So you are getting ready to move out of your apartment and you desperately need to get your damage deposit back. But first you need to fix that ugly hole in the living room wall—the one you covered with the velvet Elvis painting.
There are many causes of cracks, holes, dents, and blemishes to drywall—from careless visitors to nail pops. But there is only one real solution to repair them—with the proper spackle!
You know nothing about spackle. And your wife wants you to repair all the damaged walls this weekend. What is a newbie do-it-yourselfer to do? What is the best spackle for drywall?
The good news is that there several very good spackle products on the market. The right one for you depends on your exact needs. Do you need a fast-drying product? Do you need one that covers a large area or a deep hole? Maybe you need one that doesn’t require a primer?
Or maybe you need a product that tells you when it is dry? Or one that can patch wood, cement or tile in addition to drywall? Maybe you need the product in a tub rather than a tube?
So here are four great spackle products that you should seriously consider depending on your needs:
1. 3M Patch Plus Primer
3M Patch Plus Primer is a spackle compound product that packs spackle and primer in one easy to use product.
That means 3M has eliminated the need to paint the area with primer before painting. It based on the latest 3M technology which is extremely fast drying—much faster than any other spackle.
Fast drying means a lot more holes can be repaired in a shorter amount of time.
3M Patch Plus Primer dries the fastest. Most jobs will be dry in 30 minutes or less. If you have a lot of small repairs to make in a short amount of time, it is the best.
2. DAP Crack shot Interior/Exterior Spackling Paste
DAP Crack Shot Spackling Paste is a high-performance professional-grade spackle compound that is well suited for both interior and exterior patch jobs.
The product is particularly good for patching walls with small dents, scratches, nicks, and holes.
It is a good, basic all-round spackle and costs less than most of the other spackles.
DAP Crack Shot is the most economical in the category. So if you are pinching your pennies, it is the best choice.
3. DAP DryDex Spackling Paste
DAP DryDex Spackling is another spackle compound product that is well suited for both interior and exterior patch jobs.
But DryDex has one big difference from the other spackle products.
It has a patent-pending way of indicating when it is thoroughly dry. When the product is applied it is pink in color and changes its color to white to indicate it is thoroughly dry!
A patch that is painted before the spackle is thoroughly dry will fail. So many users love this “fail-safe” color change mechanism in DryDex to indicate the patch is dry.
DAP DryDex is the best at indicating when it is thoroughly dry.
That feature alone will save you from the biggest failure of spackle do-it-yourselfers—painting over wet spackle. And of all the spackles, it is the easiest to use.
But buy it in the tub container since it is extremely difficult to squeeze spackle out of the tube.
4. DAP Flexall Wall Repair
DAP Flexall isn’t really a spackle compound.
It is actually a filler that can be used as a spackle. Because it is a filler it dries much harder than any of the other spackle compound products reviewed.
And it can be used on many materials other than drywall.Of all the products reviewed here, it is the best suited to cover large surfaces and fill deep holes. It can also be used to stop water leaks in skylights, roofs, and rain gutters.
DAP FlexAll is the best for covering large surfaces or filling deep holes. It also can be used for more than just drywall. But it takes the longest time to dry.
Which of these four products is the best spackle for drywall for that hole in your wall? Well, it really depends on your exact needs. With the exhaustive reviews and comments about each product, you should now be able to pick your desired one.
And don’t worry! If you only have a small nail pop, crack or hole to cover, then they all will do a great job!
How to Use The Best Drywall Tape
Drywall taping is an easy job if you know how to do it. If not, it can ruin your day.
The basic is that you have to put drywall joint compound first on the surface and place the tape and after that, you need more layers of the joint compound before you sand and finish the work.
Here are the steps in detail to put the best drywall tape -
1. Clean the surface area
Wipe the surface area with a clean and dry cloth. You can use a soft brush instead of the cloth.
Either way, you need to make sure that there is no dirt left on the surface where you are going to put the drywall tape.
2. Apply Joint Compound on the Wall
Use a putty knife for applying the joint compound evenly on the wall.
Remember that if you leave any space without applying joint compound underneath the tape, it will come out of the wall after a while.
If you are doing it yourself, you must be careful of that.
3. Place the Drywall Tape on
After an even bead of drywall joint compound, place the tape on the surface. You should place it in a manner so that there is no bubble left below the tape.
4. Joint Compound on the Tape
Now, after you place the tape, you need to apply the joint compound on the tape.
When applying the joint compound, you need to make sure that you apply it evenly. You will need to use three to five beads of drywall joint compound depending on your skills and ability.
If you can not apply the compound evenly, you have to wait for the bead to dry and sand. After that, you can go for a second bead.
If you have followed all of the procedures, you just need to wait for the joint compound to dry out.
After is dried up, you can sand the additional gypsum compound out of the surface before you paint or do anything on the surface.
We have researched for the best drywall tape on the market and found only two which we can recommend for you.
So, instead of making a full review of just two (where you do not have enough options to compare one with another), I am including product links here.
How to Use Spackle on a Wall
Using spackle to repair your wall is easy and fun to do. But when you plan to do the work by yourself, you need to follow these steps for a perfect repair.
1. Prepare the Wall
Before you break the seal of the spackling compound, you should prepare the wall for applying repairing paste on it.
Remove any damaged cement, debris, sand, paint, or other things which are attached to the wall.
Spackle work best on the naked wall, so try to remove all extra things attached to the wall.
2. Mix the Compound
Almost all of the spackles come with different materials and you need to mix those before application.
Follow the product manual for the effective mixture of the repair material.
3. Apply the Spackle
After mixing the compound correctly, apply the material on the wall. Fix smaller holes first and large holes later so that you don't forget about tiny holes on the wall in the latter part of the repair work.
4. Polish and Paint
When you finish up with the above steps, you now need to wait until the compound is dried up. This is a really important step as if you proceed further without drying the compound, the patch will not work.
After the wall is dried up, you can now polish the wall and paint it according to your wishes.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is Spackle Toxic
No, not really. Spackle is not toxic when you apply that in the prescribed manner.
You should take extra precaution when sanding the dry spackle before painting or for any other work. Inhaling those substances from the air can be harmful to your lungs.
The human lung can filter out a small amount of those substances but exposer to a whole lot of spackle dust can be harmful.
I will recommend using N95 masks when using any type of chemical works.
Is Spackle Waterproof
In most of the cases, spackles are not waterproof. Exposure to the water or any other liquid material can affect the durability of the spackle.
To be 100% sure about that, you should see the product materials by which it is made. If the manufacturer makes waterproof spackle, he will highlight that feature for sure.
What is Spackle Made of?
Spackle is made of gypsum powder and other binding chemicals. Different manufacturers use different types of materials for making spackle but the primary material is the same in all.
Gypsum powder along with company-specific binders results in a perfect spackling compound.
What is Spackle Used For?
Spackle is used for various types of works. The primary use of the spackling paste is to patch small cracks or holes in the wall.
Apart from patching defective walls, the spackling paste can be used for hiding dents and defects from the surface.
It can be used as a temporary solution for the cracks and holes which are to be filled with caulks or grout.
Can You Use Spackle Instead of Joint Compound?
Yes, You can use spackle and joint compound inter-changeably.
Joint compound is convenient for sanding while spackle is not quite convenient material for using a drywall sander.
Do You Need To Prime Over Spackle?
Yes, if you want to hide the dent or hole of the wall. Using finisher at the top of the spackle will make a visible patch on the wall.
If you want your wall to look good and well-finished, then using primer over spackle is a must.
What is The Difference Between Spackle and Plaster?
Plaster is used for covering the concrete wall. This is a mixer of cement, sand and other binding materials. Plaster is a convenient material for using in a massive area.
On the other hand, Spackle is used mainly for repair work. It is convenient for small holes and cracks. Its work is to bind the two separated part together like new. This material is not good for using in a big area like the whole outdoor wall.
How Long Should I Wait to Paint after Spackling?
You can paint over the spackle after 2 hours. For best outcome of the paint, you can wait another 2 hours to completely dry out the spackle.
After the spackle is dried out completely, softly sand over the spackled area and paint it.
Is Spackle as Strong as DryWall?
Generally, spackle is stronger than drywall. Spackle is made for repair work and it has the power to bind on a dry surface without any friction.
How Can I Speed Up Spackle Drying?
Simple hot air can do it faster than usual. But it is recommended to let it dry in normal weather condition so that it does not break inside with excessive heat.
If you have no time and have to dry it out instantly, you can use a fan or a hair dryer to blow hot air. This way the drying process will be a lot faster than normal.