Drywall is the most common way to finish interior walls, and the key to it looking attractive is a quality taping job. The tape is what covers the seams and creates a smooth appearance. This finish work is where the most skill and patience is involved, and will always look shabby unless completed correctly.
Before attempting to tape drywall, it is recommended to practice in an inconspicuous area. An important thing to remember, the whole process from start to finish will take three to four days, and shouldn’t be rushed.
Begin by making sure all screws are in as far as they can go without puncturing the drywall. All of the seams and corners should have screws at least every six inches. Using your wet plaster and a taping trowel, put a thin coat of mudd over each screw in the field, you just want to smooth these without adding any form of a bulge or ridge.
The next step is to apply the tape. Thin your mud, and apply to the seam. Cut your tape and dip it in water to moisten it, and then press into the plaster on the seam. Make sure the tape is centered over the seam. Allow to dry.
After the tape seams and corners are dry, lightly sand any protruding areas. Apply a second coat of plaster creating a six-inch section. Allow to dry, sand, and then repeat with a third coat. Repeat this process at least four times until your seam is around 10 inches in width. This will create a smooth area that will not show the tape, and will allow for the drywall and plaster to shrink over the coming months as it settles and thoroughly dries. After this point, all that should be necessary is to look for any small areas that may need touching up. After all coats are dry, sand the seams smooth.
You are now ready for primer, and then whatever finish you decide to apply. If you would like the assistance of a licensed contractor with your taping project, request free estimates from skilled drywall contractors in your area.
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