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Cracked Seams in Drywall

Howdy from Earthquake Country!

We just bought a 1959 Ranch style home in the SF bay area. We have a post and pier foundation that includes some adjustable screw jacks. The house was a probate sale so there is limited information on the house history. Over ~50 years the house has sunk an inch or less in places (we are also on fill dirt) resulting in the drywall cracking along the seams. Our cracks appear where the drywall is taped ...amongst other places. The walls are also textured with knockout texture which makes patch jobs a pain.

We attempted to retape and mud some of the seams but a recent earthquake damaged our tape job before we even finished. Given our zip code, we have a feeling we are going to become experts, ha, ha.

What is the best way to go about repairing these cracks? I am thinking latex painters caulking may allow more flexibility in the corners and around the ceilings. I want to conceal the cracks as much as possible - as I know they will reappear thanks to our shifting soil. Is there another product that might work better?

Any suggestions, we are trying to avoid repeated rework...


Re: Cracked Seams in Drywall

sometimes it works well to live in the hurricane area things could be worse like having the ground move below your feet.

your texture would be called a knockdown not a knockout though I'm sure you kind of feel that way after dealing with some of the patches. If you use a 60 grit and sand the paint and texture off the surrounding area before you do your patch you will find that helpful in blending it in with the surrounding area. a knockdown texture is achieved by spraying on globs of mud on the wall using the biggest tip on a hopper gun then waiting a couple of minutes then taking a wide drywall knife and holding it just about flat to the wall and wiping it across the wall and that is what gives you that look. the size of the globs is determined by air flow and thickness of the mud. a hopper gun would cost anywhere from about 70 dollars at lowes to around 100 dollars for a real good one at a drywall supplier.

Re: Cracked Seams in Drywall

EARTHQUAKE REGION!?!?! REPAIR DRYWALL CRACKS!?!?! problem is ur always gonna have those cracks, IF YOU KEEP REPAIRING.

the only prevention is to rehang the drywall w/ the new techniques we have. the onld style of hanging drywall was to make it very tight against the framing.....well the experts came to find out that's not right.....what we do now is called "FLOATING DRYWALL". it's mostly attached w/ Glue and very few screws (someday soon it will be all glue)the point is to use the least amount of screws possible and let the glue hold it, which the glue also acts as a shock absorber. very hard to get in detail about it.....but it's takin' me years of new training to accomplish this new feat, there's also new things like the cornerbeads and stuff we use. But it's not widely known or used yet because it's so hard for contractors to deal w/ change, plus it is about 10 - 20% more cost than average drywall....but the professional drywallers that offer this service can almost guarantee lifetime warranty....but it would only be in words....since none of us r around for a lifetime HAHAHa

Re: Cracked Seams in Drywall

Thanks Guys. I appreciate your replies.

Ahh yes, it is knockdown not knockout. (30 yr old chick here, so just learning) Sanding around the areas sounds like a good idea. =)

My Dad keeps telling me I should rip all the drywall out and reinstall new. I think we might go room by room on this one. Maybe that is the best thing to do with the new glue method. I will check into it. Thanks again.

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