Knowing how to skim coat a wall is a skill that will always come in handy. With it, you’ll always have the ability to fix up damages in drywall or revamp the texture of your walls altogether—and at a fraction of what it would cost to hire a local drywall contractor.
Whether you want to give your interior walls a smooth finish or finally hide the imperfections you can’t bear to look at any longer, applying a skim coat will give you the results you’re looking for. Use this guide to make the process as simple as can be and find out exactly which tools you’ll need and how long the project will take for both beginners and avid DIYers alike.
Prepping to Skim Coat a Wall
Because the objective of skim coating a wall is to establish as smooth of a finish as possible, it’s important to take a few preparatory steps to ensure that ends up being the case. Here’s what you might need to do beforehand to guarantee the best possible results.
Protect Your Area
Whether you’re painting, skim-coating, or demolishing a wall, it’s always a good idea to protect the rest of your home with a drop cloth and painter’s tape. Cover all areas that might be affected, and seal the cloth to your baseboards or the bottom of your wall with tape to prevent any slipping and sliding.
Remove Old Paint or Wallpaper
Unless you’re working on a blank wall or one that has already been cleared of paint and wallpaper, you’ll need to do this task yourself. Fortunately, removing paint and wallpaper is easy to DIY with a few helpful tips. Once you’ve removed the majority of the pre-existing wall treatments, take time to remove stray pieces of drywall paper—either with a box cutter or your fingers—so your surface is easier to sand.
Sand to Smooth Walls
Finally, sand out remaining lumps or imperfections with a hand or electric sander and minimum 120- to 150-grit sandpaper for drywall. Your base doesn’t have to be perfectly smooth (the joint compound will take care of that) but you’ll get a better final product if you start with a surface that’s as smooth as possible.
5 Steps to Skim Coat a Wall
Now that you’re prepped and ready to go, the process of skim coating a wall is no more difficult than adding a new layer of paint. Let’s get to it!