10 Best Drywall Mud Reviews with Buying Guide
A fresh new house filled with hopes and dreams is a luxury that most can’t afford. It's the American dream! Most families save up for years to become a house owner. And you know what’s painful for the eyes to bear for a new house owner? An ugly hole or a cracking plaster.
To aid you from such unfortunate horror, you need the best drywall mud, which can heal your dream house within hours. But wait, which drywall muds are worthy of the title 'best'? Don't worry, I figured out the answer to that too.
Below is a complete guideline containing details about the veterans of the category as well as a buying guide and other small stuff. This is all you need if you are trying to buy drywall mud. So, without further ado, let's head right into the reviews.
just follow this table for take a quick decision
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
4 out of 5
5 out of 5
4.5 out of 5
Benefits of Using Drywall Mud
Drywall mud is a multipurpose product. So, there are a lot of benefits of using it. But if you’re only interested in the significant ones, then I would say,
Drywall mud is simply just easy. Think about having to figure out a complicated ratio of mixing cement and sand every time you want to fill a hole. Drywall mud can be used right out of the box. So, it's simple and easy to figure out.
Drywall mud is at least five times cheaper than cement and other fixing agents. It’s a pocket-friendly option even for a broke college student. We all know how tough it is to get back the deposits of an apartment if it's not in pristine condition.
It Saves Time
If you are in a hurry to host a party, but there is a pesky hole on the wall or a sudden crack that appeared at the wrong time, it can be fixed with drywall mud. Most muds dry off within a couple of hours, so you can paint it over before anyone even notices.
Our Recommended 10 Best Drywall Mud Reviews
Your search for the best of the category should be sufficed soon because I have gathered all of them under one single article. And here they are in a detailed manner. Take a look.
1. 3M High Strength, Primer Enhanced Spackling Compound
Let's start with something familiar, something amazing that you have already heard a lot about. Yes, I'm talking about the brand 3M. If you are even slightly interested in painting and repairing sort of jobs, then 3M is surely the name you have heard about, if not any other.
This drywall mud or spackle, whatever you call it, from 3M is, in a word, a pure genius. That annoying and awkward hole in the wall you have meant to get rid of for some time can be well taken care of with this product. It works 3 times faster than any generic vinyl spackling in the market.
Gone are the days when you needed to prime the wall after spackling. With this baby, you don't have to worry about that. Because this is primer enhanced drywall mud, meaning you don't need to prime the wall. Just fill the targeted hole in, and paint over that like it never even existed.
Sometimes, these spackles shrink or just fall apart after drying out. I don't know about you, but I would absolutely hate that to happen to me. So, for people like me and hopefully you too, 3M has come up with an amazing formula with this product. It won't dry, brittle, or shrink after curing.
Any holes in the wall that are maximum at 3 inches in diameter, 3M can take that on, no problem. And even if you put a nail in the filled-up hole after curing, that’s absolutely doable with this amazing drywall mud.
2. DAP 12330 Dry Time Indicator Spackling
At number 2, we have DAP. Well, what can I add more to its praise, its amazing in itself! Every repair persons’ favorite and somewhat first choice is DAP, and I do not doubt that.
In this 1.9-pound tub, you will get enough product to fill in a lot of gaps and holes around the house. For a spackling or drywall mud, that is a lot of product, trust me. And just like every spackle, this is also white in color.
Sometimes we face a problem where, along with a pre-existing hole in the wall, a dripping liquid problem joins the party. What to do in that situation? Don't worry; DAP can fix that. With this sealant and spackling combo, it can seal the hole as well as make the dripping problem disappear for good.
After using this spackling, you just have to wait patiently for it to dry for not more than a few hours. And then it will be ready to be sanded and painted in any color of your choice.
Use it as you please, either in the interior or for the exterior; it will give you a charming finish every single time. One more thing that's worth noticing is that it comes in a squeeze tube.
So, rather than wondering how to use it, now you can squeeze it right out of the tube, and voila! It's done.
3. Red Devil 0542 ONETIME Lightweight Spackling
What an intriguing name, Red Devil, right? Just like its name, it’s an absolute beast or a demon per se for the holes and unpleasant cracks in the wall. The red Devil does not play around; they mean business.
This beast will give you 4.2-pounds of product in a single purchase. What an absolute steal! I’m pretty sure you will run out of holes to fill before you run out of spackle if you go with this one. It’s a lightweight drywall mud, so it won't even look too obvious.
All you need is a putty knife and this. No holes in the wall will remain unfilled. It is so easy and smooth to use that you will fall in love with it. What spackle doesn't require sanding, right? Is that even possible? Yes, it is very much so with Red Devil. After using this drywall mud, you don't need to do any sanding.
It’s so quick to dry that you can paint over it within minutes. Yes, I admit that some might face a little problem while handling this super-fast spackle, which dries within minutes. But, with some practice and simple rules, you can overcome that, such as keeping the lid on while you're not using it and so on.
It dries white, not to mention quick. So, use it in any setting and prepare to be dazzled with its compatibility with any holes and cracks.
4. DAP Wallboard Joint Compound
Didn't we all see that coming? Don't lie to me, DAP will obviously reappear in the list, and that is inevitable. It is the most flexible drywall mud you’ll ever encounter.
I admit that it's a hassle when you work with small repairs, and it costs you a lot of energy and time. But with this product, you will have to use minimum effort because it comes pre-mixed! Not impressed? Don't worry, I have more to tell you.
This one from DAP has premium quality gypsum panel joints, which makes it durable and easy to use. Ever saw those fancy wall decors that people use in their houses? Those are made with high-quality gypsum material. Does this make DAP the best drywall joint compound? I don't know! You tell me.
Shrinkage is a common sore point with a lot of these drywall muds. That's not the case with DAP. The formula is amazing, which causes no shrinkage after it's done drying. Shrinkage makes these repairs almost impossible. So, if you want to skip the nuisance, choose DAP.
Did I forget to mention that it's easy to sand as well? Well, there you go. The list of pros largely outweighs the little inconveniences with this amazing putty.
5. U S GYPSUM 380270072 Quart Joint Compound
A lot of new adults already suffer from making decisions like, do I pay the bill, or do I get those pair of new boots that’s on sale? And don’t even get me started on moving to a new apartment and claiming the maintenance deposit back.
Regretting the decision of hanging those adorable dog pictures? Well, don’t because you can fix them with this miracle of a spackle called U S gypsum!
This is a literal definition of the best jointing compound. U S gypsum is ready-to-use spackle that can be just bought and slapped on the wall in a minute. Weighing about 3.5 pounds, this jar contains a lot of drywall mud.
You can use this as a sealant for cracks and holes in your wall. For example, if you remove a picture from the wall, it leaves an ugly hole away. To repair that, just smoothen the spackle with the help of two putty knives and paste it on to the hole. As simple as that.
This is a very affordable option for people who are looking for a good sealant putty within budget. Although the spackle takes a bit more time to dry off than some other brands, it's worth the wait. It will dry off in an off-white shade, so if the intended wall is off-white, you don't even have to paint over it!
6. Dap 10100 Wallboard Joint Compound
Looking for the best jointing compound? Well, look no further because this one from DAP is ready to become your new favorite! I have already established a reputation for DAP in this article, so I think I no longer need to elaborate on that. In case you skipped on my praising, I'll tell you once again. DAP is amazing!
This baby won't shrink after drying. So already, this is a huge plus point. Another thing that's amazing about it is it's a sealant as well as a jointing compound. Meaning, it will work as somewhat of an adhesive, which will allow it to be better at its job.
User feedbacks are impressive with this product, so you can count on it. It has a flashpoint of 200-degree Fahrenheit. I don't know why you would set your house on fire, but even if you do that, this spackle isn’t going anywhere that easily. Just kidding!
Sanding is such a drag, but with DAP, it is made easy. Just swipe a couple of times on the problem area, and you should be good to go. As this product dyes off white, you are less likely to have to paint over it. Because most houses have a white interior.
7. U S GYPSUM 385140 All-Purpose Joint Compound
Another great product from U S gypsum. One thing that’s common with all the U S gypsum drywall mud is that they give you a lot of product for such a cheap price that it seems almost too good to be true. But fortunate for us, it is very true.
This one is a versatile player. I told you about a lot of spackles before, but this one really has its own set of charms. A lamination like finish is what sets it apart from other drywall muds in the market. So, if you are looking for a smooth finish, this is it.
Sometimes random cracks appear in the wall in the rainy seasons. Or you can encounter random patching of the wall, which is a result of a bad sealing job in the first place. But that can be handled with this miracle of a product. Just paste it over the crack and wait for it to dry.
Plaster cracks are like a cakewalk for this beast. U S gypsum has been praised over time for its amazing versatile job of being a sealant, spackle, and clay, all at the same time.
8. Dap 12278 Elastomeric Patch and Caulking Compound
I will not even bother with the introduction of DAP in this one. Because you already are pretty familiar with its established outstanding reputation by now. Obviously, if you have read the whole thing. So, I will jump right into the details.
DAP is a fan favorite product. It's manufactured in the USA, so the prices remain affordable if you are from the USA. Actually, the price is affordable with this one regardless. Yes, for drywall mud, it may seem expensive than others, but its quality is what makes it worth and even cheap if you think practically.
It’s a premixed joint compound, so right off the bat, it's usable within moments you check out of the store. You can use it as an adhesive sealant. Meaning, no, it's not glue, but its hold on cracks and joints is marvelous.
Let it be the interior or exterior, you can use DAP for any surface. What makes it so amazing? It's stupefying paintability. It's common with low-quality drywall mud that they shine while painted over – making it obvious that there has been a repair job done on the area. With DAP, that won’t be the case.
Use this baby on smooth surfaces such as masonry or plaster, brick wall, or cement wall; it will work out perfectly. It's a 3.78-pound gallon that contains enough product for a decent size house repair. And yes, it dries off white, which is optimum for a great looking finish.
9. Total Boat Total Fair Marine Epoxy Fairing Compound
In this list of best drywall compound, this is the most unique one that’s unlike any other in the list. It's an epoxy fixer. Total Boat Total Fair is a well-known brand that has gained numerous praises over the years.
First of all, once you use this, you won't be needing any second coating because one would be enough. It's very strong, and the hold of it is fantastic.
It’s a two-part fairing compound. This means you have to go through a process to effectively use it. First, you have to measure out equal parts of the resin itself and the hardener. Then, mix it in a tub separately and apply it after it's well mixed on the problem spots.
Not only your wall, but you can also even repair your boat with this stuff. It’s a marine-grade fairing compound. So, you don’t just have protection against water, you have protection even against harsh saltwater for years.
In less than 3 hours, the epoxy will harden. It’s a quick-drying joint compound, which is always a plus in my book. After 3 hours, you can sand it for a coat of fresh paint. It's that easy! Some people leave it just as it is, but this particular model will leave a greyish tint. So, if that's what you're going for, you're in luck.
Another amazing fact about this one is that it will give you protection against UV rays. So, if you use it on the exterior of the house, you get free UV protection. How cool is that?
10. USG 381466 Lightweight All Purpose Joint Compound
Finishing off the review with this genius from USG. Before I tell you anything, let me mention that it’s a 43-pound tub. Yes, you read that right, 43-pound of product in such a price point. I could have stopped the review there, but I will go on and tell you more about how charming this is.
It’s a lightweight product. We have a misconception that a lightweight spackle is usually very brittle after it dries. Not the case with USG, it's not brittle. It’s an all-purpose joint compound that can be your first pick for the exterior as well as interior repair.
USG won't shrink after it dries, which is another common problem with a lot of jointing compounds in the market. Weighing about 35% less than others, it has amazing capabilities. Like sanding won't be a hassle with this product.
Use it around metal fixtures, but don’t forget to apply at least two coats of it. I would say that’s impressive for a spackle like mud. It's very easy to use and handle. Even if you are fairly new at figuring things out like these fixes around the household, you can do the job well with the help of USG.
Drywall Mud Features at a Glance
Red Devil 0542
30 mins to 2 hours
U S GYPSUM 380270072
More than a day
U S GYPSUM 385140
Total Boat Total Fair
Things to Consider Before Buying Drywall Mud
Buying just any brand will result in you regretting later about your choices. So, before you buy just any brand of drywall mud, let me educate you a little about things that you should know before committing.
A good drywall mud will not cost you days of drying time. A well-formulated product requires less time. Also, who has time to wait around for the spackle to dry and paint over later? I know I don’t. And it's especially annoying if you have guests coming over.
So, choose the one that requires less time. One day drying period is usually fine. But the less, the better for you if you don't have the time.
If the finished product is all janky and filled with air bubbles, then it has a strong possibility of being very brittle. Also, you will need several coats to make up for it, which will require additional drying time. So, be very aware of a product that gives you a rough finish.
Sanding over such drywall mud will also be a pain in the bum.
If you have a pearl white wall, then it's already very tough to match the same shade. Because white color has a variety of shades and painting them in a similar shade is troublesome sometimes. So, I would not recommend using a dark color drywall mud or even an off-white one in this case.
White is a difficult shade to figure out. If you are thinking of repairing a white wall, stick to the white spackle.
These sorts of repairs can cost a fortune if not dealt with at an early stage. And if you use a good quality drywall mud in the early stages of a crack, then it won’t spread wings and turn into a bigger mess.
So, using good quality drywall mud is essential, not only to deal with possible future costs but also for present aesthetic reasons. A good quality drywall mud will give you a much smoother finish, which is eye-pleasing.
Be mindful of the fact that you don’t have to break your bank for a good product. Within budget, you can get excellent drywall mud that will get the job well done. So, don’t waste money on something that doesn’t require much cash. Save it for important things in life.
Types of Drywall Mud
You can find a variety of drywall compound types in the market. Here are a few described below.
It's for the initial stages of a house. When you want to cover up plaster cracks, this type of drywall mud will be your best friend. This one dries very hard. Sometimes it can be difficult to sand.
Also, it works more towards giving you better results in terms of jointing and sealing the cracks rather than being pretty, which I think is a great sacrifice. Because with the help of a good sanding machine, pretty results can be found, but a strong bond lies within ingredients.
It's what the name suggests, it’s a drywall compound that sets very quickly. This is for the desperate times when you need a quick fix for the problem at hand. It is sometimes called ‘hot mud’ by some.
For the times when you need to apply multiple coats in a single day, these types of drywall mud are your best bet. Cracks that are deep and barely reachable can be treated with this.
It can be a total bummer for people living in a humid area to use other types because they will take time to dry. But a quick setting one will be an efficient choice.
This is the best to finish off the job. If you are in the market for a drywall mud that will give you a smooth looking finish, then this is it. It's commonly used for interiors that will be left as is. Or exteriors that need an artistic finish.
Also, this type shrinks very little. So, it's a go-to for a lot of regular users.
Lastly, there comes an all-purpose compound. This one is not limited to one specific usage. You can use it for anything and everything. Trying to fix cracked plaster or a hole, the all-purpose type can handle it. There’s nothing much to add to it, it is an all-purpose, after all.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here is a list of questions pre-answered for you.
1. If my drywall mud gets wet, is it ruined?
Not necessarily. Drywall mud is usually made out of gypsum material, which is a result of processing trees in a specific manner. And trees have always been in touch with moisture in nature. So, no, it's not ruined if the amount of water is less. But a great quantity and lengthy exposure time are a whole another case.
2. Is it toxic?
Simply put, no, it's not. It's not toxic on its own and in its natural using state. But when you sand it off, which you eventually need to do, then it can be dangerously toxic. So, please use a mask while sanding.
3. What is the difference between drywall mud and jointing compound?
There is actually no difference between the two. You can call it either, and it does the same job. These are usually gypsum-based paste for easy repairs around the household.
4. Should I sand in between the coats?
Yes! For a professional finish, it's better if you sand. It's not a must, but for better results, you can sand in between coats of drywall mud application. 150-180 grit papers are the optimum choice for the job.
5. Why did my drywall mud get moldy?
It's possible because you couldn't restore it properly. Tightly shut the lid of the tub. And after using the drywall mud, don't forget to apply a coat of paint.
Finding the best drywall mud is certainly not an easy task. Yet it's not impossible too. Everyone should know these basics of life because you never know when it will come in handy. I hope this article will lead you to the best product in the market that can do the job well.
Also, don’t forget to restore it well for using it later.