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Learn How to Hang Drywall in 5 Easy Steps

So you’ve decided to test your DIY skills and are going to take a stab at hanging drywall. Awesome! The first step is to get a good idea of how to hang drywall.

Well, that’s where we come in.

Take a look at our quick guide below to give you a basic foundation in how to hang drywall. Gentlemen, start your engines!

Preparation

how to hang drywallWhile we are sure you are a big strong guy (or gal) it is essential to have a partner or assistant that will be able to help you hang the drywall. Moving drywall sheets is going to be pretty tough on your own, not to mention hanging and installing them.

Make sure to check your local building codes for drywall thickness requirements. Usually we go for ½ inch for walls and ⅝ inch for ceilings, but you might have to get a different size to meet requirements.

You will need a few basic items:

  • Drywall
  • Drywall Screws
  • Drywall Joint Compound
  • Tape Measure
  • Drywall saw
  • Screw gun/drill
  • Joint knife
  • Dust mask (wear this!)
  • Safety eye goggles (wear these too!)

The Nitty Gritty

Ceiling

The best way for how to hang drywall is to start from the ceiling. Cut the drywall so it’s around ¼ inch shorter than the width of the ceiling. You want to measure the ceiling from the center of the closest joist, to the wall. Cut the drywall to this size using the drywall saw. The edge of the drywall should be across the middle of a joist/stud. Ask your partner to hold the drywall in place for you. Then you need to screw the drywall screws in the joists around 9 inches apart. Repeat this process for the entire ceiling, until it is completely covered. The screws should be slightly sunk into the surface of the drywall.

Walls

Measure and cut your drywall for the walls. Just FYI, we recommend hanging the drywall vertically rather than horizontally. Depending on the wall size, you may need more than one piece of drywall. Take a look around and jot down where there are outlets or lights that need openings. Measure their distances from the studs, mark them down on the drywall, then cut around these areas to create holes for the outlets to go through. Install the drywall by screwing it to the studs, with each screw around 16 inches apart. Same as with the ceiling, the screws should be slightly sunk into the surface of the drywall.

Finishing

The next step is to “mud” the drywall – this hides the seams where each piece meets the next. This is the easiest part of how to hang drywall. First off, use joint compound and the joint knife to cover the screw holes. The goal is to make them invisible and smooth. Then, do the same thing with the seam of the drywall, and cover it from one side to another to fill the gap completely. Then immediately use drywall tape to tape the joints, using the joint knife to run the tape over the wet joint compound. Then again, use more joint compound to go over the tape. Then wait 24 hours and repeat this joint process again.

So it should go like this:

  1. Run compound over the joints.
  2. Run tape over the wet compound.
  3. Run compound over the tape.
  4. Wait 24 hours (watch a Breaking Bad marathon if you haven’t seen it).
  5. Repeat steps 1-3.
  6. Tell everyone that you know how to hang drywall now!

Then, let us know when you are ready to slap some paint on those walls, and we’ll be happy to take care of it for you!

Photo by shister / CC BY 2.0

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