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January 24, 2011

Advances in drywall technology: paperless drywall

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Information — Tags: , No Comments

Drywall is an increasingly popular home improvement and construction option. It was originally used to create partitions in homes, but with technological advances and product improvement drywall as it stands today is quite suited for construction purposes as well. In fact, it was the slew of natural disasters between 2003 and 2007 that really focused attention on using drywall as a construction component in housing. Drywall is cheap and easy to install, and because of this lesser financial input and manpower required it is made available to greater number of consumers.

Drywall is made from gypsum covered in paper. Gypsum is a low density rock, resembling something between plaster and asbestos (because of this using drywall in your home I making it safer, because drywall is so fire resistant). This slate of gypsum is then covered in a thick heavy duty paper, acting as a base for the absorption of your chosen finish (plaster, paint, varnish, wallpaper etc). Depending on which finish you choose, you could further add to the drywalls inherent fire and water resistance. Some drywalls are even completely waterproof, which means that they can be used in wet environments like kitchens and bathrooms. You could even build yourself a sauna or spa room using waterproof drywall.

An excellent example of waterproof drywall is the paperless variety. The tag paperless may make it sound like its a plain sheet of gypsum, but in fact its covered with fibreglass instead of paper. This variety is therefore obviously quite tough and easy to clean, and is really suited for wet environments. Another advantage that this paperless type of drywall holds is the fact that it wont mould as easily as regular drywall. Moulding is not exactly a common affliction of drywalls, but with fibreglass covered gypsum this risk is reduced even more.

The difference between regular and paperless drywall is nearly negligible, to the naked eye in any case. In daylight you can see no difference, although the texture of the fibreglass variety can be seen with night time lighting. Other than this the only difference is the feeling of the texture itself. Paperless drywall can still be finished in any medium and with any texture, just like regular drywall. This means you can still paint or decorate the paperless drywall in any way you might want to, or even coat it with a layer of sealant or varnish to make it even more impervious to moisture.

The dangers of drywalls

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Information — Tags: , No Comments

Many people are finding drywalls an increasingly attractive walling option. This is due to the fact that drywall is cheaper than traditional walling. Its also easy to install (you could do this yourself with only the most basic of DIY knowledge), and because you dont need plaster and other expensive building materials you also save bunches on construction costs. Furthermore, drywalls are also energy efficient in the sense that they insulate temperature. This means that drywalls ensure its cooler in summer and warmer in winter, because less heat is gained or lost.

Attractive as the drywall option may be, there are some dangers involved as well. Its not exactly a matter of being too good to be true, but there are certain precautions and safety measures youll have to take when you install drywall in your home. One of the major problems of drywalls is that many of them are made from material that could turn vitriolic. This means that drywalls, depending on the type and material, could actually be filling your home with corrosive and potentially toxic fumes.

This is especially true of drywalls containing sulphur. Some types of drywall contain hydrogen sulphide and/or sulphur dioxide, and neither are good for the respiratory health of organic organisms. Convenient, cheap and easy to install as they may be, drywalls are just not worth it if they are actually releasing harmful chemicals into your home. No one knows this better than the Americans, who have been using drywalls in their homes for years. Thats why it should come as no surprise than an American company has come up with one of the first solutions for decontaminating toxic drywalls.

The NanoScale Corporation is currently marketing a air filtration cartridge (which was developed by one of the companys co-founders) known as OdorKlenz. Funny phonetic spelling aside, this cartridge holds a lot of promise for making homes with dangerous drywalls safe again. The cartridge uses a material called FAST-ACT, which is powder based and comprised mainly of magnesium, titanium and oxygen and works by filtering the air in homes. The particular reaction that the sulphur fumes have on the metal oxides essentially negates the hazardous corrosive elements in the air. This technology was originally developed for use in disaster areas, and as such it should be pretty effective in a medium sized home.

If you have drywalls and have been experiencing feelings of weakness, nausea and overall weakness it might just turn out that you have installed these above-mentioned dangerous drywalls.

December 31, 2010

Texture drywall: Spray it

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Styles — Tags: , No Comments

Drywall is quite common these days. And with good reason. Drywall is a much cheaper alternative to traditional plaster walling, and it is also easy to install. So easy in fact, that you could do it yourself. Easy at it might be to install drywall yourself; it still requires some care and attention if you want to do a professional job. One thing that will help you do the best possible job is to have patience. Sometimes it can feel like you arent doing anything, because youre constantly waiting for the previous layer of plaster to dry. This is a very important part of the drywall installation process, one that will reward you with a smooth and stylishly finished drywall.

Once the drywall is finished as far as plaster is concerned, it is time to prepare the wall for finishing or painting. Make sure the wall is clean and dry, and then apply some PVA or similar primer. Now youll have to decide what kind of texture or finish youre looking for. There are a variety of options available to you. You could finish your drywall with wallpaper, a glaze finish or paint.

If you decide to paint the drywall youll need to decide whether youre going to be applying it with a roller, spray, brush, trowel or any other applier you can think of. Each one will deliver a different kind of finish. Spray is most usually used in situations where precision and neatness are required, while brushes and trowels can be used some interesting effects. Other drywall textures even combine these mediums, so spray and trowel (Spanish Drag) can be combined, or spray and brush (“slap brush”) can be combined.

Whichever finish or texture you decide on, just remember the patience mentioned earlier. All paint finishes require multiple layers, and each one has to dry properly before the next can be applied (except in special cases like the “orange peel” effect which has to be done while still wet). Your drywall will look like it was installed and finished by a professional if you pay attention to detail and take your time to get it right. And it will be pretty rewarding to look at your masterly installed and coated drywall and know you did it yourself.

December 30, 2010

How to install drywall

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Information — Tags: , No Comments

Many people are discovering how convenient, cheap and easy to install drywall is. Its cost effective because it costs less than traditional plaster walling, and because you can install drywall yourself you also save on construction expenses. If you are considering drywalls as a walling option and are interested in the DIY-aspect, the following guidelines should help you to install drywall in your home in no time.

As with any DIY job, the more people are involved the faster and easier it is. Depending on your skill level, it can take you between 4 and 10 hours to drywall an entire room of average size. When you take into account that this includes installing drywall ceilings its actually surprisingly quick. Also, the time needed to install drywall can be divided by every person helping.

Before you begin to actually install drywalls, youll first have to take certain safety procedures and practical considerations into account. Firstly you need to ensure that the room youll be working in is both well lit and well ventilated. This is to ensure that you can properly see what youre doing, and to ensure you dont work in a stuff room full of dust. Its also a good idea to cover the floor and furniture youre working in with dust sheets. You should ensure that you have the basic tools, this includes: an electric screwdriver or nail gun, an industrial carpet knife, drywall adhesive or putty, sandpaper and a pencil. Before you install drywalls, always lay the panels flat as to avoid chipping the edges or bending or breaking the entire drywall panel. Also remember to never force drywall into its allotted spot – this will firstly damage the drywall panels and secondly compromise the structural integrity of your drywalls.

When you install drywall in a room, make sure to always drywall the ceiling first. Its not compulsory to drywall the ceiling, but if you want to you should start your installation project here. When installing drywall remember to always start from the centre of the area and move outwards. Place your drywall first and mark where you will be screwing or nailing the panels to. Fix the panels and then cover any holes or irregularities with drywall putty; you can sandpaper this even when it has properly dried. All that is left to do is to paint or add the finish of your choice and youre done – following these simple instructions its easy to install drywall.

December 29, 2010

The hazards of drywall

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Information — Tags: , No Comments

Drywall is becoming increasingly common in homes, due to its low cost and ease of installation. Although there are several advantages to drywall, including water and fire resistance, temperature circulation and the little effort it requires to maintain and patch drywall. The cons of drywall arent necessarily that well-known though.

One danger that (some) drywall is known to have is toxicity. Some drywalls – not all of them – may contain sulphur compounds which can be toxic in the long term. The problem is that drywalls are made out of a material known as gypsum. Gypsum is a type of stone with a consistency similar to that of cement or plaster. This means that as it wears away it “sheds” dust. If the gypsum your drywall is made of contains sulphides, you are essentially inhaling toxic dust.

Another, recently discovered, danger that drywalls may hold is found in the drywall adhesive (a putty-like substance often referred to as mud) used to fix and finish off drywalls. This adhesive is applied between sheets of drywall, and when dry the excess amounts that squeezed out between joints are smoothed away by sanding. However, the dust created by this sanding has been found to be potentially hazardous. Other than its rather poisonous effect, the drywall dust can also cause nose and eye irritation, as well as sinusitis and breathing problems. If you have any respiratory problems like asthma for example, your drywalls could potentially be a very really danger.

Given, most of these dangerous dusts are mainly present when you install drywalls. The sawing, drilling, nailing et cetera can cause quite a lot of dust – thats why its best to wear protective gear like a mask and safety goggles when installing drywalls yourself. To compensate for the possible dust that might be released by everyday wear and tear you might want to consider a wet finish like varnish or paint. This means that the drywall is essentially sealed, which means that no harmful dust is released.

Its true that drywalls do have certain relative dangers attached to them. But its also true that these problems arent insurmountable, but can be safely negotiated with the proper precautions, forethought and common sense. At the end of the day drywall is a cheap and effective material for both indoor and outdoor home improvement (and even construction).

November 30, 2010

Drywalls: How theyre made

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Information — Tags: , No Comments

Drywall is fast becoming a big competitor to traditional plaster walls. Theyre cheaper, more flexible, are easier to install and require less manpower. Drywall is basically a material called gypsum (which resembles a very tough cardboard or type of asbestos) which is covered in a thick layer of special paper. Although drywall is becoming increasingly popular, few consumers and potential customers know much about this material; knowing a bit more about drywalls can help to explain their advantageous properties.

Technically gypsum is actually a type of rock. Scientifically it consists of water and calcium sulfate. This means that almost a quarter of gypsums “genetic” make-up is water. This means that drywalls, being made of gypsum, are very fire resistant. This makes them quite an attractive option as far as beefing up the fire safety level in your home is concerned. When drywalls are exposed to fire, they will slow the spread thereof because the flames first have to evaporate all the water present in the gypsum. Even after all the water has been consumed by heat, the gypsum itself still wont set alight. This means that the fire is slowed even more. And if youre trapped in a burning building, the one thing you want most of is time to find an escape route…

As stated earlier, drywalls are basically gypsum boards coated in varieties of special papers. These papers convey a series of properties to the drywall, depending on which type (or types) is used. Because of its paper base, it is very accepting of paints, varnishes, plaster and other available finishes. Other qualities of paper variants include water resistance and improved fire resistance. When this drywall paper is coated in a special type of lamination it is actually completely waterproof. This means that drywalls can even be used in “wet” areas like kitchens and bathrooms.

Drywalls are also extremely flexible in the sense of a limitless variety of shapes and curving, due to the fact that gypsum can also be moulded. Gypsum can be made pliable by crushing the material into a powder. While crushing the material should also be heated in order to evaporate the water molecules present. Water is then added to the powder, creating a kind of plaster or putty. This gypsum plaster or putty can then be made into any form or shape, and then be allowed to dry out again. When properly dried or set, the gypsum is as hard and solid as it was before pulping.

How to apply texture drywall: the Spanish drag technique

by MRblogger — Categories: Drywall Styles — Tags: , No Comments

Drywall is a very versatile walling option. Drywall is made of gypsum, and gypsum can be ground down to a powder and mixed with water to form a plaster. This gypsum plaster can then be moulded into pretty much any form your specific needs might require. When the plaster dries, it regains its old solid properties. The variety if finishes and texture drywall you can apply is also very exciting. There are options ranging from normal plaster finish, to varnish, wallpaper and paint (which holds a mass of possibilities itself).

Depending on what finish you apply, and how you apply it, there are almost no limitations to what you can do creatively. Painting finishes, for example, can be applied by using brush, rollers, trowels or even airbrush. Each type of applier will result in a different type of finish, and you could even experiment with combining different types of applicators. Regardless of what type of finish you choose for your drywall, remember to prepare the wall before beginning application. The wall should be clean and dry before you begin to texture drywall.

A rather stylish texture drywall finish is the Spanish Drag. This effect is a combination of applicator mediums, as you use both a trowel and air compressed spray. This texture sprayer is used to set the first layer of texture on the drywall. Make sure that the finish has dried properly before applying the next layer, which will be with the trowel. It should be mentioned that the textured paint is made by combining the paint of your choice with drywall adhesive (also called mud). If you dont want to take forever, you should use as big a trowel as you can find. Now simply apply the textured paint in a big swath – it should have something of a rocky road effect.

Another finish that is closely related the Spanish Drag texture drywall, is the so called “orange peel” effect. This texture is also achieved in a similar fashion. First a layer of texture is applied with the compressed spray. Now textured paint is applied, but this time also by being sprayed. Applying multiple layers, while the previous ones are still wet, results in a texture drywall known as orange peel. With a bit of creativity you can create almost any texture drywall effect you could think of.

November 29, 2010

Varieties of texture drywall

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Drywall is a very dynamic medium, and you can create almost any texture of drywall with the right tools and technique (and some creativity). Drywall is also very versatile, and you can either do an entire room with texture drywall, or merely patch any holes or damaged areas. The first you need to do when you texture drywall is to prepare the surface, much as youd do when painting a traditional plaster wall.

The very first step is to ensure that the wall is clean. Once youve cleaned the walls and allowed them to dry properly, you can apply a layer of drywall mud (which is what the adhesive or putty used to join and fox drywall is called). Many DIY professionals like to thin their mud for the first and last layer, seeing as how this gives you a finer, smoother finish. Youre welcome to do this when you texture drywall, but take care not to make the mud too thin – the mud should ideally have the consistency of cream. The ideal way of applying the drywall mud is by using a roller. There are also a variety of rollers, which enable you to create a variety of texture drywall finishes.

An important thing to remember when priming your drywall is to allow every layer sufficient time to dry. Never apply a new coat of mud if the previous one isnt dry yet. After youre done applying the new layer(s) of drywall mud, and let it dry overnight, you can apply a layer of PVA if youre planning on painting your texture drywall in progress. If you are painting your drywall, there are a number of effects you can achieve, depending on whether your use brushes or rollers and which types of these you use. Remember that you should also allow each layer of paint dry before applying the next.

Texture drywall isnt limited to paint, plaster or varnish though. There are a number of interesting options for texture drywall out there, including sand and stone effects. If you want a sandy effect on your texture drywall, you merely add some sand to your paint mixture – its as easy as that. Make sure to not add too much sand, as this will make application quite difficult. The safest option, regardless of what type of texture drywall you have in mind, is to test your finish on a piece of leftover drywall first.

October 31, 2010

Some facts about drywalls

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The traditional form of walling, namely bricks and / or plaster, has been around for years. It recent times, this well established form of walling (one could perhaps say that plaster had a bit of a monopoly) is being increasingly replaced with drywall, especially regarding indoor construction and home improvement.

Drywall is essentially a sheet of gypsum covered in a thick heavyweight paper, or sometimes even a coating of fiber glass for increased resilience and water resistance. Gypsum is a material resembling low-density stone. The advantages of gypsum is that its lighter than traditional plaster walls – which also means that its easier to install – is fire and water resistant, is cheaper and can be covered in any finish from paint to varnish. In fact, drywall is so easy to install that you can do it yourself without any special tools, training or major DIY experience.

Because drywalls are made from gypsum, its also very flexible regarding shaping and moulding. Gypsum can be ground into powder; this is done by crushing and heating. The heating is necessary to vaporise the water molecules in the material, seeing as how 20% of gypsums chemical and mineral make-up is hydrogen. When the gypsum is ground into a powder it is mixed with water to form a sort of paste or putty, this is also the way that plaster of Paris is made. In paste / plaster form the gypsum can be manipulated into any specific shape or curve you require, and once it dries again it regains its solid, sturdy attributes.

Drywalls are easy to install, even more so if youve got help. Drywalls can be fixed to almost any surface with relative ease. They can be either be fixed straight to the surface in question, or to a steel frame if you need greater stability form your drywalls. Drywalls are installed with either screws (preferably using an electric screwdriver), nails (a nail gun will be great at this job) or special fasteners that come with the frame youre using. Other than screws or nails youll also need mud (this is what drywall adhesive or putty is often called) for joining adjacent sheets of drywall. This is applied much like a putty and the excess is sanded off once dry.

It should be pretty clear that drywalls are attractive because of their low cost; and when you see how easy it is to install (yourself) its really something to think about.

October 30, 2010

How to finish and apply texture drywall techniques

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A lot has been said about the advantages of drywall. Some of these positive properties include the fact that drywall is cheaper than traditional plaster walls, they are more eco-friendly and can save you a lot of money with temperature retention, they are so easy to install that you can do it yourself and theyre fire and water resistant. You can also texture drywall in a variety of ways, and it isnt as difficult as many people believe to texture drywall yourself. Even the negative side of drywalls is rather common knowledge. This includes problems with toxicity, as it has been found that certain types of drywall contain unhealthy levels of sulphur and sulphide compounds which can have a variety of detrimental effects on health.

There are many how-to guides out there as well which outline the exact procedure of how to install drywall yourself. One aspect of installation that is often neglected is the application of a finish (like paint, plaster or varnish) to drywall, or of creating a texture drywall. The most important thing to keep in mind if you want to texture is to make sure that the drywall itself, especially the joints between panels, are properly smoothed. This is done by sanding off dried out adhesive with sandpaper or an electrical sander. You can create a variety of effects when mixing the drywall adhesive with other finishes. You can, for example, create a stone effect by mixing paint and a sand-like substance – with some research and experimentation you can create some pretty interesting texture drywall.

You can also create varieties of texture drywall depending on the finish you use. The method you use for applying your chosen finish can also affect the texture youll eventually end up with. When applying paint or varnish – both of which will result in a different type of texture drywall – you can further diversify the texture you end up with by either applying the finish with a roller, a brush, a sponge etc. Try to be creative, but test the result on a scrap piece of drywall before you just starting applying it to your newly installed drywall. Its easy to texture drywall if youre creative and smart about it.

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