Drywall, also known as sheetrock, is the most popular type of wall in the United States. It is affordable, versatile, and can be used in any room. Since bathrooms are picky considering the high moisture, it’s important to find good walls for them.
Not all drywall can work for bathrooms, but there are a few that can! Moisture-resistance and mold-resistance and the two key components to bathroom drywall, so keep an eye out for those words.
Types Of Drywall
Not all drywall is created equally. In order to know which type of drywall to use for your project, you’ll need to know the different types of drywall that is available. There are other niche drywalls, but these are the most common.
This drywall comes in four-by-eight foot pieces and is the most common type of drywall. It is used on interiors in living rooms, bedrooms, and kitchens. It is usually white of some kind on one side and a cardboard color on the other side.
Green board is moisture-resistant. However, it is not waterproof. It is not the same as cement board which is more durable and better for areas with high moisture like the bathroom. That said, the green board works fine for bathroom walls.
Blue board is a plasterboard made for backing for plastering. It is also quite water-resistant so it works well in bathrooms and as a base for tile. You can lay the mortar right on the board without taping it.
Purple board drywall is perfect for high moisture areas. It’s more expensive than other drywalls but is an enhanced version of regular drywalls. It can be in contact with water as it is waterproof, rather than water-resistant.
Pretty soon, paper drywall will be a thing found only in old homes. It is replacing paper-covered drywall which isn’t water-resistant, fire-resistant, or mold-resistant. It is currently more expensive than other drywall.
However, as time changes and it becomes the standard. The price will also become the new standard. So, if other drywall starts to disappear, don’t worry. The price of paperless drywall will drop. Since price is the only con, this is a good thing!
Type X Drywall
Type X drywall is thicker drywall that is fire-resistant. The paper is off-white, or ivory, a color that distinguishes it from other drywalls. It isn’t easy to cut with a drywall knife and usually requires a saw.
Before putting up drywall, it’s important to insulate the area. This is primarily important if the wall is an outside wall. Use thicker insulation for colder climates and standard insulation for warmer climates.
Insulation is harmful to breathe directly, so cut it outside and wear a mask when inside, installing it. If you have asthma, don’t handle the insulation, and try to avoid touching the fluffy part, holding onto the paper only when stapling.
When you do put the drywall up, make sure the edges touch and lay flat. A crooked edge can mean difficult mudding and prevent the insulation from doing its job. You want to keep the inside temperature controlled by the inside regulator, not the outside.
After you put insulation up, you can begin installing drywall. Measure and cut your sheetrock, making sure that you leave room on each stud for the sheetrock to be screwed in on both ends. Then, mark each stud on your board.
Always measure at least twice before cutting and check your marks at least three times. You only one to make one cut. Make more and you’ll be wasting money. So take the extra time to make sure all of your marks and cuts are right.
Doing a good job mudding drywall is as important as painting it. Mudding needs to be done even if you cover the board in tile, as taping can help keep air from getting in. Whenever you do mud, make sure to let it dry before doing anything else.
After it dries, it will need to be sanded well. Sanding the mudded area can give you a smooth surface to work with. If you’re going to paint the bathroom drywall, then a smooth surface is absolutely necessary.
If you’re having trouble getting a smooth enough surface, consider stomping. After the mud dries, you can use a brush and stomp the mud on the wall then gently go over it with a smoothing trowel.
Best Bathroom Drywall
Though all types of drywall are useful, you need to find the best drywall for your project. The best type of bathroom drywall depends on where the drywall will go. You don’t want to spend more money than you have to.
If the drywall will be around doors or toilets where they won’t get wet, green board is the best choice. It can work for ceilings as well. But for showers and tile backers, you may take a step up and get cement board for the extra mold resistance.
Applying Tile To Drywall
If you do use cement board and decide to put up tile, it’s important to know everything you need to know for your project. An even groove and layer of mortar is crucial. If the tiles are uneven, they will pull up or crack.
It may take more time to do it right, but you’ll never regret it. If it takes twice as long, or more, that just means it will last at least twice as long. So always encourage the team to do everything to the best of their abilities.
The most efficient way to put tile down is in a staircase pattern. This ensures that the mud won’t have time to dry and you can keep track of the pattern. Moving from one corner on the bottom to the top is ideal.
For a full tutorial on how to install shower tiles, follow this guide. You’ll be taken through the ins and outs, what to avoid, and how to make your project easier.
Pros And Cons Of Drywall
Since there are plenty of other interior wall options, it’s important to make sure that drywall is right for you before you choose it.
- Easy To Install – drywall is one of the easiest walls to install. If you can handle a knife and a drill, you can have an entire room done in a couple of hours. It won’t be finished, but it will be up and ready to go.
- Cheap – this is the main reason that drywall is so popular. It is one of the cheapest wall coverings available. You can buy white board drywall for about $.50 an sqft. To calculate your wall space, try this calculator out.
- Stable – drywall is quite stable as the pieces are large. Most drywall covers four feet at a time. Since most studs are 16in this gives a lot of stability when using screws at least every 16in. Which is what you should do for the best results.
- Lots Of Resistant Options – whether you need fire-resistant drywall behind your oven or water-resistant drywall behind your sink, there is a drywall option for you. With so many options, you can cover every room in your house.
- Easy To Repair – if your drywall gets damaged, it can probably be repaired fairly easily. Unless the damage is great, a simple drywall repair kit can help. Find the best drywall repair kit at an affordable price.
- Can Be Painted – drywall can be painted and painted and painted again. It can also handle wallpaper, so if you get tired of painted walls, or want to cover a bad mud job, you can add wallpaper to the drywall.
- Compatible With Drywall Screws – you can get drywall screws and anchors to hang just about anything you want without the extra support of a stud. Using a stud is recommended, but an anchor can help you reach that stud securely.
- Difficult To Finish – although drywall is easy to install, it is quite difficult to finish out. This is because everything needs to be flushed and the mudding needs to be done very, very well. Hiring a professional is almost necessary.
- Heavy – drywall requires a team lift unless you want dented corners from dropping it. Each piece weighs about 50lbs. To top that off, most drywall comes in two pieces that need cut apart, so that’s over 100lbs.
- Not Very Durable – although drywall is stable, it does break easily. Even a slammed door can break the drywall, leaving a doorknob sized hole. Most drywall will require repairs at least once every year or two.
- Not Authentic – drywall is a great option for most walls but if you want something that feels handcrafted and authentic, then it isn’t for you. Drywall can be modern and painted any color, but it feels artificial.
- Needs Outside Area To Work With – if you’re installing drywall, you will need a good-sized outdoor area. Cutting drywall inside isn’t only messy, but it’s unsafe. The dust particles need air to escape or else they’ll be trapped indoors.
- Hard To Choose Type – since there are many different types of drywall of varying prices, you want to make sure you get the most bang for your buck. Choosing drywall without help can feel impossible.
Is Bathroom Drywall Right For Me?
If you still don’t know if you should use drywall, then you should probably call a professional. They can tell you what type of wall coverings will work for your space. You can hire a contractor just for the advice!