Fixing Nail Holes In Walls - (2023)

How To Fill Nail Holes In Your Wall

Fix Small Nail Holes in Walls FAST, AND Make Them Disappear

Whether your holes were caused by a small nail, screw, dry-wall anchor, or other random item, here is the simple process for filling them fast!

Start by using either the backside of a hammer , a screwdriver , or a needle-nose pliers to remove your hardware from the wall. Pull straight out from the wall to reduce the risk of creating a bigger hole to fill.

Removing screws or dry wall anchors will likely cause the drywall to slightly protrude outward. Use the sanding cap on the All-In-One Small Hole Repair Tool to smooth the drywall down as much as possible.

Next, remove the cap and squeeze a generous amount of filler into the open holes. Then use the putty knife on the other end of the tool to scrape off any excess. If your hole is large, you may need to repeat this fill+scrape process a few times until the contours of the hole are flush with the wall.

For tiny holes, you can likely sand right away. However, larger holes that require more putty will need an hour or so of drying time before sanding. Using the sanding cap again, remove any excess putty on top of and around the hole.

TIP! If after sanding, your hole is not perfectly flush with the wall, repeat with more putty+scraping+sanding.

Once your hole is filled, flush, and dry, paint the patch job with a small brush or roller. If your paint is a perfect match and you used the same roller type as the existing paint treatment, your paint and patch job should be undetectable once fully dry!

Sanding The Spackle And Wiping It Off

  • 1Sand the spackle slightly to remove the top layer. Use a fine grade sanding sponge or paper to slightly rough up the top layer of spackle. Dont push too hard into the spackle or try to make it flush with the wall, or you could leave a shiny spot that is hard to cover up, especially on textured walls.XResearch source
  • You can find sanding sponges or papers at most hardware stores.
  • 2Dampen a large sponge with warm water. Pick up a large, soft sponge used for grouting or tile work. Run it under the sink using warm water until the entire thing is wet, and then wring out the excess.XResearch source
  • Look for these soft sponges at a hardware store near you.

    Tip: If your sponge is still dripping water, its too wet. Wring it out again until it isnt dripping anymore.

  • 3Rub the sponge over the spackle to take off the top layer. Swipe the sponge back and forth over the spackle on your wall until it disappears completely. Clean off the surrounding area of your wall if you notice any white dust from the sanding.XResearch source
  • Water breaks down the top layers of the spackle, but your sponge wont be wet enough to dampen the spackle in the nail hole.
  • 4Dry off the area with a clean cloth. Finish off your wall by making the area look clean and dry with a cloth. Make sure there isnt any spackle left on the wall so the area looks smooth without any evidence of the previous hole.XResearch sourceAdvertisement

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    How Do You Fill Nail Holes Using Soap

    Using soap to fill nail holes in drywall is a last resort should you not have spackle, toothpaste, or glue on-hand. It is an easy, albeit temporary fix that is meant for quick touch-up jobs that you intend to redo in the future.

    Simply take the bar of soap and rub it over the hole. Keep rubbing until the hole is filled and then wipe off any excess with a slightly damp cloth.

    If you do not want to paint afterward, instead of using a white bar, choose one in a similar shade to your wall color.

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    Diy Ways To Fill Nail Holes

    There are a multitude of DIY ways to fill nail holes. Of course, like other do-it-yourself projects, there are shortcuts for a quick fix and methods to actually repair the wall. If you are moving into a home with holes, chances are pretty good that you want these holes filled properly. However, if you are moving out of an apartment or rental home, and simply want the walls to look good to get your security deposit back, there are a few tricks you can use to achieve this. That may sound awful, but very few people are going to invest much time on a place they are leaving.

    Wall Putty

    This is a super-easy fix, if you do not mind going to the closest home improvement store first. Buy a small tube of wall putty. Dab a tiny amount on an old knife or the end of your finger and push the putty into the hole. You only need a dab. If you get some on the surrounding area , just use an old damp cleaning rag to wipe it away. When it is dry, you can use a small painting brush from the craft store and brush a little paint over the hole. You do not have to buy a gallon of paint. A bottle of acrylic art paint that closely matches your wall color will do just fine. After all, it is a very tiny hole.

    Ivory Soap

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    Dry Sand And Prime The Drywall

    Fixing Nail Holes In Walls - (1)

    Allow the joint compound to dry for two to four hours. Apply a second coat of joint compound. If the patch is not blending in well with the surrounding wall, use a broad feathering knife to draw a wide, thin coat farther out on the wall.

    Inspect the area. Joint compound shrinks when it dries, so it may be necessary to apply a third coat. Lightly sand the area with fine-grit sandpaper. Apply primer to the repair area, then paint.

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    What Youll Need To Learn How To Fix Nail Holes In Apartment Walls

    If you want to fix nail holes in an apartment wall, youre going to need a few things first. The tools mentioned in this post can be found at any hardware store. Theyre useful for any reason you might need to patch up a hole in a wall.

    First, youre going to need sandpaper to smooth the wall. Youll need some spackle and a trowel to fill in the hole. For larger holes in the wall, you may need a wall patch as well.

    The good news is that many hardware stores might even have all of these items sold together as a wall repair kit, so be sure to ask for assistance at the store to save yourself time, and possibly money.

    You will also need a paintbrush and paint that matches the rest of the apartment walls. Otherwise, you might end up with parts of a wall that dont match the rest of the apartment. Most hardware and paint supply stores can easily color match so once all the repairs are done, you wont notice where you did the handiwork.

    Keep in mind that the idea is to make your apartment look the same way it did when you moved in. You should be trying to get as close to this goal as possible throughout the process.

    What Do You Use To Fill Nail Holes In Drywall

    The best way to fill nail holes in drywall is by using spackle. All you need to do is put some spackling on a putty knife and apply it to the hole.

    Then, take the straight edge of the knife and scrape away any excess putty from the wall. Or you can simply go over it with a damp cloth once the spackle has dried .

    I recommend sanding the spackle with a fine-grit sandpaper. This will ensure the plaster is flush with the drywall, so it is less noticeable.

    This is especially helpful if you plan not to paint afterward. Just make sure the spackle is completely dry before sanding and do not press too hard. Otherwise, you could over-sand the hole and leave a dent in the surface area.

    To keep costs down, you can make your own homemade filler. Simply combine 4 tablespoons of flour with 1/3 tablespoon of salt.

    Then, blend the two ingredients with a little primer to create a paste. Apply the paste to the nail hole and allow it to dry fully.

    Finish by going over the area with fine-grit sandpaper or an orbital sander until the filler is flush with the drywall surface.

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    Cut The Drywall Around The Hole

    The drywall patch needs to be larger than the hole because most drywall holes are irregularly shaped, so the hole will need to be cut larger and into a regular shape before it can be patched. Hold the cut piece of drywall up to the wall so that it covers the hole entirely, then use a pencil to trace the border around the piece of drywall. Use a drywall saw to cut the hole to the size and shape of the patch by following the traced pencil line.

    How To Repair Your Drywall: Small Holes Dings And Nail Pops

    Quick Fix: How-To Repair Nail Holes in your Walls

    Whether you rent or own, holes, cracks and nail pops in your drywall can happen, but fixing them is easy. Heres how.

    Covering up unsightly holes and marks on your wall is easier than you might think.

    Are you renting an apartment and trying to fix those nail holes in the drywall to get your deposit back? Did someone in your home accidentally put a hole in the wall? Whatever the case may be, whether youre renting an apartment or own a house, drywall damage is common.

    Luckily, repairing typical damage to your drywall, like smaller holes and nail pops, is easy.

    Bring your home up to speed with the latest on automation, security, utilities, networking and more.

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    What You Need To Fill Nail Holes

    There are lots of ways to fill nails holes in your walls, but if youre looking to get the job done with the least amount of time, effort, and supplies, here is what you need:

  • 3M All-In-One Small Hole Repair Tool This one item has everything you need: putty, scraper, and sander in one handy, inexpensive tube!
  • Matching Paint Usually, small test jars are more than enough.
  • Paint Brush or Small Roller
  • Its important that you consider the existing paint texture on your walls when determining what paint application method to use. If your walls are super textured or your nail holes are small, a paint brush is likely sufficient. If you need to cover larger areas and/or your walls were painted smooth or with a slight texture, make sure you use a roller with the matching texture.

    Use The Kit In 4 Steps:

  • First, hand-sand around the hole to smooth any rough spots. Wipe off any sanding dust with a damp cloth.
  • Then cut a piece of fiberglass mesh to overlap the hole by at least 1 in. on all sides. Peel off the paper backing and press the mesh to the wall.
  • Spread a layer of spackling compound over the patch with a 6-in. drywall knife.
  • Let it dry overnight, sand lightly, then apply a second thin layer. If needed, apply a third skim coat after the second one dries.

    Note: Use a 6-in. drywall knife to smear spackling compound through the mesh and over each hole. Let the compound dry, then sand lightly.

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    Start Your Apartment Wall Repair Today

    The only way youll learn more about how to fix nail holes in apartment walls is by doing it. Its easy to do and no one will ever notice the difference. And its an easy way to make sure you get your security deposit back.

    And when youre ready for your next apartment, look no further than Icon apartments right here in Louisville, Kentucky. Our location and amenities make us a great option for both students and full-time workers.

    Check our availability today and see what we can do for you.

    Cut And Install The Support

    Fixing Nail Holes In Walls - (2)

    • Cut a 1 x 3-inch piece of scrap lumber or 3/4-inch piece of plywood approximately 2 to 4 inches longer than the height of the patch.
    • Screw these supports vertically behind the opening using drywall screws. This will help keep the patch from cracking.
    • Sink the heads of the screws slightly below the surface of the drywall.

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    How To Nail In Walls To Avoid More Damage

    Now, if you are looking for ways to avoid any damage to your wall and keep it safe from any harm, I have listed some easy steps that you can follow to get the job done right.

    • Firstly, mark the exact point where you need the nail to be hammered.
    • Then, use a cardboard sheet to hold the nail in place and keep it fixed.
    • If not cardboard, you can also opt for a comb, hairpins, or pliers.
    • Align the nail over the mark and hammer with a gentle hand.
    • Once the nail is inside the wall and can stay on its own, you can remove the cardboard.
    • You can hammer until the nail is entirely in its place.

    Other than this, if you see any nail that is popped out of a stud due to not being secure, I would suggest you never use a hammer to force it back in as it will only worsen the condition of the wall. You can get the nail out and place it at a different point to secure it properly.

    You can check out our recommended tools to further help you with your task.

    How To Fix A Hole In The Wall Quickly And Easily

    Whether they are made by accident or not, or theyre small or large, holes in a wall can be unsightly. Learning how to fix a hole in the wall is an easy enough skill even for a novice to tackle. It doesnt require many tools until you get to the super big holes, and for small- to medium-sized holes, you dont need to know much about drywall.

    Our guide gives you steps on how to fill holes in your wall from tiny nail holes to much larger patches. So dont worry if a doorknob or a toy slams too hard into your wall its all fixable.

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    How To Fix Nail Holes In Walls With Toothpaste

    Handyman’s World Editorial TeamHandyman’s World is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

    If youve got nail holes in your wall, you might be wondering exactly how to fill them. Sure, some spackle or caulking would be the usual methods, but maybe you just dont have these things on hand.

    It is technically possible to fill nail holes in walls using toothpaste. This is exactly what we are going to teach you to do today.

    What Do Professional Painters Use To Fill Nail Holes

    How to Fix Small Holes | Drywall Repair

    If you want to do it like the pros, ensure you know exactly how they do it and what they use to fill the nail holes. Most professional painters go for a putty as they fill the nail holes.

    Putty is an oil-based product made with ground chalk and linseed oil. You can use it efficiently while filling the nail holes, and it works just as fine. Follow the steps below to ensure you do it the right way.

    Step 1: Take a small chunk of the putty.Step 2: Put it over the nail hole.Step 3: Use your thumb to push it over the hole with a bit of force. Step 4: Cutthe excess putty and flatten it out using a flat material. Step 5: Coat it with a primer and then paint over it.

    The professionals use this fantastic technique, and so can you!

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    What Causes Nail Pops

    Modern drywall systems are largely installed with drywall screws. Drywall screws may occasionally snap off but they will never pop out. Instead, the nail pops in your ceiling and walls are caused by short drywall nails that are no longer firmly attached in the two-by-four studs.

    Most houses built prior to the 1970s that have not been subsequently remodeled will almost always have drywall hung with nails, not drywall screws. Made of galvanized steel and with a broad head, drywall nails generally range from 1 1/8-inch to 1 7/8-inch long. Even if you have walls that have been built after the 1970s, you might still have wallboard hung with drywall nails, since some drywall installers prefer to use nails.

    As the wood studs dry out over time, the wood fibers lose their grip and are no longer able to hold the smooth shank of the drywall nail. The nails protrude, usually bringing drywall compound filler and paint with them. It is usually fruitless to pound the nails back in place because the wood will not hold the shank.

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    Can You Put A Drywall Anchor In Spackle


    . Keeping this in consideration, can you screw into drywall spackle?

    Tiny nail and screw holes are easiest: Use a putty knife to fill them with spackling or wall joint compound. Allow the area to dry, then sand lightly. Anything larger must be covered with a bridging material for strength before patching compound can be applied. For holes between 1/2 and 11/2 in.

    Furthermore, can you screw into joint compound? The joint compound is only about a quarter or half an inch thick. Yes you can put a screw/anchor into a repaired hole, especially if the repair is a superficial one as you describe. Be sure to drill a pilot hole first, and use an appropriate size anchor and screw.

    Subsequently, question is, is spackle as strong as drywall?

    Spackle is overall stronger than drywall compound, but not user friendly. If you are repairing nail holes or small defects in drywall lightweight spackle will do and usually can be painted in 30 min. or less. If you are replacing a piece of drywall you will have to use drywall compound.

    How big of a hole can you spackle?

    Spackle can be used to repair holes less than 4 inches in diameter. Anything larger than that, and the spackle wont be strong enough to support itself and will collapse inward. Larger holes will require support like mesh or wire and joint compound to be properly repaired.

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  • FAQs

    Is it hard to fix nail holes in wall? ›

    Filling nail holes can be challenging, particularly if you're trying to completely erase any trace of the fasteners. Those dimples left by well-intended spackling jobs can haunt us long after the gallery wall comes down.

    Can you just paint over nail holes? ›

    If you mean nail holes in a wall or door frame, they'll still be holes if all you do it paint over them. Fill them first, with wood filler or spackle or drywall compound, let dry, sand smooth and then paint.

    Is painters putty good for filling nail holes? ›

    DAP Painter's Putty '53' is recommend for filling nail holes, dents, and cracks in wood surfaces.

    How do you fill in nail holes cheaply? ›

    Top DIY ways how to fill nail holes in the wall:
    1. Toothpaste + Aspirin. White toothpaste is an absolute lifesaver — it's cheap and chances are that you already have some in the bathroom cabinet. ...
    2. Baking Soda + Glue. It's time to channel your inner chemistry skills for this one! ...
    3. Elmer's Glue. ...
    4. Ivory Soap.
    Jan 6, 2016

    Is caulk or wood filler better for nail holes? ›

    Filling Nail Holes

    Holes in wood trim are best filled with wood filler. Nail holes in exterior surfaces, just as with cracks or gaps, can be dealt with using a good caulking. Take the time before you apply any paint on your next project to fill all of the gaps, cracks, and nail holes.

    How much does it cost to fill nail holes in the wall? ›

    Most homeowners spend between $60 and $200 repairing small holes in drywall (up to 4 inches across)—but it could cost as much as $650 to repair several holes. This doesn't include extra work like repairing texture or applying new paint.

    How much does it cost to patch nail holes in wall? ›

    The average cost to fix a hole in drywall averages between $60 and $200 for a small hole and $50 to $75 per square foot for larger holes.

    How do you hide nail holes in the wall without painting? ›

    In short, you can fix nail holes with spackle or putty. These compounds will disappear right into pinholes. What's more, they're easy to use. All you need to do is apply them, then let them dry for about 15 minutes.

    Do professional painters patch holes? ›

    Many paint pros will repair small holes and knicks as part of the painting process. Check with the painting pro you are considering to determine if those services are available. The texture on your walls may seem subtle or be something you simply do not notice.

    What not to do after painting nails? ›

    Because when we come onto the actual nail painting part of the process, the nail needs to be free of the all dead skin, dust, and debris that can be on the nail after filing. Filing your nails after painting them will only cause them to lift and chip prematurely.


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