Photo by Polina Tankilevitch

Drywall is generally an excellent material to substitute for expensive concrete for your home. But what should you do if they show signs of degradation?

Also known as wallboard, they are composed of nonflexible sheets of finishing material usually constructed as interior walls in residential homes and other types of buildings. With drywall construction, using mortar and plaster is not as needed.

The different types of drywall

Drywall materials are usually plywood, wood pulp, asbestos-cement board, and gypsum. The wood fiber and pulp boards are compressed together according to layers or particles of wood then adhesives are added.

There are different types of drywall, and they bring other surface effects like the sound-suppressing ones with high acoustics and insulating drywall. Another kind, called asbestos-cement boards, has additional organic fibers to make them more resilient and more accessible to machines. Drywall boards can also be cured with agents, water-repellent mixtures, and other substances to improve their quality and ease of construction. And to increase the board’s resistance to impact, thin sheets are usually backed with more plywood or insulating board.

What to do when your drywall needs replacement?

If you’re a home or building owner, you need to check your drywall once in a while. They might need the occasional repair or replacement if there are obvious hints of degradation. Drywall boards commonly last for around thirty years, depending on the level of care and maintenance.

Regardless if you just moved in or have lived in your home for a long time, there might be worse-looking corners that must be replaced with new ones. But of course, you can’t do this alone. It would help if you had an expert-level drywall and plaster repair by The Patch Boys of St. Louis. They have handymen who are efficient and experts at repairing drywall boards. You get to save time and money, plus quality service if you hire professionals for any drywall needs.

Common signs that you need to look out for

It’s not easy as an average person to determine damages on the drywall. However, it would be better to know a little about the factors that affect your drywall at home. These are the following signs that your drywall has been damaged: 

1 – Discoloration

A damaged and discolored drywall is always the worst. You can’t just ignore it and hope for the best – this problem also affects the house’s property value, as it can depreciate and cause problems for future owners. It might also worsen, like significant mold, mildew, allergens, and bacteria growth.

Discoloration happens in drywall homes living in humid weather. Moisture is a constant issue and will show spots on the walls and ceiling. Even in dry areas, the drywall can still sag and show signs of moisture. It may be best to remove the source of moisture, but that would mean extra work and hassle.

2. Holes

There may be DIY ways to repair holed-up drywall. For example, you might have slammed the doorknob, and it hit, causing a dent or small hole. Often, mice bore through the drywall to create an opening. They can remedy these issues without affecting the entire wall.

However, larger holes mean a more significant problem. The strength of your drywall might drastically reduce, and it becomes vulnerable to more vital forces like harsh weather or strong impact. If the hole is around five inches or more extensive, you need a professional to handle the replacement of your drywall. At the same time, it’s also better to replace the drywall if it has accumulated small holes.

3. Cracks

It is possible to patch a crack because of a misplaced seam unless it affects the wall’s structural integrity. If the gap is too large, a professional should remove and replace it. They are knowledgeable enough to remove the drywall without affecting the entire structure. If you attempt this yourself, you’ll only add further damage to your wall.

4. Water Damage

Water damage is a scenario no one wants to encounter, especially for people who live in drywall houses. The result is often significant, irreparable damage that needs replacement. Wet walls and ceilings will speed up the growth of bacteria, mold, mildew, and allergens. Failing to address the mold issue will affect the air around your home, causing various illnesses when inhaled. You need to closely monitor the most obscure corners of your walls and have them replaced if there are any signs of moisture.

5. Bulging & Splinters

If you see bumps on your drywall, professionals can remedy that by painting over them. However, that’s merely a Band-Aid solution that won’t make the problem disappear. Professional replacement is still the way to go for bulges on your drywall.

Splinters may not be as common as bulging since drywall is plaster. But most of the time, drywall panels are backed by plywood as substitutes. It’s a sign of aging and will compromise structural safety.

The best time to have drywall replacement

Patching up and replacement are standard solutions to damaged drywall, depending on the size of the damage. Consider a professional replacement when there are large holes, cracks, mold spots, discoloration, moisture issues, and splinters.

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