Best way to patch sheetrock where wall switch removed?

Chris StrombergerNovember 22, 2005

I've never dealt with sheetrock/texturing/etc, but want to learn. I relocated a closet wall switch from the wall outside of the closet to the wall inside the closet (basically, did a 180). So I am left with a hole in the bedroom sheetrock the size of a wall switch. What's the best way to patch it?



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check out this previous post. It should answer your question.

Good luck

Here is a link that might be useful: dry wall patch

    Bookmark   November 22, 2005 at 10:44PM
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Make what's called a 'hot patch' by cutting a scrap of sheetrock 2" longer and wider than the rectangle left by the wall switch. Now, turn the piece over and score a line on the back 1" in from the edges on all sides ... cut close to, but not through the paper on the front side. Take each 1" wide strip and flex it to break it from the main piece and remove the gypsum. What you should have left is a sheetrock patch that fits in the hole with a 1" paper border all around it.

Spread joint compound around the wall switch opening and set your patch in the hole. Using a 2-3" putty knife, flatten the paper border into the wet compound. Then spread joint compound over the top of the patch border and trowel it down just to the paper edge, feathering it out from there. Let dry and sand lightly. That's about it!

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 8:32AM
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Cut out two small pieces of plywood that can slide underneath and go about 1" in from each edge. Fasten these in to the surrounding drywall. Cut out a patch piece of drywall and fasten it onto the plywood. Then place mud over, scrape level, place more coats of mud and scrape level (no need to tape on this small hole). Lightly sand, prime, and paint. For step by step instructions with photos, go to the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Drywall Hole Repair

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 8:43AM
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Chris Stromberger

The "hot patch" method seems interesting. Will that hold up well, with only the paper supporting the patch?

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 9:26AM
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Sure, the "hot patch" will be fine but you'll have a local "bulge" due to the increased thickness of the facer on top of the wall. This can be feathered out and sanded so as to be less obtrusive but it will be there. Whether it is noticeable or not is dependent on the wall finish and room lighting. If it's acceptable is a matter of personal preference.

If the spot is a likely bump zone then you might be better off supporting it from behind. Also with less thickness on the outside face of the wall it can sanded a little flatter.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 1:41PM
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Chris Stromberger

Good points sdello. Thanks to all who replied.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 2:51PM
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If you don't tape it in what Drywall DIY guy said it will crack after time. I tried that and after time I got hair line cracks where the patch was. If you do the hot patch just flair the taping compound out around the patch using a wide knife. Then you don't have a bump just where the patch is.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2005 at 7:54AM
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You need to tape the joints so you are going to have a bump. I use the hot patch method. You can use a stick behind it as well and one screw in the center to hold it. I like to use a setting compound to fill the gaps around the patch and then mud to glue the flaps and taper it.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2005 at 1:42PM
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I use Mike's method but I take another step to avoid the edge or bump. I slice the wallboard paper and peel it away, exposing the gypsum so that the hot patch "flaps" or "border" can fit flush with the existing paper. I coat with light mud, press it into place and trowel a thin coat over it. Very rarely does it leave any sign of repair.

Be sure to mud the edges of the hole before inserting the hot patch.

I have also used the metal patch kit the same way, imbedded in the drywall then covering with mud.


    Bookmark   November 24, 2005 at 3:44PM
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Take a piece of trim 4" longer than the hole and as wide as possible, put it inside the hole with 2" on each end and screw it to the drywall from the outside. Cut a piece of drywall to fit in the hole and screw it to the trim. Tape, bed, skim and sand. Or your local drywall supply house should carry a fiberglass patch punched with holes which is applied with a thin coat of "mud" to the back. and with two coats on the surface after the back has dried.

    Bookmark   November 27, 2005 at 8:29PM
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The simplest method is to buy a repair patch from Lowes or Home Depot.

The repair patches come in sizes about 6x6 inches, are reinforced with metal mesh and are self sticking.

You just peel off the back to expose the adhesive, stick them over the hole then, and immediately cover them with joint compound.

They cost about $5.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2005 at 7:53AM
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Here's one type of drywall repair patch by Goldblatt.

Stanley makes another...

Here is a link that might be useful: Drywall Repair Patch

    Bookmark   November 28, 2005 at 8:01AM
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I suppose there are a dozen ways to fill a hole in sheetrock, but the hot patch is the easiest way I've seen to fill small voids ... permanently. I first saw it used when we had professional drywallers in to sheetrock our kitchen remodel. They used it on an existing wall where we wanted to eliminate an old outlet box. The paper flange around the patch works just the same as drywall tape and shouldn't pull loose or show a bulge if mudded and feathered out, using essentially the same process as taping a seam between two sheets of drywall.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2005 at 9:42AM
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The easiest was is to put a electrical switch plate (blank,no switchhole) over the hole...

then tell you're spouse its all fixed


    Bookmark   November 28, 2005 at 9:57AM
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We're installing a sheet rock patch in a wall with a stud behind it. Now if there was not a stud here, you would have to get some clips or use a small, thin board on each end. You just want to the patch up to it, that's already been pre-cut and everything. Get it to sit in there right. Screw it in nice and tight. And then we would take a- once it's all installed- take some, either the net kind, sheet rock tape, or they also make a paper kind. I prefer this because you can just stick it on- it's self-adhesive.

And you take some sheet rock mud, and you're going to do this in several coats, because you don't want it too thick. So, just going to scrape it on like that. And this first coat does not have to be real smooth. Just get it real thin, and you're going to let this dry- this is probably going to take three to four hours to dry , and once it's dry, you'll be able to tell- it'll just be all white. And after that you sand it, put one more coat on it and sand it that. And then you're ready to prime it.

Here is a link that might be useful: how to patch shhetrock

    Bookmark   May 17, 2006 at 7:07PM
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