How to Repair a Drywall Crack

Make unsightly flaws in your walls disappear.

Eventually even the best-built houses develop a few cracks due to settling, usually around doors and windows. Learn how to fix them the right way, so they don’t come back.

By the DIY experts of The Family Handyman Magazine

3-Step wall repair

As homes settle, cracks may radiate from the corners of doors and windows. Whether your walls are made of plaster or drywall, you can repair the cracks in two steps over a day or two—and get the area ready to sand and paint. Use paper tape; it's stronger than fiberglass tape for wall repairs. For cracks more than 1/4 in. deep, clean out the loose material and use a quick-setting crack filler like Durabond to build up the area level with the wall. Then use the steps shown in Photos 2 and 3 to fix it.

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Required Tools for this Project

Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.

  • Dust mask
  • Mud pan
  • Painters tape
  • Taping knife
  • Utility knife

Required Materials for this Project

Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here's a list.

  • Paper drywall tape
  • Pre-mixed joint compound
  • Setting type compound