Repairing Small Holes in Drywall

Small holes in drywall can be easily repaired. These types of holes include nail or screw holes (like those left from picture hooks), paper tears and indentations made by furniture and other hard objects.

To repair a simple small nail or screw hole, paper tear or small indentation:
  • Clean the area.
  • Apply a small amount of spackling compound in the hole with a putty knife.
  • Sand when dry.
  • Apply primer and paint.
To repair a popped nail:
  • Make sure the area you are repairing is clean and free of dust.
  • Since the popped nail is no longer holding the drywall, drive a drywall screw or nail into the stud about 1.5″ above or below the popped nail. Indent or dimple the screw or nail into the face paper of the drywall without tearing the paper.
  • Drive the popped nail back below the drywall surface and dimple it.
  • Pick up a small amount of joint compound on the drywall knife, then spread the compound to cover both dimples. Apply a thin coat of compound flush to the surface, with no excess on the corners.
  • Allow the joint compound to dry as recommended by the manufacturer, typically for about 24 hours.
  • Sand the patched area with sandpaper or a sanding sponge, or use a damp sponge to level the compound flush to the surface.
  • Prime the surface before painting.