Bob Vila Radio: Installing Drywall

Although the two words are often used interchangeably, sheetrock is actually a brand name for the generic drywall, which is gypsum plaster sandwiched between two sheets of paper or fiberglass. Any way you say it, drywall makes finishing walls very practical.

Hanging Drywall


Listen to BOB VILA ON INSTALLING DRY WALL, or read the text below:

For large jobs or those with very high ceilings, hire a pro. But most smaller jobs can be tackled by do-it-yourselfers.

Before you get started, run the side of a hammer head along the framing to check for uneven surfaces and any protruding staples or nails. The tools you’ll need are a straightedge and measuring tape for sizing your pieces, a utility knife for scoring and snapping, and a keyhole saw or rotary tool for cutting holes for outlets and windows. You’ll need about a pound of nails or screws for every five sheets of drywall.

You want a pre-mixed joint compound that’s not too quick-drying if you’re a beginner so you have a grace period to work in. Pros use about five gallons of compound for every hundred square feet.

Bob Vila Radio is a newly launched daily radio spot carried on more than 60 stations around the country (and growing). You can get your daily dose here, by listening to—or reading—Bob’s 60-second home improvement radio tip of the day.

For more on drywall, consider:

Drywall 101
Quick Tip: Choosing Drywall
How To: Install a Drywall Anchor