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>Home >Basement_construction >How to hang drywall

How to hang drywall: A step-by-step guide

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Finally! A step-by-step guide to hanging drywall! This section will guide you along as you hang sheetrock on your newly framed walls!

Drywall tools:

  • 1/2" or 5/8" Drywall sheets
  • Carpenter's knife (with plenty of spare blades)
  • Drywall rasp (to smooth rough edges)
  • Drywall T-Square
  • Drywall lift
  • A smooth, flat surface
  • Drywall screws (for inch drywall and wood studs use 1 " coarse thread screws.)
  • Power drill (with Philips head driver or drywall dimpler)
  • Several sharp pencils
  • Red lipstick (Don't worry, I'll explain this in cutting around outlets & openings)
Here are some common tools you'll need as you install sheetrock in a basement. [Click to enlarge]
     Drywall tools of the trade
             [Click to enlarge]
Buy a drywall dimpling tool for your power drill. It will ensure that your screws go to the perfect depth every time! [Click to enlarge]
A drywall 'dimpler'        
[Click to enlarge]          

How to install drywall: Step-by-step

1. Before you start, walk around the room and mark the floor at the center of each stud. This will help you hit the studs when you're sinking the screws.

2. Measure the length of your wall and plan your layout so the seams will hit the studs when possible. You may need to toenail additional studs when necessary.

3. Measure the height from the floor to the ceiling joists, and subtract about inch. Cut the drywall to that height. (See how to cut drywall.)

4. If you need to cut any openings for outlets, switches, etc., see cutting around outlets & openings before continuing.

Diagram of how to add drywall screws to secure the board to the framing. [Click to enlarge]

Using a drywall dimpler will help you countersink the screws to the perfect depth every time!
5. Raise the drywall about " off the floor using a drywall lift or other spacer, and begin inserting screws while holding the board firmly in place. This part is much easier with a helper.

6. Using an electric drill and dimpler (or a drywall drill if you have one), begin to secure the board with screws spaced about 12" along the perimeter, and along each stud. It's best to start at one corner, and 'fan out' in both directions toward the opposite corner.

7. Use a level to draw a vertical line along each stud location. This will help you avoid missing the studs as you move up from the floor.

Use a level to draw a vertical line at all stud locations. This will help you avoid missing the studs as you drive screws as you move up the wall.

8. Be sure that all screws are sunk slightly below the surface. Carefully rub a small scraper over each screw head. If you can feel the screw, carefully use a screwdriver to tighten it (without ripping through the paper).

Next, see these sections:

Hanging drywall - Drywall installation tips.
How to cut drywall
- For the basic, straight cuts.
How to cut around openings and outlets - For cutting around switch boxes, outlets, light fixtures and other tricky areas.
How to finish drywall - Learn to finish drywall like an expert by seeing how an expert finishes drywall!


Construction Topics

Tools you'll need

The 3-4-5 rule

How to frame a wall

How to attach walls

How to install insulation

Drywall estimating

How to hang drywall: Step-by-step

How to cut drywall

How to cut around outlets and openings

Drywall installation tips

How to frame a door

How to trim a door to fit

How to finish a door

How to frame around poles

How to finish drywall

How to sand drywall

Tips for buying, finishing, & installing baseboard molding

How to fix squeaky floors

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