I think the invention of drywall is one of the most significant additions to the construction world in the last hundred years. It reduces building costs, saves time, and is easy to work with.
If you’re a DIYer looking to renovate at home but aren’t sure about using drywall, here are some of the most common Drywall FAQs I’ve heard over the years.
Affiliate Disclosure: As a disclaimer, please note that some of the links included in this article are affiliate links. This means that if you click on one of these links and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. We only recommend products or services that we believe can add value to our readers. Your support through these links is greatly appreciated and helps us to keep creating helpful content. As an Amazon Associate and affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
What is Drywall, and How is it Used in Construction?
Drywall, also known as gypsum board or sheetrock, is a simple building material used for walls and ceilings. It is made of gypsum plaster sandwiched between two thick sheets of paper or fiberglass.
How is Drywall Installed?
Drywall installation typically involves attaching the drywall sheets to the framing using drywall screws or nails, then covering the joints and fastener heads with joint compound, and finally, sanding and painting the surface.
What are the Different Types of Drywall Available?
That’s right; there are different types of drywall, including regular drywall, fire-resistant drywall, moisture-resistant drywall, and soundproof drywall. Each one has its purpose and intended use.
- Regular Drywall: For standard use in spaces like bedrooms, living rooms, and ceilings.
- Fire-Resistant Drywall: Best used in kitchens, around fireplaces, etc.
- Moisture-Resistant Drywall: Meant for bathrooms, basements, and other high-moisture areas.
- Soundproof Drywall: For offices, studios, etc.
What are the Benefits of Using Drywall?
Drywall offers several benefits including:
- Ease of installation
- Added stability
- Sound Proofing
- Fire Resistance
- Easy to install shelving
- Easy to repair
How Do You Repair Drywall Holes and Cracks?
Repairing Small Holes and Cracks in Drywall
Small holes and cracks (such as nail or anchor holes) can be easily repaired with Spackle, a putty knife and a sanding sponge. I like DAP Drydex because it goes on pink and then turns white when it’s dried so you don’t have to guess when it’s ready. Simply use the putty knife to apply a small amount of spackle into the hole, wipe away any excess, allow to dry and then sand smooth with a sanding sponge and then it’s ready for paint.
Repairing Larger Holes and Cracks in Drywall
Begin by cutting out a rectangular piece of drywall at least two inches larger than the damaged area. Place that piece of drywall on top of the damaged section and trace the outline. From there, you can cut out the damaged area with a jab saw. Insert the new piece into the new rectangular hole, apply Joint tape and Joint Compound and allow to dry. Once the compound is dry, sand smooth with a sanding block. You will need to apply a Primer like Kilz Drywall to seal the drywall before painting with your preferred paint.
How Do You Finish Drywall to Achieve a Smooth Surface?
Finishing drywall involves applying a thin layer of joint compound over the joints and screw heads, allowing it to dry, then sand the surface smoothly and applying paint or other finish. I always recommend a coat of primer on all new drywall.
What are the Standard Drywall Sizes and Thicknesses?
Standard drywall sheet sizes are 4’x8,’ and 4’x12′, and they come in thicknesses of 1/4″, 3/8″, and 1/2″, with ½” being the most common.
How Do You Calculate the Number of Drywall Sheets Needed for a Project?
To calculate the number of drywall sheets you’ll need for a project, I’d advise you to measure the square footage of the walls and then divide it by the square footage of a single sheet of drywall. Also, always add at least 10% more than you need to allow for mistakes.
How Do You Hang Drywall on Ceilings?
It’s no simple task and requires a bit of muscle. Hanging drywall on a ceiling involves lifting each sheet over your head and holding it in place while attaching the drywall to the framing using drywall screws or nails. I recommend having a friend help with this process; however, if you are working on your own, I would suggest using a drywall lift. Many times, you can rent one of these from your local hardware store for the day. Once you’ve secured the drywall to the ceiling, follow the same steps using joint tape, joint compound and sanding sponges to prep the surface for paint.
How Do You Attach Drywall to Metal Studs?
You should attach drywall to metal studs using Fine Thread Drywall Screws (also known as S-Type Screws). This type of screw is self-threading and cuts through and secures better to metal studs than a standard course thread drywall screw.
What are the Tools and Materials Needed for Drywall Installation?
The tools you’ll need for drywalling include:
- Drywall Screws
- Corner Bead for outside corners
- Joint Tape or Joint Mesh
- Bucket of Joint Compound
- Jab Saw
- Utility Knife (with extra blades)
- Drywall Trowel
- Drywall Mud Pan
- Sanding Sponges
How Do You Properly Cut Drywall?
To cut drywall, score the surface with a utility knife and snap the board along the scored line. You get an excellent, clean cut that way. If you need to cut out a hole for a outlet, a jab saw is a great option. This MECWORK Jab saw is a great option since it comes with 3 interchangeable saw heads to battle any material you might come across or this 4 in 1 Drywall Multitool is a great option if your toolbox is short on space.
What are the Best Drywall Screws and Anchors to Use?
The best drywall screws are specifically designed for drywall and come in different lengths. They’re usually black. Anchors suitable for drywall include toggle bolts, Molly bolts, and self-drilling anchors.
How Do You Deal with Uneven Walls When Installing Drywall?
Even in a brand-new home, you will run into uneven walls. It’s just the nature of the game. Shimming or furring can be used to level the surface before installation to deal with uneven walls when installing drywall.
What are Fire-Rated Drywall Options?
Fire-rated drywall is often called Type X drywall, which is more fire-resistant than regular drywall, and you can find it at any home and hardware store.
How Do You Install Drywall Over Existing Walls?
To install drywall over existing walls, you’ll need to attach the sheets to the existing wall using drywall screws or nails, then cover the joints and fastener heads with joint compound, and finally, sand and paint the surface.
I always recommend homeowners remove any old drywall materials first; otherwise, you lose floor space.
What is the Best Way to Soundproof Drywall?
You can use soundproofing materials like acoustic insulation, soundproofing drywall, and soundproofing compounds.
How Do You Deal with Moisture and Mold Issues on Drywall?
The first step is dealing with moisture in drywall is finding and fixing the source of the moisture. Once you’ve corrected that (for example: a leaky pipe), you can move on to fixing the drywall itself. I highly recommend using a drywall moisture meter to determine the level of saturation before deciding which approach to use.
How to deal with surface moisture on drywall
If the moisture has not saturated the drywall, you can use several solutions to clean the surface of the drywall. Below are a few of my favorites (and BONUS, two of them, you probably already have in your cabinet!) Make sure to wear an N95 mask or respirator to keep yourself safe when dealing with mold.
- RMR Brands Complete Mold Killer & Stain Remover Bundle
- Household Vinegar – Simply fill a spray bottle with household vinegar, spray on the drywall and allow to dry.
- 3% Hydrogen Peroxide – Fill a spray bottle with standard 3% Hydrogen Peroxide, wait 10 minutes for it to stop bubbling and then use a scrub brush and water to clean the area then wipe dry.
Scrub the affected area clean and wipe dry with any of the above methods. I recommend following this step with a sealing primer like Kilz Restoration to hinder water stains from reoccurring.
How to Repair Saturated Drywall
If you used the handy drywall moisture meter mentioned earlier, any reading above 17% moisture has lost its structural integrity (in addition to being potentially harmful to your health). At these levels you need to cut out the affected area (plus an extra 12-18 inches to account for wicking) and replace with new drywall.
How Do You Remove Drywall Without Damaging the Wall Underneath?
Removing drywall without damaging the wall underneath is essential because you want an excellent surface to install new drywall. So, start by cutting the drywall into smaller pieces, removing the fasteners, and not damaging the framing or any electrical or plumbing behind the drywall.
What are the Common Mistakes to Avoid When Drywalling?
Common mistakes to avoid when drywalling include not adequately securing the drywall, not properly finishing the joints, and not correctly sanding the surface.
How Do You Paint Drywall to Achieve a Professional Finish?
To achieve a professional finish when painting your new drywall, it’s important to prepare the surface by cleaning, filling any holes or cracks, and sanding until it’s smooth.
I always use high-quality paint and primer and apply it in multiple thin coats, allowing each coat to dry before applying the next. Use a paint roller and brush to achieve a smooth finish and a quality paint brush for the corners and edges.
I hope these 21 Drywall FAQs will help you better understand the product and how to work with it. As I mentioned, it’s an essential product with tons of different uses and is incredibly easy to work with.