drywall imperfections after priming

Drywall Imperfections After Priming: Everything You Need to Know

Have you ever encountered drywall imperfections after priming? If so, you are not the only victim, as this is common, especially for DIYers and first-timers. According to Wikipedia, drywall is a panel constructed from gypsum combined with fiber and additives to lessen its flammability and water absorption. Today, we learn why these imperfections occur and how they can be fixed through an easy-to-follow guide. To start the learning process, let’s understand the drywall imperfections and tips on how they can be corrected or avoided beforehand. A top-tier level of drywall finish specified in the Gypsum Association guide is achievable if the drywall is installed appropriately.

What are drywall imperfections?

Drywall imperfections are defects or mistakes encountered after the drywall’s installation. Often, these imperfections are noticed after priming has been done. Drywall imperfections occur during the preparation and installation process of the drywall. We shall review more on this when we look at the causes of drywall imperfections. For now, let’s look at the tools and the process of how to fix drywall imperfections after priming.

How to fix drywall Imperfections after priming

Tools needed

Here are the tools needed for this project.

  • Putty knife.
  • Scraper.
  • All-purpose drywall mud
  • Primer.
  • 150-grit sandpaper.
  • 220-grit sandpaper.
  • Mud knives.
  • Mud can
  • Roller

Step 1

The first step to fixing drywall imperfections after priming is to scrape off any loose primer along the spots that are chipped or seem differently textured. This first step is done using a putty knife or a scrapper. The trick for this step is to avoid digging deeper into the pits to achieve a smoother surface. Instead, grab a piece of cloth and clean off dust that arose from the scraping process.

Step 2

This step involves smoothening the areas around the drywall dents or debris to enhance a seamless surface. A good result is achieved when the parts of the drywall around the pit spots are also dealt with. A scraper and a piece of soft cloth can be used for this process.

Step 3

The next step is to prepare and apply the all-purpose drywall mud. Pour the drywall mud onto the mud can and use the putty knife to dab the mud onto the pits or parts of the surface that need fixing and spread it properly. Ensure you leave an equal spread out of the mud on the wall.

Step 4

Once the drywall mud has been applied, it is time to let it set and dry out completely. This process depends on the temperature of the location. Giving it 12 to 24 hours for it to fully heal is ideal.

Step 5

Sand down the dried resurfaced areas where the drywall mud was applied. Start with 150-grit sandpaper to remove any ridges and smoothen the feathering ends. Finish up 200-grit sandpaper to blend the patched areas with the rest of the wall. To sand, after the primer has been used, circle gently towards the outer edges of the patches to avoid further chipping and ridging.

Step 6

Carry out a final investigation of the repaired surface to ensure no sunken parts and protruding surfaces on the entire wall. If there is, sand them down to provide a linear proportion of the wall. Ensure there is no tape showing through the primer. If that is the case, apply more joint compound and let dry before moving on to the next step.

Step 7

This last process involves priming the entire wall. Then, with a roller, prime the whole surface that had drywall imperfections. This process is done to achieve a similar texture throughout the drywall. This step also helps the top coat to adhere well when painted.

What are the causes of drywall imperfections?

So, what causes drywall imperfections, and why do they occur after priming? Here are typical drywall flaws and their speedy fixes.

Screws are driven too deep

Sometimes, one can be slightly overwhelmed and drive the screws to dip while hanging the drywall. This occurrence breaks the surface of the drywall, changing the texture and finish of the drywall. It also weakens the holding power of the screw. To solve this issue, drive the screw head for a quarter, or a half turn when you get to the surface of the drywall. This precaution can also be aided by setting the drill clutch.

Too much sanding

Another cause of drywall imperfection occurs during the sanding process. The drywall can be over-sanded when trying to achieve a smoother surface finish. Unfortunately, when over sanding occurs, one risks sanding into the fiberglass tape. To solve this, use a light system placed strategically at a low angle while sanding. The light will guide you by reflecting on bumps and uneven seams that require more sanding.

Tight joints

This following imperfection occurs when trying to fix two joints. Having two joints that are too tight is a common occurrence during drywall installation. Having joints too tight will result in the breaking of the drywall. Solving this mishap is ideal for tackling the situation beforehand during installations. Always keep an eighth of an inch space between drywall sheets. This space facilitates the sheet’s expansion and contraction as the weather changes. A guide along the installation process could also help you avoid the issue.

The drywall and the wall outlet have misaligned

If you are a first-time DIYer, facing drywall installation issues around the electrical boxes or other outlets is one typical overkill. However, there are several solutions to this issue. One common solution is using lipstick or chalk to mark the correct measurements on the sheet. To do this, the lipstick is applied to the edge of the electrical box. Next, the drywall is pressed against the box, so the lipstick is marked onto the sheet.

The second solution is using a unique magnetic tool, a Blindmark. The special tool uses a magnet to sit tight onto the space to be cut out. Let’s explore more tips for making elegant drywall while avoiding having drywall imperfections.


Here are a few crucial tips to make fixing drywall imperfections a breeze.

  • For areas with multiple holes or patches that need to be filled up, it is not recommended to fill these dents individually. This method is tough and will prove challenging to attain outstanding results. Instead, skim-coat over primer areas with numerous holes using a broader taping knife and an all-purpose joint compound to obtain good results.
  • Before filling up the holes left by nails or drywall anchors with a patching solution, remove any ridges from the holes using a scraper. Alternatively, making a dent in the spot before filling it achieves similar results. However, remember not to create a mark that is too deep.
  • Use a self-priming filler to save you the hassle of having to repaint with a primer. This trick saves time and prevents the patched areas from showing through the final top coat.
  • For a middle-sized hole, it is ideal to have them patched with a stick-on mesh patch. These stick-on mesh products are available in a home improvement store. The stick-on patch is placed over the hole and covered with three thin layers of joint compound.
  • Repainted the patched areas with a primer ensures adherence to the top coat and the same feel and texture as the other areas of the wall.
  • Feathering the joint compound at least 1 inch at the areas where the patching ends is recommended to ensure a seamless wall continuation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you sand mud after primer?

Yes, sanding after a primer has been applied ensures a smoother surface by eliminating brush marks and traces of drywall fiber. In addition, it allows a chance to fix all the imperfections before applying the final topcoat.

Will primer hide drywall imperfections?

No, imperfections in drywall cannot be concealed by a coat of primer. In rare circumstances, the defects may become more noticeable if the surface isn’t sanded and made smooth before the priming process. Always plan and consider this.

Can you paint drywall?

Yes, drywall can be painted only after using a premium acrylic latex primer.

Is priming drywall necessary?

Yes, priming drywall is necessary for new drywall installed using a primer for new drywall. This action helps the drywall medium adhere and adequately absorb the paint’s color and also helps to ensure the color is not affected by changes in the room temperature.


With the proper technique, occurrences of drywall imperfections after priming can be avoided beforehand through prior planning and following the manufacturer’s instructions. A rule of thumb is to continuously learn through the mistakes and eventually try to avoid them when you have a chance of working on a similar project once more. Drywall installation is a technique that can be learned. This situation is due to the availability of various learning instructional guides and the high price and inaccessibility of drywall experts, among other factors. It is always recommended to repair any noticeable imperfections before moving on to the following process. Doing this will ensure you achieve a cleaner and top-tier drywall primer finish.


  • https://diy.stackexchange.com/questions/102151/whats-the-reason-to-sand-after-priming
  • https://dengarden.com/home-improvement/Tips-for-Painting-New-Drywall-Like-A-Pro
  • https://dropbymyhouse.com/drywall-imperfections-after-priming/
  • https://homeguides.sfgate.com/best-air-purifying-plants-13771628.html
  • https://peppershomeandgarden.com/fix-drywall-patch-marks-showing-through-paint/

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