Quick Set Hot Mud and Drywall Repair

The Pros and Cons of Hot Mud for Drywall Taping and Mudding

By Mark J. Donovan




If you are planning to do some drywall work you may want to consider using quick set hot mud as an alternative to using joint compound. Professional drywall contractors use it all the time on large drywall projects. Quick set hot mud is particularly ideal for making minor drywall repairs if you are looking to make a quick patch.

Although drywall contractors use quick set hot mud regularly on large drywall projects, I would not recommend it for the weekend DIY warrior who has a large drywall project.

As the name implies, quick set hot mud sets up quickly. It also is more difficult to sand than standard joint compound. Thus you really need to know what you are doing if you have a major drywall project.

But again, it is ideal for home owners looking to do smaller drywall repairs. For those DIY homeowners who insist on using quick set hot mud, I would suggest that at a minimum they use the longer drying time muds, such as muds with set times of at least 90 minutes. Quick set hot mud comes in powder form and is sold in bags. It can be purchased with drying times that range from 5 minutes to 210 minutes.

Additional Advantages of Quick Set Hot Mud

One additional benefit of quick set hot mud is that it has less shrinkage. So when copious amounts of it may be used to do a drywall patch repair there is less of a concern of cracking when the mud dries. Thus there is less risk of a crack re-showing itself after the drywall repair is made.

Another key advantage of quick set hot mud is that it includes glue in its make-up. As a result, it is ideal for binding filler materials into drywall holes and cracks.

Disadvantages of Quick Set Hot Mud

As well as the fact that quick set hot mud sets up very quickly, it is difficult to sand. As a result, even professional drywall contractors take steps to avoid having to sand it. Often they use quick set hot mud for only initially taping the drywall. With subsequent top layers of mud applied over the tape, they use standard joint compound. This way they can easily sand the joint compound to achieve smooth wall finishes.

How to Mix Quick Set Hot Mud for a Drywall Repair

To mix up a batch of quick set hot mud, start by pouring a little water into a drywall mud pan.

Next slowly pour into the pan small amounts of the quick set hot mud powder to the manufacturers recommendations. As you do so, mix the powder and water with a small taping knife.

Once you’ve mixed the powder and water to a smooth consistency it is ready for immediate use. If you need to modify the consistency of the mixed quick set hot mud, add the necessary water or powder. However, any adjustment of the consistency should be done prior to applying any of the mud. Do not keep watering down the mixture as it starts to harden up while you are applying it to the wall(s).

It is important to note that as soon as the powder comes in contact with the water it activates the quick set hot mud, and thus the curing clock begins. As a result, you will want to mix up only enough mud that you think you can apply in the prescribed drying time of the mud you purchased.

Also, you want to wait to mix up the mud until you are absolutely ready to begin applying it. For an example, if you purchase a bag of quick set hot mud that has a drying time of 30 minutes, the clock starts ticking on its drying time as soon as you pour it into water. So if you take 5 minutes to mix up the mud, you only have around 20 to 25 minutes to apply it.

How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole EBook

Clean Up

Once you’ve applied the quick set hot mud make sure to wash your drywall taping knife and pan, as well as any other tools that came in contact with the mud, immediately. If you don’t, you will have a much harder time getting it off of them later on.


For information on repairing a large drywall hole, see the “How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole” Ebook from HomeAdditionPlus.com.  The “How to Repair a Large Drywall Hole” Ebook provides step-by-step instructions on how to repair your damaged wall so that it looks as good as new.

See HomeAdditionPlus.com’s Drywall Calculator

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