Taping and Mudding Drywall

Taping and mudding (also known as "floating") drywall is an art unto itself. Knowing how to properly tape and mud your drywall can ensure that your home's walls will look professionally installed and finished. Your greatest asset during this process is either professional help or patience if you decide to do this on your own. Forcing yourself to wait between coats and apply the proper number of coats to your drywall will help ensure a beautiful end product.

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1. We first start off by applying mesh tape to the seams of the drywall. We apply the tape in a straight line to ensure that the seams are totally covered. First we cover the vertical seams, then the horizontal seams, and finally the corners. It is important here to avoid overlapping the tape. Instead, we always make sure to cut the tape where one layer would overlap another layer.

2. Next, we use the drywall knife to apply a layer of joint compound over the mesh tape. We first apply the compound over the vertical seams, then the horizontal, and finally the corners. Just don't leave any excess compound on the walls and use the drywall knife to create the thinnest layer of compound at the edges of the application. This process, known as "feathering," and helps ensure a seamless application of compound. To put joint compound on the corners, we use the knife to apply the compound to first one side, then the other.

3. We then cover all screws with a layer of joint compound and allow the compound to dry for 24 hours, then repeat the process in step 2. All drywall experts use a larger knife this time to spread the compound out farther along the wall.

4. Last but not least, we lightly sand the joint compound and vacuum the walls a vacuum to remove saw dust.

5. In order to finish the job, we apply a final coat of joint compound. Again, we use a larger drywall knife to feather the joint compound as far away from the original seams as possible.

When we have finished applying the final coat of joint compound, we use a paint roller to cover the entire area with a skim coat. This will help cover any remaining marks where the joint compound was applied.

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