FAQ About Drywall
Drywall doesn’t have to be all that difficult to deal with, just as long as you have the right materials, tools, and mindset. Whether you want to buy drywall for a new project, tear down existing drywall, or do a renovation, you’ll need an understanding of the material.
Here are some commonly asked questions to help you get started:
How can I plan ahead?
You’ll want to measure each wall and ceiling on which the drywall is to be installed. The lengths should be tallied to give you an idea of what is needed. Keep in mind that drywall is typically sold in panels up to 16 feet long, so for an 8 ½ – 9 foot ceiling, you may want to select 54-inch high drywall that will span the ceiling with a single horizontal seam.
Checking access is important too. Can a truck easily get close to your home? What if you need drywall for an upper story? Will the sheets or planks fit through an open window? Make the area as accessible as possible.
Is vertical or horizontal installation better?
It depends on the project, although in most residential buildings where the walls are less than 9-feet high, a horizontal installation is usually considered ideal, as it can reduce the lineal footage of seams by a considerable amount (as much as 25%) over vertical attachment.
What if bubbles appear under the drywall paper?
To get rid of bubbles, carefully cut out the area with a razor knife; they won’t flatten down otherwise. After cutting the affected area out, smooth coat over the top. If a bubble involves most of the corner, take the time to scrape or sand off the mud, and then pull the corner off. Place a full-metal corner on.
Should damaged drywall be repaired or completely replaced?
It depends on the extent of the damage. A minor damage or small crack due to nail popping isn’t very difficult to repair. If there is a more serious problem, or large hole, replacement is probably for the best – especially if there is mold infestation spreading throughout the drywall.
How can I prevent misalignment with the framing around windows and doors?
Be sure to nail the framing material together with care. When attaching the drywall around doors and windows, the screws should be kept very close to the edges so that they will be covered up by the casing. Avoid putting screws out of the wide surface of the header. Just a slight misalignment, and the fasteners will break through the drywall.
Should I do a drywall project myself or hire a professional to do it?
It depends on your level of experience as well as the scope of the project. You can probably handle a few repairs yourself. A full installation or replacement, however, should probably be done by the experts. Check with your drywall supplier to see if they also offer repair or installation services.
Go ahead and buy drywall once you feel that you have a good grasp on the material and how it should be used. Be sure to order from a reliable manufacturer!