How to Hang Drywall on Metal Studs

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Things You'll Need

  • Drywall sheets

  • 1-inch self-tapping drywall screws (fine thread)

  • Electric screwdriver

  • Razor knife

  • Lumber pencil

  • Chalk line

  • Tape measure

  • Drywall joint tape

  • Drywall joint compound

  • 6-inch drywall tape knife

Drywall (also referred to as gypsum board or sheetrock) is an interior wall sheathing material used in most types of construction in both residential and commercial projects. Metal studs are an alternative to traditional wood studs for wall construction, and while their use is mandatory in most commercial construction, they are not commonly used for residential construction. The process of hanging drywall on metal studs is very similar to hanging drywall on wood studs but requires specialized drywall screws. Installing drywall on a metal stud wall is a generally straightforward task that can be successfully completed by just about anyone with basic drywall experience and tools.


Drywall Fastening

Step 1

Stand a sheet of drywall against the metal studs in a corner on either side of the stud wall; choose one end (left or right) of the wall to begin hanging drywall sheets. Make sure the side of the drywall sheet is against the adjacent wall and the opposite edge is running upward along the center of a metal stud; studs are specifically installed with spacing 16 or 24 inches on-center so that drywall sheets can be easily installed. Cut the top edge of the drywall sheet to fit, using the razor knife if necessary; score the finished side (white side) of the drywall sheet and snap free to cut the sheet.


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Step 2

Drive drywall screws into the drywall sheets, using the electric screwdriver. The screws should be installed about 1/4 inch from the side edges of the drywall sheet, at about 8 inches on-center.

Step 3

Measure and mark the stud location (this will be either 16 or 24 inches from either side of the drywall sheet) on the top and bottom edges of the drywall sheet, using the tape measure and lumber pencil.


Step 4

Snap a chalk line, connecting the two marks made in step 3. This will provide a reference for the center of the stud that is behind the drywall sheet.

Step 5

Drive drywall screws along the reference line made in step 4, at about 8 inches on-center.


Step 6

Repeat steps 1 through 5 on the remaining drywall sheets, butting the drywall sheets side to side while working your way to the other end of the wall. Trim the final drywall sheet to fit, using the razor knife as necessary.

Joint Compound Application

Step 1

Apply the drywall joint tape along all drywall sheet joints, trimming the tape to fit using the razor knife as necessary. The drywall joint tape should be centered over the joints.


Step 2

Apply about 1/6-inch layer (or just enough to completely cover the joint tape) of the drywall joint compound over the drywall joint tape using the 6-inch drywall tape knife.

Step 3

Apply drywall joint compound to all drywall screws, using the 6-inch drywall tape knife. The screws should be completely covered by the joint compound.


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