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  • Writer's pictureAnthony Carnicella

Drywall Smooth Wall Finish and Texture Coating

Updated: Apr 30

Drywall Hang and Tape 6000' Home in Calabasas CA Level 5 Smooth Finish

Smooth Wall Finish

For more information please see our main site

AC Interiors Drywall
AC Interiors Drywall

Serving a Wide Range of Areas to Include:

Living room drywall hanging, taping
Living room drywall hanging and taping

Entire home in Calabasas, CA complete demo and patch all arch openings. Hung about 300 sheets of drywall 5/8' taped and skim coated to a level 5 smooth finish.

All of the existing walls were skim coated 2-3 coats of joint compound then sanded to smooth ready for primer.

​The finished appearance of a wall or ceiling is largely dependent upon the quality of the framing job and the care exercised in applying the drywall panels. The better the framing and cladding, the easier it is to have a near-perfect wall. Once that is accomplished, the last remaining challenge is to finish the joints to meet your appearance expectations.

The term "Levels 1-5 Smooth Wall Finish" refers to the different levels of finish applied to drywall surfaces. These levels are standardized by the drywall industry, and they define the degree of smoothness and quality in the finishing process. Here's a brief overview of each level:

Level 1:

This is the most basic level and involves simply taping and mudding the joints between drywall sheets. The finish is not intended to be visible, as it is typically covered by another material like texture or wallpaper.

Level 2:

In addition to taping and mudding, Level 2 involves applying a coat of joint compound over the fasteners and accessories. The finish is suitable for areas where the surface will be covered with heavy texture or where a more finished surface is not required.

Level 3:

Level 3 is a more refined finish, suitable for areas where the walls will receive a light to medium texture or where the surface will be painted. It involves an additional coat of joint compound over the tape and fasteners, and the surface is relatively smooth.

Level 4:

This level is suitable for areas where the finish will be visible with a non-textured paint. Level 4 involves one additional coat of joint compound over Level 3, with increased attention to smoothing and feathering the edges of the compound. The result is a smooth and even surface.

Level 5:

Level 5 is the highest level of finish and is recommended for areas with critical lighting conditions, such as those with glossy paints. It involves an additional skim coat of joint compound over the entire surface to minimize the visibility of joints, fasteners, and imperfections. The finish is smooth and ready for a high-quality paint application.

When specifying a smooth wall finish, it's essential to communicate the desired level of finish with your contractor or drywall professional. The choice of level depends on the intended use of the space, lighting conditions, and the final appearance you want to achieve.

How to Do Smooth Finish

Achieving a smooth wall finish with drywall involves careful preparation, application, and finishing. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you achieve a smooth wall:

Materials and Tools:

Drywall sheets

Joint compound (mud)

Drywall tape

Drywall screws

Joint knives (4-inch, 6-inch, and 10-inch)

Drywall sandpaper or sanding screen

T-square or straight edge

Mud pan

Sanding pole or sanding block

Primer and paint

Step 1: Install Drywall

Measure and Cut: Measure the wall, cut drywall sheets to fit, and install them using screws.

Tape Seams: Apply drywall tape to seams, pressing it into a thin layer of joint compound.

Step 2: First Coat (Taping Coat)

Mix Joint Compound: Mix joint compound to a creamy consistency.

Apply Joint Compound: Using a 4-inch knife, apply a thin coat of joint compound over the taped seams. Feather the edges to blend with the wall.

Step 3: Second Coat (Fill Coat)

Widen Seams: For the second coat, use a 6-inch knife to widen the area covered with joint compound.

Apply Second Coat: Apply a second coat of joint compound, feathering the edges.

Step 4: Third Coat (Finish Coat)

Widen Further: For the final coat, use a 10-inch knife to widen the area covered with joint compound.

Apply Final Coat: Apply a third and final coat, ensuring a smooth and even finish. Feather the edges well.

Step 5: Sanding

Allow to Dry: Allow the joint compound to dry completely.

Sand Smooth: Use fine-grit sandpaper or a sanding screen to smooth the surface. Sand in a circular motion, blending the edges.

Step 6: Primer and Paint

Prime: Apply a primer to the smooth, sanded surface.

Paint: Once the primer is dry, paint the wall with your chosen paint color.


Lighting is Key: Adequate lighting helps identify imperfections. Shine a light across the wall to catch any bumps or uneven areas.

Use Quality Tools: Invest in good-quality joint knives and sandpaper for a smoother finish.

Patience is a Virtue: Allow each coat of joint compound to dry completely before applying the next one.

By following these steps and paying attention to detail, you can achieve a smooth and professional-looking finish on your drywall.


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