Home Repair

Screws showing through drywall

This topic is available here on The Repair-Place forum
Our enterance has 12 ft ceiling, and I have two drywall screws popping through. One in the stickle ceiling, and the other in the wall. I thought I had a dead bug on the wall, and may have gouged it a little with the end of a broom handle Rolling Eyes

Is there a proper way to deal with this? Can I just screw it back in? Or do I screw new ones, one above and one below then remove that one, patch and paint?

Sometime the screws weren't set deep enough to begin with, and now the plug has just fallen out. But this doesn't sound like what you're describing, Usually screws "popping up" through the wall is because of a problem when the drywall was installed. If a little something (a nailhead, a piece of dirt for example) was between the drywall and the stud when the drywall was screwed to the stud, it can hold the drywall away from the stud jsut a little bit.

Then when that bit falls out or pokes into the back of the drywall, the drywall settles in towards the stud, and the screw heads appear to have popped out, when they've just really stayed in the same place.

Take your screwdriver and screw them in so that they are just below the surface of the drywall, the fill the indentation with your favorite spackle. I've had good luck with non-shrinking products like Fast n Final or Once n Done. Sand and paint.

By the way, since the drywall is fairly stiff and obstructions can cause more than one tiny spot to be away from the stud, it's possible that more will pop in the near future... you might want to try and nip it in the bud by locating the other screws in that stud and screwing them down now so you don't have to repeat the process.

You can find the screws in the wall using "raking light". Take a good strong flashlight and hold it as flush agains tthe wall as possible, with the beam of light just barely skimming by the wall.. you will see every single imperfection along the wall. The screws will usually in a straight line either vertically (most often) or horizontally. Just stick the phillips screwdriver into the hole and turn until it finds the slots.

On word of caution: Some drywall is installed with drywall nails instead of screws. If that's the case, trying to screw in a nail won't be very effective. Get out your hammer and tap them in, to just below the surface.

Good luck.

Guru, did I miss anything?
WoW! Thanks Ron!!! Sounds like you've done that a few times! That saved me some typing! I don't think you missed a thing!

Except..... Wink if the screw that has popped (the one you can see) is a nail, THEN put a screw either above or below, doesn't matter which.
Thanks, and as soon as I get me a 12 ft ladder I can reach them. It is a typical black drywall screw.

The wall is fine, no cracks, and no other screws showing through. It really looked like a black spider sitting there, then I tried to brush it off...that was when I realized a screw came out. The rest of the house is fine.

I was just worried that if I sunk it, in time it would move back out.


Questions to Webmaster