Whether it comes from a leaky pipe, a projected spill, or something else, moisture of any kind can definitely cause a lot of problems with drywall. The inner layer of drywall is exceptionally dry and chalky, which means it will easily absorb moisture and hold it. Unfortunately, this held in moisture can cause problems, such as mold and deterioration and you will definitely have to have the damaged drywall pieces replaced.
It is always best if you have a professional tackle such a difficult task, but if you are like a lot of homeowners, you will try to handle the issue on your own. Here are a few do's and don'ts that you have to keep in mind if you do try your hand at drywall water damage repair.
Do: Make sure that all of the water damaged material is removed. - Because the moisture gets trapped inside of the core of the drywall, it can be very difficult to determine the extent of the water damage. If you do not remove all of the moistened material, you could see repeat issues later in after the repair is complete.
Don't: Rely on just your senses to find moisture. - You may think that you could easily see or feel moisture inside of drywall, but this is not always the case. Professionals (like Mike's Drywall Service Inc) often use a hydrometer to measure moisture content.
Do: Block off the rest of your home while removing molded materials. - If there is mold inside of the drywall that you are removing, make sure you keep the room where you are working blocked off from the rest of the house to prevent spores from becoming airborne and spreading.
Don't: Pack molded drywall through the house. - Place a large waste receptacle near a window if you can or inside of the space where you are working to prevent carrying mold spores through the home.
Do: remove entire sheets of drywall that have damaged areas. - It may seem more economical to just cut out the spaces where water damage has occurred, but patching drywall holes can be a major undertaking. Plus, removing whole sheets will help to ensure you get all of the moisture removed.
As you can tell by some of the recommendations, repairing water-damaged drywall is not an easy task if you have little experience with working with drywall. If you believe the task may be too much for you to handle on your own, talk to a water damage contractor who specializes in drywall restoration for help.