+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default drywall unsquare rooms

    This is my 1st rehab experience, oh the 100s of things I've learned, like - what was I thinking. Can anyone give me some tips on hanging drywall in rooms that aren't square. This is an old house, it had plaster and slats, has been added onto twice, one add on being the entire 2nd floor. We tore it ALL out, fixed joists, floors, plumbing, electric, ducts, insulation, windows, now we are to drywall. NOTHING has been normal or easy here. I know people who know this trade well will have little bits of info and tips that could be of great help. We got 6 sheets up today, got approx. 400 to go, we are frustrated and discouraged.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    The short answer is you just do it.

    The long answer is, you just do it.

    You can only work with what you've got, if that means custom cutting every sheet of drywall, then that is what you have to do. You may be able to add blocking along vertical seams to help align things that are not plumb, just depends on what you're working with.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,358

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    Drywall the ceilings first then the walls.

    Add blocking to make sheets fit.

    Hire a professional crew and marvel at how easy they make it look.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,356

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    Before hanging any drywall, before installing a single new piece of framing lumber, you would be wise to make the floor as level as possible. You might find that many walls magically become square, level, and plumb. Once the first floor is leveled, you might be able to do some leveling and shimming of the second floor, too.

    Many old houses were originally built square, but on inadequate footings. Over time, those footings settle into the soil, leaving the house unsquare and unlevel. Some houses have inadequate support; you may need to add beams and posts in the crawl space. Remodeling without first leveling the house will only make things worse: now if you attempt to level it out the old stuff may turn out square and the new stuff won't be. Leveling after remodeling is much more difficult because sheet goods attached to unsquare walls will prevent the walls from being resquared.

    Hang the sheetrock on the ceilings, first. Do ALL the ceilings first. Then for the walls, work your way from the point furthest away from the sheetrock stack toward the stack. That way you can carry sheet goods through open stud bays and not have to work them around awkward corners and doorways.

    Install ceiling pieces lengthwise across (perpendicular to) the joists rather than along the joists; this will reduce the amount of trimming you have to do. Stagger the end joints.

    Same way with the walls, install the sheets horizontally rather than vertically. If the wall height is over 8 feet, butt the bottom sheet against the floor and the top sheet against the ceiling, and put your filler strip in the middle. If it's less than 8 feet, put the upper sheet on first, then trim the bottom sheet putting the cut edge against the floor. Stagger the end joints (like a brick wall). The bulk of your joints will now be at a comfortable working height.

    If you don't already have one, rent or buy an electric cutout tool to make the openings for electrical boxes. (Search YouTube for 'drywall cutout tool' to learn how to use one.)

    When trimming sheetrock, don't worry about making a tight fit at the joints. You can leave up to a 1/4" gap without causing a problem, and doing so might make it easier to install. Don't start mudding and taping until you're done hanging; focus on one thing at a time.
    Last edited by Fencepost; 10-12-2012 at 04:02 PM.
    The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,081

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    All good answers above.

    Even new houses are out of square, out of plumb or level. That means that you need to be creative and willing to customize.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    Thank you Fencepost, lots of info, too busy now to type, we are elbow into project. Any mudding advice?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,081

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    Joint compound has to be applied one layer at a time, let completely dry then sand, and repeat as necessary. Thin layers are better than thick layer, but they take longer.

    Patience and steady hand are the keys to a nice job.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    Quote Originally Posted by dj1 View Post
    Joint compound has to be applied one layer at a time, let completely dry then sand, and repeat as necessary. Thin layers are better than thick layer, but they take longer.

    Patience and steady hand are the keys to a nice job.
    In addition to this, ONLY leave behind what you want left on the wall. It is far easier (and cleaner ) to trowel off wet compound than it is to go back and sand off excess ridges, bumps and globs.

    Don't be afraid to gob on the mud along major joints, the key is to trowel it down to not only the right thickness/height, but to clean up any excess smudges that occur along the way. Always work with a clean knife. Gob on the mud, clean the knife, then trowel it down, cleaning the knife between each stroke. To clean the knife means to wipe it off on the edge of the pan. If you've got a good pan you can get nearly all the excess off no problem, if you've got a crappy pan, then you've more than tripled the amount of work in your future. Do yourself a favor and buy a good stainless steel pan with good quality ****blat knives. Wash the pan and knives after each use (and during when necessary to remove dried chunks ) and dry them off to prevent rust. The stainless pan isn't a problem, but the knives are generally just chromed steel and will rust at any left over mud or water that remains on them.

    As you are working your mud and joints, don't be afraid to clean the knife frequently, especially if you get clumps or debris that leaves gouge trails. When you have this problem, sc**** the debris off on the outside end of the pan so that you do not pollute the good mud in the pan.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,358

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    If using pre-mixed mud;

    1- Use it straight from the bucket on the first layer
    2- Stir the bucket before using
    3- As the layers build, add some water to the mix. The wall will suck the water out of the mud as you work it.
    4- Dust the walls between coats
    5- If you apply thinner and thinner successive coats, you can eliminate most of the sanding.
    6- Buy one of those square, yellow, closed cell sponges used by tile installers to do your 'wet' sanding. This will eliminate all the dust. It takes a somewhat damp sponge and a medium touch. You'll be spreading the mud around, not removing the excess. Be careful not to scrub the paper too much as you can erode it. An ordinary kitchen sponge will not work. This will also not work with 'hot mud' as that has to be mechanically sanded.

    You don't have to get all the mudding done in one day. Do what you can each day. Over the days there will be less and less to do.
    Last edited by HoustonRemodeler; 10-20-2012 at 11:31 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,356

    Default Re: drywall unsquare rooms

    If you're going to spray texture on the walls, prime the walls first. The texture will go on more evenly. Then prime again over the texture.

    Before applying the top coat of paint, run a drywall knife along the wall to scr@pe off any goobers that might've blown onto the wall while the previous layers were still wet. If you're rolling or brushing, it's usually not a problem, but if you're using a sprayer it can blow crud up off the floor and onto the wall.
    The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •