Now, that we have covered basic drywall knowledge, back to Drywall Cracks, other than settling cracks… Today I am going to discuss some of the other things that could be causing those nasty little cracks in your beautiful home.

One major cause of drywall cracking is quite simply improper installation of the drywall, and in particular errors in taping and application of the joint compound. If the seams between the drywall sheets are not correctly taped and sanded down with joint compound, the sheets can move resulting in the tape cracking.

Drywall is susceptible to cracking due to improper support preparation, installation, loss of support, or movement of the supporting structure. Improper support could be loose or misaligned studs or other framing members. Other problems with installation may include improper fastener spacing, not enough or improperly mixed compound, etc.  Movement of the supporting structure may occur due to normal flexing of the structure under service loads. Drywall cracking movement can also be caused by normal thermal or moisture-related shrinkage or swelling of the wood studs or other support members relative to the drywall itself.

Cracks along corners where the ceiling meets the walls can sometimes be attributed to the installer screwed the drywall (on the ceiling) too close to the wall, this doesn’t allow the drywall to flex when the roof truss moves and this in turn creates a ceiling crack.

Another cause along the same lines could be an instance where the joint compound has been applied too thickly, the layer on top dries first while the lower layer takes more time. This causes surface cracks.

The pattern of the cracks can help you determine whether they have been caused by paint. If the cracks are fine and spread over a large part of the wall and resemble a crushed egg shell, they might have been caused by incorrect application of paint.

You, the homeowner, may cause cracks without meaning to.  By hanging extremely heavy objects on the wall, a new stress point can lead to the wall developing cracks due to the stress caused. Such cracks are not always visible and can stay hidden for a long time before they are eventually discovered. Unfortunately, this might be when the oversized object crashes to the ground because the wall anchor it was attached to has given way, unable to bear the stress.

As a general rule, when you hang an object on a wall, first consider the weight of the item.  If the item you are hanging weighs more than 5 pounds, then you are going to need to locate a stud to hang the item on.  If the item weighs more than 10 pounds You absolutely need to locate a stud.  If you simply use a wall hanger you will find that the weight will cause stress on the wall which will eventually lead to cracking and then more severe cracking and eventually the item falling off of the wall.   The primary problem with the weight related cracks is that the oftem remain hidden until it is too late, and by that I mean the item has already hit the floor before you know there is a problem.  If you have some items that might be pushing the weight limits, it’s a good idea to routinely remove the item from the wall and check the wall for any hairline cracks that may be beginning.

Keeping these additional causes of cracked drywall in mind can help you to spot and resolve the problem as soon as it arises. Acting swiftly and quickly will help save you time and expenses that might crop up if the problem is ignored in the initial stages. It is never a good idea to put off minor home maintenance chores, as they tend to turn into larger, more expensive jobs the longer they are put off.  So if you see any cracks in your drywall that need repair, call Andy onCall and one of our expert handymen will be out to give you a quote and timeframe for you drywall repair. Remember all of our handymen are licensed, bonded and have the technical skills required to handle any drywall repair you need taken care of.