Getting the right drywall size for your next home improvement project is of the essence. Today, there are various sizes available on the market but your choice mainly depends on the application and what type of drywall you want. The wall panels are not as thick as the ceiling boards while areas, where higher fire resistance is a must, also need thick sheets. What drywall you choose is also subject to load restrictions, structure requirements, and local standards. And here we are going to tell you the common dimensions of drywall.
The standard width for residential drywall installation is 4′ or 48 inches, if you will. Depending on the size of the room, you will need two, three or more sheets to cover the wall area and join the sheets with tape and joint compound. In some cases, boards can be ordered in a different width but you need to ask your drywall contractor about that.
The length of drywall starts from 8′ and can be as high as 16′. The standard length for most applications is 4′ x 8′ – that’s 4 feet wide and 8 feet long. These cover the needs of average room heights while the panels can be installed either horizontally or vertically. If your walls are taller, you can get 4′ x 9′, 4′ x 10′, 4′ x 12′ or 4′ x 16′ boards. These tall boards come handy in rooms with high ceilings for a seamless installation. That’s because you will have fewer joints and thus a better appearance.
The standard thickness of drywall is ½”. Drywall companies use half-inch boards for most internal walls. There are also thinner boards (1/4”) which are often used when you want to cover an existing wall while they often serve in curved walls. Thicker boards include 5/8” drywall which is used for ceilings for the avoidance of sagging and also in furnace rooms and garages since these panels are fire resistant.
How to choose the right size drywall
Smaller and thinner 2′ x 2” boards are used for patch work. That’s when there is damage and a simple drywall repair won’t solve the problem. In this case, you can get smaller boards to cut at the size of the damaged part of the drywall and then fit on the surface.
What you should know about drywall sizes is that they often vary based on what type of drywall you want which in turn is subject to your home project. For example, moisture resistant drywall is found in ½” and 5/8” thicknesses and up to 12′ high. Type X and type C drywall is 5/8” thick and up to 12′ high.
So you need to start the other way around. You need to consider which part of the home you need to cover. For instance, garages usually need to meet fire codes and thus need 5/8” thick drywall. Moisture areas, like the bathroom and the basement, should be better walled with 5/8” drywall and so should the ceilings.
Needless to say that the thicker and longer the drywall the heavier. So, it’s always best to trust a drywall installer but need to calculate the labor work too in your expenses. But it’s worth the extra buck since the job must be re-done if not done correctly the first time. All in all, a good place to start your next remodeling is to ask yourself questions. First of all, is this a remodeling or you want drywall to patch a wall defect? Is the room wet? Is there a local fire code that gives you no option but to choose a thick drywall? Once you answer these questions, the decision will come much easier.