How to Install Drywall With Metal Studs

Written by robert ferguson
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How to Install Drywall With Metal Studs
Drywall is an interior sheathing material. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Drywall is a sheathing material used on the interiors of residential and commercial building projects. Commercial projects require that interior wall framing use metal studs versus the wooden studs used in residential applications. Hanging drywall on metal studs requires special fasteners capable of penetrating and gripping the metal studs. Other than that, the process between commercial and residential drywall installation is the same, with the exception of varying code requirements applicable to the area.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Razor knife
  • Fine thread drywall screws
  • Screw gun with applicable Phillips head tip

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  1. 1

    Place a sheet of drywall against the metal studs of a wall so that one end butts tightly into the corner of the adjacent wall and the opposite end falls on the centre of a stud. Drywall manufacturer's produce drywall in lengths of between 8 and 12 feet to correspond with common stud spacing. If the drywall fails to fall on the centre of a stud, score it with a razor knife at the applicable measurement that allows it to, and snap off the excess.

  2. 2

    Lift the drywall into place until it butts into the ceiling. Do the top row first when installing drywall onto a particular wall and continue until the row is completed.

  3. 3

    Insert a screw into the screw gun and drive the screw through the drywall and into the metal stud. Randomly drive a couple of screws to hold the drywall in place. Common screw placement is about 1/4 inch from the edges and about 8 inches on centre. Screw placement code varies from region to region so check with your local building department for proper screw placement. Continue this method until the top row is complete.

  4. 4

    Hang the first piece of the bottom row. Stagger the butt joints between the top and bottom rows to allow for easier drywall finishing. Position the drywall so that the top row's butt joint lands in the middle of the sheet. Adjust the sheet left or right so that one end falls on the stud centre. If the other end fails to land on the centre of a stud, score the drywall at the applicable location and snap off the excess.

  5. 5

    Center a drywall jack under the bottom edge of the sheet. Lift the sheet by pressing on the jack with your foot until it fits tightly against the bottom edge of the top row.

  6. 6

    Fasten the drywall to the metal studs in the same fashion as in step 3 by using the screw gun and applicable screws. Continue installing the drywall until the bottom row is complete.

Tips and warnings

  • Recruit an assistant when hanging drywall; it makes the job much easier.
  • Avoid damaging any plumbing pipes or electrical wires when driving screws.

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