Drywall and Texture

     Drywall and texturing are two very important aspects of completing the construction of a home. After the framing, electric, plumbing, and insulation are accomplished properly, hanging sheets of drywall is necessary. This must be done in such a way that, when taped, textured, and painted, the walls and ceiling will retain a finished, professional effect.

     Good materials and proper execution is a must when hanging drywall. Proper sized screws and width of drywall is necessary, as well as making sure that the drywall is cut out for electrical outlets, plumbing, and vents just right so that they are accessible. Also, it is important not to leave too big a gap around the fixtures so that covers will cover the area.

      Then, a talented tape and mudder is required. A thin layer of mud is spread on the seams between the drywall sheets, one are at a time. Then, the drywall tape is applied. The drywall knife is then scraped across the surface of the tape, pressing in to the wall so that the excess mud underneath the tap is expelled and scraped off the wall during each swipe. 

     Many drywall workers employ a material during this stage called "hot mud" that sets up much quicker than normal drywall mud. Instead of waiting overnight or at least for hours to apply the next coat of mud, they only have to wait 20 or 30 minutes. They can then spread a good coat from several inches on either side of the tape to blend the tape into the wall. This coat many times involves hot mud as well.

     Then, some drywall workers do another coat of hot mud, but others do a final coat with regular drywall mud. This depends on the tendency of the individual drywaller. Some even use regular drywall mud for all coats. 

     Next, any mistakes, missed spots, etc are fixed with a bit of mud. When all of it has dried, it is time to sand as needed. Some drywall workers are so good at their job that very minimal sanding is required. Others leave a bit more work for the sanders.

     Then, after vaccuming and brooming off the walls, it is time for texture. The main way of applying texture is with a hopper. Mud is mixed with water to a certain consistency, depending on the desired effect. It is then poured into the top of the hopper. An air compressor is used with a hose connected to the hopper to propell the mud out of the tip.

     Some think of texturing as a bit of an art form, as it takes developing a feel for the application. Depending on the type of texture, the worker needs to adjust the viscosity of the mud, the size of the tip, and the pressure of air going through the gun. This results in a splattering of mud with much different results.

     For orange peel texture, a thin mixture is required, paired with a small tip and about 60 pounds per square inch of air pressure in the gun. For a large, thick knockdown texture, thicker mud is required, paired with a larger tip and about 30 psi of air pressure at the gun.

      When attempting any type of texture, it is important to always bring a spare piece of drywall of a sheet of wood so that one can tune in their gun and mixture by practicing on it before spraying on the wall. Also, making sure to mask off areas and items that are not supposed to be textured is a very important aspect of texturing professionally.

     Lastly, when shooting knockdown texture, it is important to pay attention to the size of the texture and how long one should let it dry before knocking down the large pieces of texture. This is also an important use of the spare piece of practice drywall.

     Now, that the texture has dried, it is time to paint. But make sure to prime the raw texture and/or drywall before applying paint. Paint with a sheen will not seal up drywall mud. Good luck!