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Drywall  /  October 19, 2022

Top Causes of Drywall Cracking and How To Prevent Further Damage

Why drywall cracks

Drywall is affordable and durable, making it the perfect choice for interior wall applications. For effective drywall installations, it’s always best to work with someone who provides professional drywall services in Saskatoon, such as Handyman Connection. Installing drywall yourself, or even working with a novice could lead to issues in the near future.

There are many reasons that drywall could eventually crack. The primary causes of drywall cracking are

  • Truss uplift
  • Expansion
  • Traffic
  • Butt Joints

Not only is drywall cracking an annoying eyesore, but it can also be expensive to replace when you consider the removal, re-installation, and finishing that will need to occur. Understanding the causes of drywall cracking could help avoid it.

Truss Uplift

Trusses are used during building to transfer the weight of the structure to the exterior walls. This allows for fewer and sometimes zero load-bearing interior walls. While this is more affordable in practice, it can be costly if truss uplift occurs.

Truss uplift happens when parts of the truss are exposed to fluctuations in temperature and environment. The truss may expand when exposed to moisture or humidity which results in drywall being pulled upward with it.

While it’s unfortunate when this occurs, the damage that occurs during truss lifts is avoidable. Your handyman will need to install a backing angle to hold the drywall inside corners in place. This allows the trusses to continue to expand and contract as needed while the drywall remains securely in place.


Expansion occurs in walls and has the same primary cause as truss uplift. Fluctuations in the environment can cause walls to expand and contract. There’s nothing you can do to stop the changes in temperatures and humidity, but you can do something to help protect the structure of your walls.

By leaving a gap between long runs of drywall, space is allowed for drywall to move as it needs. Using vinyl expansion joints will bridge the gap between sheets and limit the occurrence of this type of wear and tear.


People coming and going are one of the greatest causes of wear and tear to your drywall. Furniture, boxes, and other belongings get moved in and out or rearranged. As things are moved, accidental bumps happen, and corners suffer.

The solution is simple and affordable. Vinyl corner beads are flexible and durable enough to withstand a few beatings and they can help protect corners. Because they are affordable, if they become damaged they are easily replaced.

Butt Joints

The place where two pieces of drywall meet are called a butt joint. The butt joint is a common area of cracking concern for the beginner and the expert drywaller.

As with the expansion that occurs on longer runs of drywall, even shorter pieces of drywall need a little space to move. You can leave a 1/8-inch gap between boards to allow movement. The space left is small enough that it shouldn’t cause breakage in your drywall tape or mud.

Certain areas of your building structure are also prone to more movement, such as around doors and windows. Instead of cutting your drywall into pieces around these square areas, cut the square out of one piece of drywall instead. As a solid piece, there are no weak points to break apart.

One more thing that can help secure butt joints is using a buttboard. A buttboard pulls the edges of the drywall back to create a tapered edge. This edge requires less mud, which is also prone to cracking, for finishing the joints.

Hiring a Professional

While installing drywall may appear to be a project for the seasoned do-it-yourselfer, there are technical aspects to the installation that take years of experience to perfect. For the best results in your drywall installation, hire a professional so the job is performed right.

You can simply search for “handyman near me” in the Saskatoon area and click the link for Handyman Connection. Our friendly professionals are experienced in a variety of remodels and repairs.

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