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How to Decide What Type of Drywall to Use for Your Home and Garage

When deciding on a drywall finish to use in your home or garage, it is important to consider the location of the drywall and the use of the surface. For example, there is a significant difference between drywall finishes that are typically used in garages when compared to other rooms inside a house.

The reason for the difference in drywall appearance is due to the fact that there are six different levels of drywall finishes, which all serve a different purpose. The drywall used in garages is typically at a lower level than the drywall used in interior rooms in a house. The six different levels range from level zero all the way up to level five.

The first level, level zero, is generally used for temporary projects. Drywall at level zero is hung up onto the ceiling or onto the walls, without any taping or finish applied to it.

Level one drywall is useful for attic spaces, and consists of a layer of joint compound along with paper taping. To elevate the drywall to the next level, level two, a thin additional layer of joint compound is added over the taping. Drywall at level two is slightly more aesthetically pleasing, and typically will involve covering up fastener heads and corner beads. It also involves wiping off any excess mud. This level is often used for garages.

To reach a level three drywall surface, a third layer of joint compound is added over any tape and screws. Careful consideration should be used so that there are no visible ridges or marks on the surface. Level three drywall surfaces are useful for interior walls of the home when the decorating plan involves covering the walls, using material such as wallpaper.

The most common finish for interior walls inside homes is a level four drywall finish. To create a level four drywall finish, it is necessary to use two coats of joint compound over the flat joints, and three coats are needed to cover any fastener heads and accessories. Once these coats have dried, it is necessary to sand the surface. To cover the drywall at level four, it is recommended to use a flat or satin finish to achieve the most attractive look. Prior to painting over the drywall, primer should be used first in order to get the best result.

Finally, the top level in drywall finish is level five. In order to create a level five finish the steps to create a level four finish must be followed first. After a level four drywall finish has been completed, a thin skim coat of joint compound must be added to the surface. This coat will conceal any imperfections that may have been visible at lower levels. Just like at level four, primer is also needed at level five. A level five drywall finish can be used under any paint finish.

Each drywall level has a different use, depending on the desired aesthetics for a location. In general, level two is recommended as the best option for garages since it requires less work than a higher level finish, and more attractive surfaces are not necessarily in high demand for garages.

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