Drywall building tips for a smooth finish

Drywall building tips for a smooth finish

The best drywalling is one that can not be seen by the eye. Rather, if installed properly, drywall should give the look of a flat, smooth wall surface.

While this is the ideal, many homeowners can testify that is not always the case. Failure to install drywall properly can cause expensive eyesores for clients in the future. This is why contractors need to be skilled at drywalling, have the right tools and a good technique.

Here are some tips for moving your drywall capabilities from ‘okay’ to ‘seamless’.

Start with a plan

It is always best to plan ahead, even before you step onto the job site. As you look around the room keep your eyes open for anything that may pose a problem for a smooth fit. Have a good strategy for any issues or complications you spot.

Think about the different types of drywall material including thickness and size to determine the right fit for the job.

Take time to ensure the safety of the area you are working in. There needs to be lots of ventilation and the tools and materials need to be stored properly.

If possible, include the framing contractor in the planning stage. Having a solid frame that is properly installed will make the drywalling job that much easier.

Don’t neglect to check the regulations and ensure you are complying with local building codes.

Work with the right tools

Drywalling requires unique tools that contractors should make sure are in their tool kits. These include:

  • Sanding tools
  • Utility knives
  • Taping knives
  • Screw gun
  • Mixing tools
  • Tape measure
  • Framing square
  • Chalk-line
  • Joint tape
  • Joint compound or mud

Most professionals prefer to use fiberglass mesh tape rather than paper tape. There are also several kinds of compound available, depending on the needs of the job.

Corner beads are also a necessity to cover outside corners and protect the corner surface of the wall. There are a variety of types on the market depending on your client’s preference.

If you are short on the necessary supplies, our website (SupplyExpert.ca) can help you find the best product at the best price.

While there are many other tools that prove helpful during drywall installation these are the basic ones you need to get the job completed right.

Secrets of the pros

A professional can make the drywall installation seem easy. Here are some extra tips to help simplify the installation process.

When cutting always measure twice and cut once. An improperly sized panel will be the first sign of a poor installation job.

It is recommended you use screws when securing the panels in place as they hold better than nails. Screws are less likely to pop out and cause problems. Be sure that the screws are the correct size.

Hang ceilings first then the walls. When hanging the ceiling cut it a little short to make room for the edge of the wall panels.

Instead of using a seam over a doorway cut the doorway out of a full sheet. This will help prevent cracks that can occur over time by the opening and closing of the door.

Place cut edges along any outside corners. If you try to use tapered edges on corners it can make installing the corner of the bead difficult.

Keep your tools clean when working with compound as any dried-on mud can leave streaks or flakes.

Mark the framing locations before you put up the drywall. This will help you know you are putting the screws in the correct place.

Check that the panel will fit over any outlet boxes before you put it into place. This will save extra time on repairing mistakes that are often made when trying to cut out the opening after it has been installed.

It is also a good idea to make sure that any wires and pipes near the drywall will not be damaged.

Don’t worry about getting a tight fit when you are hanging the panels. Instead leave a gap about 1/8-inch wide at the edges.

Don’t discard any unused drywall. Keep left over panels or panel sections/pieces to use in another room or on another job.


With a few tips and the right tools contractors can be sure their drywall instillation will be done correctly. Don’t forget to sweep and vacuum any drywall dust to keep the area clean. The extra time will help secure good repour with your client.

Properly installed drywall may not be noticed by the eye but it can go a long way to impressing your client and helping build a good reputation for yourself.