How to Finish Drywall {Spackling or Mudding Sheetrock Joints}


Finishing drywall seams has been compared to frosting a cake. But, as anyone knows, the first time you frost a cake, it doesn’t usually come out Cake Boss worthy. I figured it would be helpful if I gave you a few tips and tricks to get you on the fast track to learning how to finish a sheetrock joint like a pro.

Before I show you those tips, let’s rewind to the reason I had to finish drywall seams in the first place! As you might remember, we had to tear down our kitchen walls after we found termite damage inside. In all honesty, although it was a set back, I am really glad that we discovered it before we finished the kitchen.

I’m also thankful that Waste Management offered to set me up with one of those low profile Bagster® Bags. It was spacious enough to hold ALL of our construction debris.


It is a highly durable, woven bag designed for disposing as much as 3,300 pounds of debris and is big enough to hold full sheets of plywood, doors and even a bathtub. In our case, it held all the termite damaged walls and studs! When it was filled, I scheduled my pick up online at and Waste Management sent a driver to collect the bag in three business days! (I could have also called the toll free number: 1-877-789-2247 to speak to a human being if I preferred.)

True to their promise, Waste Management sent Dale to come pick up the whole kit and kaboodle 36 hours after I set up the pick up request! Here are some scenes from the pick up:


 Does Dale look like a mythical beast tamer to you?

I seriously think a little boy lives inside me because I could watch this all day.


(You can watch a video of a Bagster® Bag being hoisted in the air here.)


And like that, Dale drove off and the debris was gone!


FYI, The Bagster® Bag costs just $29.95 plus a flat rate collection fee (ranging fro $79 – $159 per bag) depending on your area. This was 50-7o% less than a dumpster rental. I would say it was totally worth it to us to use the Bagster® Bag and avoid the unsightly scene of a dumpster in our yard for months. For more information, you can visit or visit them on Facebook.

Now that the debris is gone, it’s time to focus on the task of finishing those drywall seams.




  • Joint Compound
  • Mud Pan (at least 12″)
  • 4″, 6″ and 12″ taping knives – (You might need a 3 or 4 inch one if you have to dig compound out of the bucket.)
  • Drywall joint tape
  • Scissors
  • Sanding sponge
  • Damp rag


First fill all the screw impressions. Read more about installing drywall and the perfect screw depth here.


Use a small taping knife and spread just enough joint compound to fill in the hole impression. Scrape off any excess.

To show you the proper technique for finishing those seams, I made a short video (if you can’t view the video below, click here.)

I hope that helped you learn how to finish drywall seams like a pro! Just remember, it might take a little practice, but you’ll get the hang of it quickly. 😉

Have a great weekend!


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. Waste Management partnered with bloggers such as me to participate in its The Bagster® Bag Blogger Challenge.  As part of this program, I received compensation to cover the cost of the Bagster bag and pick-up as well as my time.  They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about the products used for the The Bagster® Bag Blogger Challenge. Waste Management believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Waste Management’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations. A winner will be chosen by random and voucher fulfillment will be handled by a third party.


  1. It’s good to see your doing the work yourself. I get calls all the time asking me if this is a project that they should tackle themselves. Most of the time just a little knowledge and a willingness to learn from mistakes can give a homeowner a great sense of accomplishment and pride. Great site.

  2. Very handy! I will look into this if I ever have the need in the future. Great post!

  3. Thanks for these great tips. You are helping so many people at home learn how to do this themselves.

  4. Great video, Brittany. I’m so sorry about your termite problems- we discovered that problem with a previous house after we put it on the market.What a nightmare!

  5. Great post Brittany! You give such detailed and valuable information. You ROCK!

  6. Andrea D. says:

    Your video was fantastic! I know that I’m going to have to tackle this DIY soon. My project will be slightly different in that my drywall tape is coming off the corners of my bathroom ceiling. I’m sure that the moisture in the bathroom is the main cause of this. Any pointers for replacing drywall tape on a ceiling corner seam in a bathroom? Is the process the same?

    • Andrea, ugh,the same thing was happening in our Laundry Room. I don’t know if this is the “orthodox” way to fix it, but I used an x-acto knife to cut any edges that were really sticking up. Then I used some glue (can’t remember what kind, maybe just plain Elmer’s.) to glue under the tape. THEN I used the joint compound as shown in the video. Only corners are trickier because you can’t hump the seam. Just put your knife in the crease and pull out, applying more pressure as you move away from the corner. Good luck.

  7. I recently hired a man to paint our hallway , really just so he would fix the dry wall seam that split. Well, now I can do it “over “with the help of your tutorial because his came out no where near as smooth and neat as yours! Thanks again for the wonderful help to all of us D.I.Y.’ers

  8. I have several places in my house where the corner joints were not taped or mudded, one at the ceiling. I’d love instruction on how to finish those seams correctly. I have a book, but it’s so good to see someone actually performing the chore. It’s really helpful.
    Thanks, Judy

  9. Naomi Mangan says:

    Brittany, I want say I am so very thankful for your site! I have always been interested in DIY projects and started planking one of my sons rooms. Before I finished-my boyfriend of 6 years and I parted ways…he took his tools with him. I bought my own through harbor freight with my tax refund and went a little crazy :-)

    A few weeks ago my finished basement was flooded and glad I have insurance but its not enough to cover the entire cost so I chose to do most of the DIY. Your site gave me the courage to go ahead and do whatever diy project I desire to do. Your tutorials are easy to follow (do wish for closed captioning on videos as I’m Deaf) and today I will tackle installing drywall myself. Again-I got most of my courage from you and your site. Thank you!

    • Naomi, thank you so much for taking the time to leave my your comment. It truly made my night. I will definitely have to look into the easiest way to create closed captions for my existing YouTube videos. Thanks for bringing that to my attention. Good luck with the drywall!

  10. Had to drywall our whole house because of extensive water damage. Drywall takes forever to finish, especially when it is all ceilings. Any tips for ceilings?


  1. […] Be sure to read my tutorial for mudding drywall joints and seams! […]

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