Drywall is favoured construction material for finishing a basement. The installation process is relatively straightforward and quick, reducing the labour fees for your basement remodelling project. In addition, you have plenty of flexibility with the designs since drywall is easy to cut.
If you want to finish your basement walls with drywall, we prepared the ultimate guide for you. Once you go through our helpful tips, you will understand every aspect of using drywall for basement finishing.
The Challenges Of A Basement
Basement finishing is the process of turning the basement into a livable space that feels like an extension of your home. Working with this space comes with lots of changes due to its specifications. The nature of the basement requires proper use of construction materials to avoid the most common challenges. The space is located partially underground, meaning that humidity levels can be high. Consequently, basements are prone to mould. To avoid this problem, you should use moisture-resistant and mould-resistant materials.
Any issues related to humidity need to be adhered to before you start installing the walls. Your contractor will test whether humidity results from condensation due to a lack of insulation or if there is a bigger problem. If water is seeping through the exterior walls, this issue needs to be tackled before installing the walls.
Drywalling For Basements
The bare concrete walls don’t fit the idea of creating a cozy space that feels like the rest of the home. Therefore, homeowners use drywalling to make the basement feel connected to the upstairs living space.
Using drywall to finish your basement comes with so many advantages. It is an affordable construction material to keep the project estimates within your budget.
If you have specific requirements regarding the design, keep in mind that drywall is pretty flexible. The designers can easily create aesthetic features such as arches, rounded corners, or odd shapes. In addition, you can customize the drywalling according to your liking with paint and wallpaper. If any holes or scuffs appear, you can quickly fill them with drywall mud.
However, there is one thing to keep in mind. The standard drywall is porous and susceptible to humidity. Each panel consists of two paperboards and gypsum in the middle, which might not stand moisture well. Your basement finishing contractor will choose drywalling specially designed for use in basements. These panels feature a fibreglass net or other material that doesn’t hold the moisture or promote mildew growth. Furthermore, the local building codes might determine the use of humidity-proof materials.
Drywall comes in different thicknesses. Your local building codes might not have strict regulations on drywall thickness in your remodelling project. Therefore, the choice is left to the construction needs. For basement walls, you can stick with the standard half-inch drywall thickness. You can go with ⅝ inch thick drywall panels to cover the ceiling.
DRIcore Smart Walls
The DRIcore smart wall is one of the available options for finishing your basement, specifically designed for this purpose. These wall panels are easy to install, so that you will pay less in labour hours. And let’s not forget that they combine a few functionalities in one to cut down the installation time and save you money. These innovative panels feature framing, insulation, humidity resistance, drywall, and electrical wiring in one product.
Green Board is a drywalling mainly fabricated for humid areas. The difference between regular drywall and green board is the outer layer. To be moisture resistant, the material is layered with foam that doesn’t hold moisture and prevents mould growth. Although green board resists moisture, it isn’t classified as waterproof. Therefore green board isn’t recommended for showers or saunas. But you can still use it for a basement that doesn’t have a wet area.
Even though the green board offers moisture protection, the purple drywall is resistant to humidity, mould, and mildew. In addition, the surface is also prone to scratches and scuffs. It tends to cost 30% more than the standard drywalling, but it will offer additional protection.
Sound control is a must since you don’t want to hear the footsteps and noise from the ground floor. Soundproofing drywall provides solid noise control when applied to the ceiling. In addition, it is an easy solution that eliminates the use of other types of sound insulation.
The Process Of Installing Drywall
When you start with bare concrete walls, there are a few steps before proceeding with the drywall. First, you need to install proper insulation. Install the insulation foam on the walls while sealing the seams between the individual pieces. The next step is framing the walls, depending on your desired layout.
After building the walls, next comes installing the drywall. First, the contractor will plan the access hoels for any valves or electrical outlets. They will measure and cut the holes into the drywall and make sure every panel ends with a stud. Next, the contractors will secure the drywall onto the stud. After securing the panels onto the studs, there will be visible screws and seams, which will be filled with caulk for a seamless finish.
Painting is the final step in the process. However, the drywall needs to be adequately cleaned of the debris and dust and prepped first. A Coat of primer will ensure the paint stays in pristine condition. If you plan on installing wallpaper, keep in mind that it won’t adhere well to bare drywall. It is better to prime the surface before applying wallpaper for the best results.
Installing drywall in the basement isn’t a straightforward task. From choosing the right type for basement finishing to the process of the installation itself, there are so many things to take care of. If you are looking for a professional contractor to handle your basement remodelling process with the utmost attention to detail, Level Up will gladly take care of it. Make sure to contact us now, and we will be happy to assist you!