LESLIE: Carol in Texas is on the line with a crack in ceiling. Tell us about it. Where do you see it?
CAROL: I have a crack in ceiling – a hairline crack – but you can see it. And it’s right in front of the front door.
CAROL: I want to fix it because we hope to put this property up for sale next year. And I don’t want to fix it and it keeps opening up and I have to keep fixing it.
TOM: Well, that’s because – first of all, that’s a space that’s going to have a lot of expansion and contraction. And secondly, you can’t just patch that crack in ceiling because you’re not really fixing the crack; you’re just covering it up. And it’s going to continue to open and close.
So what you have to do is you have to sand it. Then you have to apply a perforated tape to that. The drywall tape, it’s about 2 inches wide and it’s tacky. So you put that across the crack in ceiling and then you put about three coats of spackle over that. And that kind of reinforces that crack and sort of brings that board – both sides of it – into one solid piece so that it’s not going to move when it opens and closes.
So do it in that order: sand it first so it’s nice and clean and dry, put the tape on it and then three coats of spackle. And then you’re going to have to prime it and paint it again. But that’s the way to fix it once and not have to worry about it occurring over and over again.
CAROL: Tell me the name of the paint – the tape – again.
TOM: Well, it’s perforated. It looks like netting. But you’ll find it in a home center or hardware store sold with the spackle and the other wall-repair tools. You’ll recognize this. It’s usually yellow.
CAROL: And just put that over it and then put the spackle on top of it. But be sure and sand it first.
TOM: You’ve got it.
CAROL: Well, thank you so much. I hope for the best.
TOM: Alright. Well, I think you’re well on your way to a crack-free ceiling.
CAROL: Thank you, sir. I appreciate your time.