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#4638227 - 01/17/18 09:05 PM Drywall Cracks
Warstud Online   content

Registered: 09/02/05
Posts: 5090
Loc: MIchigan
I just noticed I've got a couple hairline cracks in my drywall where I repaired it a few years back and I also have one in the garage above the entry door that seems to get worse in the winter. Same with my hardwood floors. Is this a result of low humidity?

#4638251 - 01/17/18 09:29 PM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
JLawrence08648 Offline

Registered: 01/20/17
Posts: 127
Loc: NJ
Settling. Are your walls plaster and you spackled on top? Did you use paper or mesh tape? Premix Compound?

#4638261 - 01/17/18 09:46 PM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
Warstud Online   content

Registered: 09/02/05
Posts: 5090
Loc: MIchigan
I cut out the crack and filled with Premixed Joint Compound and used mesh tape.

#4638263 - 01/17/18 09:49 PM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
nickaluch Offline

Registered: 10/04/08
Posts: 272
Loc: Long Island,nassau county NY
It's from dry winter heat in your house.
2007 G6 beater.2012 E450 box truck. 2018 Chevy Traverse.2017 E450 box truck.2017 Chevy 3500 extend cargo van.

#4638266 - 01/17/18 09:57 PM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
maxdustington Offline

Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 167
Loc: Toronna
Ditch the premix and get some real mud. We have a product called sheetrock 90 which is used in initial plaster coats on drywall because it does not shrink. If you have to repair the same area again, you should try non shrinking plaster.
03 Jetta AWP/09A 200k kms

#4638310 - 01/17/18 10:47 PM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
slowrench Offline

Registered: 11/14/15
Posts: 24
Loc: california
Water can cause ground to swell some, in the winter time.This can make doors stick,cracks appear,even raise a floor,depending on type of soil and where the house was built.

#4638339 - 01/17/18 11:36 PM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
Reddy45 Offline

Registered: 08/15/08
Posts: 2522
Loc: USA
Yup I have seen a few nail pops due to the icy blast that keeps revisiting us. The news said this has been a record year for gas consumption so it's definitely the coldest it has been in a while.

When spring rolls around, get out that spackle and paint!
2015 Toyota Tacoma V6 4X4

#4638370 - 01/18/18 01:13 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
FZ1 Offline

Registered: 02/07/08
Posts: 4727
Loc: Texas
Probably just shifting. Ground is drying and contracting vs. seasons when you water.

#4638374 - 01/18/18 01:32 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
ecotourist Offline

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 1016
Loc: British Columbia, Canada
Can you tell if there has been settling? If there has been, (in theory) you can re-level it using the adjustable teleposts which have been fairly normal construction on the Canadian prairies for decades. I don't know how common they are elsewhere. I have a fairly large pipe wrench which I've only used once, for adjusting a "loose" tele-post. I only had to adjust it once.

It isn't easy to tell if there's been settling, but it should be relatively easy, if you have an unfinished basement, using a laser level.

Say you have a beam that runs from one side of the house to the other. You'd check the ends to see if they're level, and then check at various points along the beam. The problem is you don't know how level it was in the first place. About all you can do is assume it was originally level at the ends and the adjustment points and work from there. I assume there'd be more potential for drift if a beam only runs across part of a span, say from a basement wall and ending at a post.

This process might be beyond the skills of the average homeowner and you might need help from an engineer or someone in the construction business.

If you do adjust tele-posts, go very slowly, making only part of a turn every few days, or you could end up with worse cracking, or at least that's what I've been told. And it goes without saying, be sure you're adjusting it in the right direction!

One of our houses had dry wall cracking in the winter. The cracks would close up again come spring. I never figured out what that was about.
2000 BMW 528i 5MT
2007 Honda Accord EX-L 4Door V6 6MT

#4638379 - 01/18/18 01:37 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
FZ1 Offline

Registered: 02/07/08
Posts: 4727
Loc: Texas
It's just seasonal shifting. Best not to jack with engineers and foundation people.

#4638477 - 01/18/18 07:48 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
doitmyself Offline

Registered: 06/03/02
Posts: 6128
Loc: MI
I, too, would say that its from seasonal changes due to humidity changes, temperature influences, etc.. There might be a small installation "flaw" in the wall: compound problem, lack of fasteners, stud framing problem. It's likely to reappear year after year unless you can correct the root cause.

The only topping type, somewhat permanent repair I found is to use a fiberglass tape topped by a flexible top coat. It used to be available as permanent crack repair kits, but I have not seen them lately. I found it very difficult to use because the product is difficult to level and feather edge. It doesn't sand down very well. It took a lot of skill to make a repair that didn't show through the paint. I used the kit, then topped it with some very thin conventional topping for final feathering. This final coat was applied more as a glazing type operation to just fill, level, and feather the repair area.

Here's the one I used:

#4638514 - 01/18/18 08:16 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
E150GT Offline

Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 1015
Loc: San Antonio, TX
I just spent $2,500 to have over 50 cracks repaired due to my house settling.
1984 Mercedes-Benz 300SD - 100k
1995 F150 XL 4.9 reg cab 5 speed - 247k 5w30
2016 Mazda 6 manual 6speed - 46k 5w30

#4638533 - 01/18/18 08:36 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
oldoak2000 Offline

Registered: 07/23/14
Posts: 119
Loc: North TEXAS
foundation aside, wood (frame of house) shrinks when dry, swells when humid. Especially a problem on big/long houses.
Drywall compound cannot handle any movement at all, as you've noticed.
I've had great luck using a specific elastomeric coating to deal with seasonal movement like this :
specifically BlackJack Ultra-Roof 1000 -
This stuff goes on like real thick latex paint. read the specs - it can expand and contract 350% without cracking !! On ceilings - it matched the pure-white pretty good with no paint touch-up needed. On walls it accepts latex paint well to color match the patch, and the latex overcoat flexes pretty well with it for a few years till it gets brittle. For really big gaps (that constantly move) I simply fill the gap with some latex foam first (it too can handle movement better than drywall compound or spackle) then elastomeric coating over it - sometimes a few coats if gap is big.

#4638546 - 01/18/18 08:51 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: Warstud]
zzyzzx Offline

Registered: 05/18/12
Posts: 4220
Loc: Baltimore, Maryland, USA
I've tried many things that are supposed to fix this, but the cracks keep coming back. I now live with the cracks.

#4638662 - 01/18/18 10:48 AM Re: Drywall Cracks [Re: FZ1]
ecotourist Offline

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 1016
Loc: British Columbia, Canada
Originally Posted By: FZ1
It's just seasonal shifting. Best not to jack with engineers and foundation people.

You're probably right. You could do more harm than good.

There has been at least some seasonal cracking in every house I've owned, some more than others. It seems if you repair these minor cracks enough times the cracking eventually stops. Or maybe you just stop seeing them.
2000 BMW 528i 5MT
2007 Honda Accord EX-L 4Door V6 6MT

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