Hanging Drywall Smart

I float all my butt joints between studs and create a recessed joint with what are popularly called “rock splicers.” With these, don’t secure the butt end of each drywall panel to the framing. Instead, let it fall in between studs or joists.

As you screw the panel’s butt end to the backing, it draws the edge in slightly, creating a recessed joint.

Fasten across the sheet. I do this along studs and joists to flatten the panel against the framing, but it’s critical on ceilings.

Fasten across the sheet, installing screws in sequence to take out any sag. Don’t put one screw in one corner and then jump to the end and fasten it in the opposite corner.

Using a drywall lift is an efficient way to drywall ceilings.

With a lift, I don’t need to worry about tacking a sheet in place—the lift will support the sheet against the joists, allowing me to fasten down the line of every joist.

At windows and door openings, you often have plenty of framing to fasten to. But keep the fasteners close to the opening so they will be covered by the trim.

Put a generous bead of adhesive on every stud. When lifting the sheet, focus on getting one upper corner into place, keeping the sheet away from the wall so you don’t smear the adhesive across the back of the panel.

I simply eyeball the center of the outlet box and poke my hole saw through to mark the location.

Using the router, I plunge in at my mark, move the bit to the edge, jump over that edge, and cut out the box in a counterclockwise direction (opposite the rotation of the bit so it won’t “run” on me).

Ceiling boxes are a bit more difficult to locate because you can’t get your head above the sheet to eyeball the location.

I use a small laser to project a dot on the ceiling to find the box location.

Since you’re aiming for the center, you have a lot of leeway.

All you need is a mark on the ceiling that will allow you to plunge the router bit somewhere in the middle of the box.

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