Drywall installation is a large part of becoming a successful home renovation contractor, like the team at EZ Service. Also, it is an important skill for DIY projects. In order to implement this skill, you must know all the dos and don’ts of drywall installation. This article will show you exactly that.
If these do’s and don’ts seem too much to keep track of and out of your skill range, you can always look for help from professionals used to handling drywall, such as The Patch Boys of Will County or a local professional if you are out of their range.
Do Use The Right Amount of Screws Per Sheet
In the world of drywall, screws are what hold it to the studs. When doing a drywall installation, always use screws that have been designed for this purpose. These screws have rough threads near the tip in order to help them grab onto the sheetrock, and they will prevent it from slipping during installation or when finishing. The threads of the drywall screw must be able to grab onto the sheetrock securely. If they don’t have enough thread, it’s going to either snap off or slide during installation and wreck the wall completely.
Also, you need to know how many screws to use per drywall sheet. If you use too many, it can create weak spots in the walls that will easily break under pressure. Generally, 28-36 screws per sheet is a safe bet. To properly determine exactly how many screws you need for each sheet, divide the length of a sheet by 16 inches. This will give you the number of screws you need, but remember that walls are rarely 16-inches straight.
Do Use The Right Screwdriver Bit
You don’t want to strip your drywall screws, now do you? Using the wrong screwdriver bit is one way to do just that. It’s a good idea to have more than one size of the bit, so you can choose the right one for the job.
The different screwdrivers and their purpose are:
- Slotted (flathead): This screwdriver has a flat edge, and it’s used for common screws.
- Phillips (crosshead): You can recognize this by its cross shape, which makes it easier to apply even pressure on the screw. It is considered the most commonly used fastener in construction.
- Pozidriv: This screw has a similar cross shape as the Phillips screwdriver, but it is finer. It’s used for screws that have been countersunk.
- Robertson: This screw has a square head and it’s used for square drive screws.
Do Check For Square After Screwing In Each Sheet
It is important to check that your sheets are being screwed in at perfect 90 degrees angles. A stud finder and level will help you properly install each sheet while keeping it square. To do this, measure the diagonals of the sheet. If they are both the same length, then you’re on track to a perfect 90-degree angle.
Do Avoid Disturbing The Joint Tape Until It’s Dry
When screwing in your drywall sheets, avoid disturbing any joint tape until it is completely dry. If you do this, it will increase the chances of ripping and ruining your work. To avoid doing this while you’re screwing in the drywall, hold it up against the stud while you’re working.
Also, if you do not allow your joint compound to dry completely, it will cause damage to your wall. This can vary on how much of the substance has been applied and weather conditions.
Do Not Overcrowd The Area Around Studs
When doing a drywall installation, you want to make sure that there is enough space surrounding your studs so they can be accessible during the next step of the process. This also protects them from damage and keeps them solid and strong.
Do Not Cover Joint Tapes With Lath
If the joint tape is covered by lath, it will create a weak spot in your wall that can easily break or be damaged. This is because it leaves no room for the drywall compound to seep into the crack and make it stronger. When doing a drywall installation, leave space around the joint tape so it can be accessible during the next step in the process.
It’s important to install drywall with lath when surrounding walls are made of plaster. If you’re not installing it over lath, then there is a chance that it will crack and damage your wall.
Do Not Install Drywall Over Paper And Paperboard
Before a drywall installation, make sure you check the paper on the wall to ensure that it is not of a material that can be damaged by water or moisture. This also holds true if there is any form of paper on the floor as well.
Also, do not install drywall over paint. Doing so will cause the new sheet to stick right onto the old paint, ruining both of them. This is true whether the wall has been painted or not. If there is already a layer of paper on top of your walls, then you should adhere to it before installing any more layers.
Don’t Overtighten The Screws
This is a mistake that so many people make in drywall installation: they overtighten their screws. When this happens, it can cause wall damage such as large dimples in the surface of the wall. It also causes dips and ridges that will need to be covered up.
It’s important that you read the installation guide for each screw before moving forward, as they can vary in terms of how tight they need to be.
Don’t Use Tangent Edges On Drywall Corners
If you’re using drywall and it has a tangent edge, make sure to put down joint tape before doing your installation. This is because the compound can damage the drywall if it seeps underneath the tape and hits the corner.
To avoid this, always use a corner bead to protect your drywall and its edges.
Don’t Use Nails Instead Of Screws For Drywall Installation
Nails will not be able to hold the weight of drywall and can cause it to fall off, ending up as a big mess on the floor. It’s important that you use screws all around the drywall when doing your installation.
Don’t Take The Sharp Edges Off Of Drywall
When doing a drywall installation, make sure to leave the sharp edges on. This is because they help you cut through the drywall with ease and save time compared to trying to get your blade to fit in between the ridges.
Installing drywall is not something that should be taken lightly. There are many different mistakes that can occur, ranging from simple to more complex. However, if you make sure to follow all of the do’s and don’ts of drywall installation, then your installation will be strong and sturdy.