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Drywall Nail Pops

Walls in your home shift when foundation issues are present. As your walls shift, nails may pop through the drywall and create holes.

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Foundation damage probably makes you think of cracked floors or a tilted house, so you might be surprised to know that nail pops are also a sign of foundation problems. Since the walls of your home rely on a stable foundation, even the slightest shifts can cause nails to pop out of wall studs. If you’re noticing holes or cracked paint on your walls, read on!

What Causes Drywall Nail Pops?

Soil Washout

If an area experiences massive amounts of rainfall or other precipitation, the moisture can seep into the soil and make it muddy and soft. Since your home’s foundation rests on top of the soil, the muddiness will most likely cause foundation settlement. Foundations are heavy structures, so the washed-out soil will not be able to support the weight of your home’s foundation. 

On top of this, precipitation of any kind causes soil erosion. Soil particles will get washed away with a storm and cause the soil to become structurally weaker as a result. This also causes foundation settlement, which causes walls to shift and nails to pop.

Dry Soil and Drought

On the opposite side of the spectrum comes dry soil. During a drought, or in a dry environment, soil makes it lack the moisture content needed to stay tightly packed. Without this moisture, the soil shrinks in volume and becomes brittle – cracking and crumbling under almost any amount of pressure. 

When the soil becomes small and weak like this, a gap opens between your foundation and the ground. Gravity takes over from here and causes your foundation to sink. As your foundation sinks, it might also crush through the brittle soil. You can see how this spells bad news for your foundation, and by extension, the nails behind your drywall.

Poor Compaction

Poor compaction refers to how tightly packed soil is. Most often, this issue arises during the construction of a new building. Contractors may transport soil, also known as fill soil, from a separate location. During this process, contractors may not pack the soil tightly enough as they fill in the land to begin construction. 

Poor compaction means there will be small pockets of air present throughout the soil. Over time, the soil will weaken under the weight of your home’s foundation. Once again, your foundation becomes damaged, and the drywall nails in your walls pop out of place.


Yes, a trusted handyman or drywall contractor can replace popped nails and close any drywall holes. However, you’ll want to invest in foundation repair as well in order to permanently prevent nail pops from arising in the future. Peak Structural has the solutions needed for quality foundation repair. 

One of our specialists is happy to come to inspect your home and identify the root cause of your foundation damage in order to fix it for good. In summary, Drywall pops can be fixed immediately by a handyman, and permanently by a foundation repair company.

Nail pops can be identified in a few different ways. The easiest way to tell if a nail pop has occurred is by looking for small open holes in your drywall. Sometimes, a popped nail may not get all the way through the drywall. In this case, you will find a small, raised bump on your drywall, and you might also notice cracked paint around the area where the popped nail is located. Any small imperfection in your wall is worth a closer look to confirm whether it is a popped nail.

While nail pops may seem like a small issue, they indicate a much larger problem – foundation damage. Ignoring nail pops is like ignoring a small crack in a drinking glass. Over time, and with continuous use, the crack will slowly grow larger. 

You may not notice it right away, but eventually, the entire glass will shatter. Your foundation acts in much the same way. Ignoring any sign of foundation damage just delays the inevitable. Since nail pops are a sign of foundation damage, don’t ignore them!

Call Us for a Free Inspection

Your home deserves a solid foundation. If you’re noticing drywall cracks or any other signs of foundation damage, it’s time for a foundation inspection. Peak has been serving homeowners in DenverColorado Springs, and Grand Junction region for nearly 20 years, and we’re committed to bringing the same dependable service to your home. 

If you want to learn more about foundation repair options, or if you want to schedule a free inspection from one of our specialists, contact us today. Peak Structural is here to help with any problem your foundation might be facing!

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