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Drywall is a great way to easily cover the studs, electrical, and piping that hide inside your walls. You can even use drywall to replace cracked plastered walls without the technical expertise needed to smoothly cover a wall with plaster.

Hanging drywall goes through three steps. First, check the area for obstructions which would prevent you from hanging the drywall (ex. pipes, ductwork). Secondly, hang the drywall on the ceiling. Finally, drywall the walls.



Skill Level & Time to Complete

  Based on a simple room of about 15’ x 20’
  • Beginner - 10 hours 
  • Intermediate - 8 hours
  • Advanced - 4 hours
  - Always install ceiling drywall first before installing the walls.
  - Make sure the blade on your utility knife is sharp to avoid tearing.
  - Hang drywall with the goal of minimizing the number of seams. The taping will go faster and the end result will be better.
  - If you recruit the help of a friend, drywalling will go much faster and will be easier to complete.


Materials List
   Drywall sheets
   1-1/4 inch drywall nails
   1-1/4 inch drywall screws
Tools List
   Claw Hammer
   Drywall T-square
   Utility knife
   Utility blade refills
   Drywall saw
   Screw gun
   Carpenter's Pencil
   Chalk line
   Tape Measure




Before you drywall your walls, you should install ceiling drywall first. Using a four-foot level, check the wall studs for any warped boards, and replace any that you find so that you have a level area with which to work.

2. Check the area for obstructions like protruding pipe and ductwork. Install furring strips to the framing to extend the wall so the drywall will hang flat.

Wall Installation

You will install the drywall sheets horizontally starting with the top section of the wall. Mark the locations of studs on the ceiling and floor to help you locate them later.
4. If you must hang top sheets on the wall by yourself, hammer in four nails about 1” into the studs about 50” inches from the top of the wall. This will allow you to lift the sheet and rest it on the nails. Continue hanging the top portion of the wall before hanging the bottom.
5. Referring to the marks you made on the floor and ceiling, drive screws, or pairs of nails spaced 2 inches apart, into the studs so that their heads just dimple the surface but do not break through the paper facing. Later you will fill the dimples with joint compound.


6. Along the perimeter of the drywall sheet, drive the fasteners 3/8” from all edges and space them 7” inches apart. For the interior of each sheet, drive screws into the studs about 12 inches apart. If you miss a stud, pull the nail or screw out and try again, you can fill the hole with joint compound when you tape the seams and corners.
7. For panels, which will cover a vent or light fixture, do not completely fasten the board. Using a rotary drill, cut out around the border of the vent or fixture. Then finish fastening the board.
8. For panels, which will cover a window area, completely fasten the drywall around the edge of the window and then cut out the window using a rotary drill or drywall saw.
9. When cutting the drywall across its width, first measure and mark the cut line, lay the straightedge along the line, and cut through the paper face with the knife.
10. Next, tip the panel slightly up off the floor or worktable and snap it downward to break through the core.


11. Turn the panel over and slice through the paper backing with a utility knife.
12. To cut the drywall along its length, use a chalk line to mark your line.
13. Carefully use a utility knife to score the paper over the first pass.
14. Cut deeper on the second pass.
15. When hanging the bottom portion of the walls, you should stagger the seams of the drywall for stability and greater strength. Therefore, start the second row with a half sheet.


16. The tapered edges should always butt together. Cut the panels about 1/2-inch short to compensate for any unevenness in the floor or ceiling. Any gap at the bottom of the wall will be covered with your baseboard.
17. To raise each panel into place, set the panel on two foot levers and lift it into position while you drive the first screws or nails.

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