot section of 1”x3” lumber (a.k.a. strapping). Also, pick up a small section of drywall, at least large enough to cover the hole. Also pick up some joint compound, drywall tape, drywall taping knife, drywall screws, primer and paint. You’ll also need a piece of drywall sanding screen.

Next cut four small lengths of 1×3 lumber pieces so that they can form a perimeter on the inside of the squared up drywall hole. Then place one piece of 1”x3” lumber into the hole so that half the width of it is hidden by the existing drywall.

Hold it firmly in place while you screw drywalls screws through the surrounding drywall and into the 1”x3” lumber. Repeat this process on all 4 sides of the hole. Once complete, you will observe that you have a lip all around the inside of the drywall hole to attach a piece of drywall to.

Cut a piece of drywall to fit perfectly into the hole and screw it in place with drywall screws. The drywall screws should screw into the 1”x3” lumber pieces.

Once the drywall patch is in place, you can then tape and mud the seams with joint compound and your drywall taping knife. After applying one coat of mud (joint compound), let it fully dry and then lightly sand it. Then apply a second coat in the same manner flaring out the seams a bit on the second coat. Again let it dry and lightly sand it. Apply one more coat of joint compound to complete the process. Again, lightly sand it when it is dry.

Finally, prime and paint the patch to complete the drywall hole repair.

How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole EBook

For information on repairing a large drywall hole, see the “How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole” Ebook from  The “How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole” Ebook provides step-by-step instructions on how to repair your damaged wall so that it looks as good as new.

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