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How to use scrapers and putty knives to patch holes

putty knife in actionBest Scrapers and Putty Knives – How to Use Them

The reason people want to paint their home is to brighten and smarten up the look and feel of the place they enjoy calling home. But, before you proceed with the job of making your rooms and surrounds more beautiful, you the homeowner need to check the surfaces of the walls for  cracks and holes, which are obviously not be the best surface for adding a layer of paint too. With a bit of effort, where  repairs are needed to be made, you can reasonably quickly repair a surface to perfection using  scrapers or putty knives. These are simple tool that give sophisticated results, if used carefully for the repair . A scrapper is first used for removing the old chipped paint and grit from the surface surrounding holes and cracks and chips. A putty knife is then used for applying speckling for making up for the crack and holes in the wall, before repainting can be done. It is a DIY job that can be completed with ease by anyone who has some basic skills by using the putty knife and the scraper DIY tools.

Preparing the surface:

First thing first, the surface area needs to be prepared and for the purpose, the following steps need to be performed:

First, check the entire surface of the area that needs a repair so you know the amount of speckling or filler needed.

Then, Place the drop cloth on the floor just next to the wall for the purpose of catching the falling particles. This will help you in saving the clean up time, and save your flooring .

Lastly, Make sure that the room is properly ventilated with open windows which will prevent people working in the room from getting excessive inhalation of the many dust particles. Get yourself and any others a few simple paper masks for filtering the dust from your nose and mouth. If the ceiling requires some patching, some eye protection is a good idea also

wall scraping putty knifeHow to use a scraper?

For the purpose of patching the holes on the walls, the scraper is the first thing that you will be wanting  to use. It is used for preparing the wall before applying the speckling filling. If the surface has lots of old paint chipped up, then a heavier scrapper or the one with a wider blade must be used for easy and quick wiping off dof the old paint. If you have a wall sander ( a cheap, flat plate you can add to your roller extension to save time and muscle strain…) use it to quickly tidy off the whole wall. This will make for better paint adhesion where the wall is in good order, and help expose the areas that need fixing. The entire thing should be done in a way that the hole can be precisely flattened to wall level smooth with no residue particles seen on any side of the hole before you apply it with filling. The inside of the hole must also be cleaned enough so that the speckling filling stay in firmly when applied. A word of caution, don’t go digging the hole out, just clean it a bit. We are repairing, not demolishing the wall or creating a new Grand Canyon

How to use a putty knife?

At this time, its a good idea to have your speckling mixture  prepared. If pre mix, make sure its air bubble free by kneading it between the putty blades and scrapers until it has a smooth tight consistancy. If preparing from dry powder, create a donut shape of the dry mix and add water to the centre, a little at a time, stirring the powder “in” whilst keeping the sides of the “donut “shape up. This way you can keep the water where you want it, and only mix enough speckle as required.  In order to apply this mixture for the patching of the holes, a putty knife has to be used. The following steps will show how with the use of a putty knife:

  • Before you apply the putty onto the hole for patching, you need to apply the putty first on the knife. For this purpose, you need to be sure that the putty is applied fairly evenly all across the putty knife’s blade. Make sure that you don’t put too much of the putty material onto the knife.
  • Apply it very smoothly onto the hole by spreading it over the surface in an even fashion. If there are any ridged areas, then smooth them gently with the putty knife. Remember, the more you put on in excess, the more you will have to sand off to bring it back a smooth flush or flat to the wall. Too little and all you get is a shallow, smooth hole that still shows up under the paint and looks wierd. Again, for lots of patched areas, you can use the pole sander when the whole lot are finished ( Note, I didn’t try the bad pun there)
  • When appliying paint later, first put a covering patch of paint to the repaired work. This will ensure the patch working becomes even more difficult to see, and if you’ve been consistant and careful, no-one will see your good work.

wall prepConclusion:

The scrapers and the putty knives are essential equipment which work in tandem for patching the holes in the wall. The scrapper is best used for removing the old  particles and tidying and the putty knife is creatively used for applying the filling.