Many homeowners are happy to hang drywall by themselves. But when it comes to taping and finishing, yet, most feel less courageous. Taping drywall or sheetrock to create a professional finish at home, is one of the most difficult, important and extremely time consuming job.
We all have watched professionals on TV and social media tape walls and apply compound in minutes. A few quick passes with a drywall knife, then a quick sanding and the job is done. For this reason, we buy good tools and think that getting a smooth, even finish is going to take us just some hours.
The main problem that you will face when taping drywall is – a lack of experience. The professional tapers, have been doing it for years and if you did drywall taping for 10 or 20 years 5 days a week, you too would develop your own technique and be an expert! But drywall taping it’s not only about smoothly putting a compound. A skilled taper can hide a lot of mistakes left behind by drywall installers and framers. Nonetheless, a bad taping job can cause trouble for painters and trim carpenters.
Here are few taping routine tips.
1. Attention to corners!
Make sure that the drywall is properly attached. First thing to remember before you start your taping project, make sure that the drywall is properly attached to the framing studs. If the corners of drywall are damaged and stick out from the surface, they must be removed. The tape and drywall mud won’t hold pieces of dangling drywall in position. The metal corner beads for the outside corners of drywall should be in position and properly fastened over the corners.
2. Work with Fiber Mesh.
In the next step of your taping project, you will need to work with fiber mesh. Installing fiber mesh saves good amount of time, because it’s self-adhering. Fiber mesh allows mud to pass right through it, so you don’t need to fill cracks and gaps in the drywall before you install the tape. How to work with it? All you need to do is roll it onto the wall and trim it off with a 6inch taping knife. Tape over all the joints, large gaps, holes larger than 1/8 inch and both sides of the outside corner beads. You also will need mesh in inside corners, if you have areas with a gaps larger than 1/8 inch.
3. Mixing the Setting Compound.
Cover all the tape with prepared setting compound using a 6inch taping knife and apply enough mud to fill the gaps under the tape. Setting compound dries rock hard, shrinks less than regular joint compound and doesn’t sand easily. So thinner the coats the better. Be careful, If you sand through the joint compound into the setting compound the result could be notably different on the two areas.
4. Applying Joint Compound.
Before applying joint compound, don’t forget to knock off any ridges or crumbs left over from working with setting compound. Using a 14 inch taping knife, spread a thin coat of joint compound on the butt joints. The goal of applying mud is so the walls end up smooth. Taping knives are flat and flexible. Use enough pressure to apply the joint compound without having wrinkles. But be careful not to apply too much pressure that you remove the layer completely. To see how taping knife angle and pressure work together, we suggest to practice. Use different pressures and angles of the knife during the joint compound application.
5. Top-Coat the Corner Tape
To top-coat the corner tape, use a corner trowel. However, corner trowels can be tricky to work with. One of the tips we can suggest is to not put too much mud. By applying too much mud, will round out the corners, which is going to make it difficult to install trim. Always start at the top of an inside corner from the ceiling, then go back to apply another pass and smooth out the excess left behind. After all the tape has been covered, go back and clean up each side of the tape with a 6 inch taping knife. This step takes skill, practice and time. Also remember to fill all the screw holes! With a 6 inch taping knife make two passes not only over every screw hole but also the screws on the ceiling. Last, before call it a day don’t forget to set up some fans to help speed up the drying period.
6. Final Coating.
The topping compound will work better for your final coating. It is easier to work with and it won’t leave behind air pockets. As you probably guessed, the farther the mud is feathered out, the less noticeable the joint will be. Once again, don’t forget to set up some fans so you can move on to the sanding project.
7. Another tip is to wear the same clothes during your taping project, especially when you’re finishing. Joint compound and finishing work is very messy to deal with, so just expect to get dirty.
To summarize, drywall taping could be a nightmare for unexperienced homeowners and if you decide that this difficult and important job better to be done by a professional, we encourage you to Call Us! Our pro and skillful tapers with many years of experience, fast and easy will turn your nightmare into a beautiful fairy tale. Contact Us Today for a FREE quote! But if you want to try to tape on your own, hope our tips guide you through it.