Why Is My Drywall Cracking?

Is it normal for drywall to crack?

A: Wall cracks are fairly common in both new and older homes and are often the result of normal house “settling” that can quickly, inexpensively be remedied by re-taping the joints—the seams where the drywall panels meet..

How can you tell if a crack is structural?

The common characteristics structural cracks include:Continuous horizontal cracks along walls.Vertical cracks that are wider at the top or bottom.Stair-step cracks.Foundation wall cracks.Cracks in beams, foundation slabs.Angled cracks that form in the corners of walls with a horizontal crack in the center.More items…•

How big of a gap can you fill with drywall mud?

You can usually fill gaps less than 1/2 inch wide with joint compound while you are taping, but joint compound cracks when used to fill wider gaps. The solution is to fill the gaps with patching compound or, if they are especially wide, with strips of drywall.

Can a cracked foundation be fixed?

The good news: Foundation wall cracks can often be repaired quickly and affordably. With the exception of tiny shrinkage cracks (see above), any foundation wall crack should be inspected by an experienced foundation repair contractor.

Do drywall cracks mean foundation problems?

Drywall cracks that occur around the corners of windows and doors – on any floor of your home – are often due to foundation movement. … If a crack has been repaired once before and has opened again, it is likely a sign that the foundation is shifting or settling.

Will paint fill hairline cracks?

For deeper hairline cracks, you may want to use a filler to fill up the cracks before applying a new layer of paint in the affected area. However, if an extensive area has been affected, you will need to scrape off the paint and then sand the entire area to even out the edges before applying a fresh coat of paint.

Can I use caulk to fix drywall cracks?

Use caulk if cracks appear where the ceiling meets the wall. Caulk is flexible and can withstand a slight bit of settlement. Sand, prime and paint the wall after you’ve repaired the crack. And then stand by for the next change of seasons and the next round of drywall cracks.

Should I worry about hairline cracks?

Problematic wall cracks will typically start at windows, doorways or house corners. Generally, smaller hairline cracks are not cause for concern. These are usually the result of seasonal expansion and contraction of clay soils beneath your house over time, and can be easily patched and re-painted.

Are vertical or horizontal cracks worse?

Vertical cracks are usually the direct result of foundation settling, and these are the more common of foundation issues. Horizontal cracks are generally caused by soil pressure and are normally worse than vertical cracks.

When should I be concerned about drywall cracks?

Call us right away if a crack is wide enough to fit a dime inside or if one end of the crack is noticeably wider than the other. Are the cracks near windows and doors? When the cracks you notice in your drywall and sheetrock are near the windows and doors, that’s another cause for concern.

Are horizontal cracks in drywall bad?

A: Drywall cracks show up routinely in only a few specific areas in newer homes: Vertical and horizontal cracking on walls represents only normal post-construction wood-framing drying and shrinkage (and/or poor finishing technique). These are the seams in the sheets of drywall, manifesting as cracks.

Is it normal for old houses to have cracks?

Cracks are usually caused by settlement, but not necessarily. Expansion and contraction can cause them, as can inadequate framing members. Houses move with the climate: Heat and moisture will make them expand, cold and dryness will make them contract. This movement is normal and in most cases will not cause cracks.

How do you stop drywall from cracking?

To minimize cracking do your best to place your butt joint where they are the least exposed to movement. For instance, notch your drywall around doors and windows instead of breaking drywall at these movement prone areas. Next, leave a 1/8″ gap between your boards, do not fit them tight against each other.

How do you know if a wall crack is serious?

Severe – cracks up to 25mm wide could be a sign of structural damage and should be inspected and repaired by a professional. Very severe – any crack above 25mm in width indicates serious structural damage and will need major repair work, which could include underpinning and rebuilding.

How much does it cost to repair drywall cracks?

The average cost to repair drywall cracks is $2 per linear foot for walls and $2.30 per linear foot for ceilings. On average, professional contractors will charge $60 to $80 per hour plus materials for substantial crack repairs.

Does home insurance cover cracked walls?

Your dwelling coverage protects the structure of your home like its foundation, frame, walls, and the roof over your head. Most homeowners insurance policies will cover sudden and accidental damage to your home’s foundation, however, things like leaks and wear and tear may not be covered by your policy.

What kind of foundation cracks are bad?

Of all the foundation cracks, the stair-step cracks are the most dangerous. They normally run in a diagonal line and assail concrete blocks and brick foundations. Cracks start in a joint or at the end of the wall then taper down or climb up. Like all diagonal cracks, they’re caused by differential settlement.