Cure for Chronic Cracks
Some cracks keep coming back no matter how well you repair them. For those pesky recurring cracks, we prescribe Good-Bye Cracks. It forms an elastic film that stretches and contracts along with the crack. It works best on hairline cracks, but it's worth a try on wider cracks too. Start by cleaning loose material out of the crack and fill it with joint compound. Then spray on two to three light coats of Good-Bye Cracks. The film isn't sandable, so a smooth, even coat is critical (practice on a scrap of cardboard first). When the film dries, prime and paint. You'll find Good-Bye Cracks at some paint stores and home centers. Or search online for 'Good-Bye Cracks.'
Whole Wall Cover-Up
Some walls are so bad that the best fix is to tear them out and install new drywall. Wall liner is the next-best fix. It's basically extra-thick, paintable wallpaper that acts as a big patch over the whole wall. Some versions are smooth; some have a textured or patterned surface. Fill cracks and holes with joint compound, prime the patches and then hang the liner just like wallpaper. A 55-sq.-ft. roll of wall liner costs about $16 at home centers, paint stores and online.