How to Fix Nail Holes



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When you move into a new place, whether it’s an apartment or a new house, most people have a moment of pause when it comes to putting that first hole in the drywall – you want so badly for it to be just right.

But, it goes all wrong. Or, maybe it goes brilliantly, but then you decide to move the wall décor you hung, or move altogether. In any case, knowing how to quickly patch and repair drywall (or wood) is an essential skill and nail holes are an unavoidable part of a well-decorated life.

Spackle vs. Putty

Spackle and putty aren’t that different, but they’re different enough to make it important to remember which is which when it comes to plugging holes in your wall.

Putty (which comes in many different forms like painter’s putty, water putty, etc.) is primarily used for cracks and holes in wood surfaces and is not intended to be sanded. You just smoosh it into the hole with a putty knife or your finger so that the putty is smooth and flush with the edges of the hole, let it dry and then add touch-up paint if necessary. Voila!

Spackle, on the other hand, is what you want to use on drywall if you intend to sand the area smooth and paint over it. Lightweight spackle, however, does not take to sanding as well, but is great for filling small holes made by nails and screws when no sanding is necessary.

Remember: Spackle for drywall, putty for wood.

Bridging Bigger Holes

Small holes are a snap, but what about when you put the hammer through the wall? You may be surprised to find out that’s also a pretty easy fix – when it comes to drywall, anyway. If the hole is less than 6 inches in diameter you can use what’s called “bridging material” to mend the hole.

Bridging material is a kind of fiberglass or metal adhesive mesh that is placed over the hole. First, you sand the area around the hole, remove any dust and then affix a mesh square so that the hole is covered by at least an inch on every side. You then apply spackle, let it dry overnight, sand it and then repeat until the patch is smooth. Finally, paint it to match the surrounding area. Voila (Part 2)!

ATGStores.com hopes these tips help you with your next picture-hanging adventure.

Avoid big holes in the first place with this deluxe wall-hanger kit from Hangman Products that includes a wide assortment of conventional and specialty picture hangers and wall fasteners. 

Putty knives come in all shapes and sizes, but you can't miss with this assortment from K Tool International.

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