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How to Hide a Water Stain in Drywall

Water stains on drywall can bleed through coats of joint compound and paint, creating large, unsightly patches of discoloration. The only effective way to eliminate such stains is to apply a sealer. Repair the source of the leak before attempting to cover the stain. If the surface of the stain is moist, set up fans or dehumidifiers to speed the drying process. As long as the drywall retains water, the stain can continue expanding. Purchase an oil-based, stain-blocking primer from a retail hardware store. Latex-based sealers aren't as effective.

Things You'll Need

  • Oil-based, stain-blocking primer
  • Drop cloths
  • Clean, dry rag
  • Brush
  • Interior paint
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    • 1

      Cover the floor and nearby furniture with drop cloths.

    • 2

      Wipe the surface of the water stain with a clean, dry rag to remove dust and dirt.

    • 3

      Open as many windows as possible to provide proper ventilation. Oil-based paints produce dangerous fumes.

    • 4

      Brush on the primer across the surface of the stain. Coat it evenly and thoroughly.

    • 5

      Allow the primer to dry according to the manufacturer's specifications. Typically, overnight will do.

    • 6

      Paint over the primed area with normal interior paint to match the surrounding walls or ceilings.