Let's patch things up

Let's patch things up

A big hole in the wall doesn’t have to be a big pain in the…. well, pocket, amongst other things. Here’s our top tips on quickly, easily and cost effectively fixing a damaged wall or repairing crumbling plaster walls.

All plaster walls need a bit of TLC after a while. The general wear and tear over time, means you can get anything and everything from minor scratches to ugly doorknob dents to great big unmissable holes. 

If you have a damaged wall, then the best thing you can do is not just leave it, or artfully arrange your furniture to cover it up and pretend it’s not there. 

And the good news is that if you don’t know how to patch a wall or how to stop plaster crumbling off walls then we can help, with our quick, smart and simple wall repair steps. So, if your damaged wall looks ugly, or is stopping you from starting painting, wallpapering or tiling, then it’s time to crack on.



Getting ready


Before you start your wall patch, first get a dust sheet down and take a closer look at the damaged area for any loose or crumbling plaster coming away from the wall.

Remember – look out for any nails or screws first. You might want to take them out, or make sure they’re not sticking out. And there might be cables or pipes behind there, so before you cut into the wall to clean things out, have a quick check with a cable detector.

Cut out any large pieces of broken or loose plaster with a utility knife or scraper, then sand the area with medium-grit sandpaper to get any loose plaster and dust off. Then just wipe the area down with a damp cloth to clear away the dust. 

Then you’re going to need to prime the area with diluted PVA mix so when you come to fix a plaster wall the new plaster sticks. 

Time to apply yourself


If you want to know how to repair small holes in plaster walls, then look no further we have the steps for you. 

Grab your trowel and a putty knife or scraper and apply a generous amount of plaster to the damaged wall you want to apply your repair patch to. 

Be careful to fill in all the edges, so there’s no exposed cracks left. That way, you can make sure you give the plaster a nice finish.

If the damaged area with plaster crumbling off a wall is deeper than 3mm, you’ll need a layer or two of plaster repair to reduce the depth first.

If you need to fix a large hole in the wall you might need some fibreglass mesh tape to cover the hole first.

Alright, NOW you can leave it


You’ll want to wait about 4 to 5 hours to make sure your plaster properly dries. But that doesn’t mean you can slack off… During this downtime make sure you keep checking in on the plaster to see that it’s keeping its form – and by that we mean it’s still lovely and smooth and there’s no cheeky wee bubbles popping up. 

Finally, once it’s good and dried out, make sure you dust off any leftover plaster particles. You can use a lighter sandpaper to smooth it out, then give the surface a final once over with a damp cloth.

You’re almost good to go with the decorating. Just one last step - give it a quick coating with a sealer to finish things off.

And that’s how to repair plaster walls.

Here are the tools you’ll need to repair crumbling plaster walls or fix a large hole in the wall.

  • Safety goggles
  • Protective gloves
  • Dust mask
  • Cable detector
  • Utility knife
  • Scraper
  • Brush
  • Spirit level

And all the materials you should have to hand to repair plaster walls 

  • Ready to use plaster repair and skim
  • Dust sheet
  • Coarse grade sandpaper
  • Medium grade sandpaper
  • Diluted PVA adhesive
  • Plaster repair (for bigger holes, deeper than 3mm)
  • Fibreglass mesh tape (again for bigger holes)
  • Sealer

One last thing – please stay safe. Wear your goggles, protect your skin. If you get any plaster on your skin, wash it off before it dries. And if the hole is up high (otherwise known as “suspicious teenage party activity”), use your stepladder, not that wonky old stool from the kitchen.

As ever you can find all the trade-quality paint, tools, and materials you need from expert, local trade merchants in your area on our online DIY shop. Good luck!