I have a confession to make: I hate doing drywall (and, I’m not that great working with joint compound). Luckily, my old house is mostly lathe and plaster, which presents a whole other set of challenges—but, I rarely have to work with drywall. However, a recent plumbing leak required cutting a hole in the drywall ceiling of our family room, which meant patching the hole and replacing damaged drywall.
One of my biggest bugbears with drywall is taping the seams. It doesn’t help that none of our walls or ceilings are flat and nothing ever lines up evenly. I typically use paper tape, but have struggled with adhesion issues from time to time, getting bubbles or blisters that only show up after the joint compound dries. I have used mesh tape, but it seems to be thicker, and on smaller patches, the joint compound has to be fairly thick. This leaves a high border, showingcasing your new patch.
I was talking to a contractor recently and he mentioned a product he thought might eliminate the issues I was complaining about: FibaFuse Paperless Drywall Tape. I hadn’t seen it before but went out and bought some, so I’d have it on hand when I needed it. The tape looked promising. It’s a fiberglass mesh that looks like it’s made of dense, flattened cobwebs. Fortunately, my recent leaky pipes presented the opportunity to finally use the FibaFuse tape.
First I laid down a bed of joint compound across the seams of my large patch. Then, I cut strips of the tape to length for each seam. Next, I used a 4-inch drywall knife to press the tape into the compound. I followed that with a 6-inch knife to cover the tape with a layer of joint compound and let that fully dry. Once dry, I sanded the high spots and used a 10-inch knife to skim coat the repair and feather the edges into the original ceiling.
When I pressed the FibaFuse tape into the joint compound, it filled voids in the tape and fused with it. The proof of whether it would stay that way would come after the next coat of joint compound dried.
I was very happy with how well the FibaFuse Paperless Drywall Tape worked. The joint compound worked its way into the voids in the tape, securing it the full length of the repair with no bubbles or blisters. The tape was easy to use, but you might want to wear gloves when handling it. I did get some stray, itchy fiberglass fibers on my skin after I cut the tape. But, that’s not going to deter me from using the FibaFuse tape again.
My patch wasn’t quite flush with the surrounding drywall. So, the second coat of joint compound included a wide skim coat across the center. It will blend in with sanding—most importantly, there are no blisters under the tape.