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Old 08-13-2014, 10:06 PM   #1
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


The house is raised on pilings, and the underside of the floor joists are covered with two layers of drywall. Insulation is between the joists and drywall. The question is, can drywall be used outdoors? The house will NOT be "closed" in around the pilings....It will be left as-is as seen in the pictures.


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Old 08-13-2014, 11:49 PM   #2
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


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The house is raised on pilings, and the underside of the floor joists are covered with two layers of drywall. Insulation is between the joists and drywall. The question is, can drywall be used outdoors? The house will NOT be "closed" in around the pilings....It will be left as-is as seen in the pictures.

If it is (in fact) everyday garden variety drywall then...good luck!!!

Is this New Jersey?

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Old 08-14-2014, 07:13 AM   #3
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


I would have at least used a product like Densshield, paperless, or any number of moisture resistant drywall.
Then primer and paint with a mildicide in it.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:43 AM   #4
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


Good question. You should check with your local building codes.

It's kind of hard to tell from the pictures, but it looks like it won't be exposed to direct rain. If so that would obviously be a no. But is this basically the same situation as a garage? I'm not really sure. A garage would have the same temperature and humidity factors as this space, I guess. It might work.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:49 AM   #5
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


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If it is (in fact) everyday garden variety drywall then...good luck!!!

Is this New Jersey?

Yes this is new jersey. It is a house on the jersey shore. I am unsure what type of drywall it is, but it doesn't look any different than regular drywall. I do know there are two layers of it.

I am also unsure about the spackle that was used. I don't know much, but I do know that when you wet it, it does loosen and get soft (like with a wet sponge).

Last edited by djchase88; 08-14-2014 at 08:52 AM.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:33 AM   #6
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


When installing drywall, it's called joint compound, not spackle. I would hope in an exterior application like that, they would have used setting compound. From your description, it sounds like they used regular drying compound, which would not have been my choice.

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Old 08-14-2014, 10:48 AM   #7
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


I would think that the elements would eventually get to it by temperature swing and humidity.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:49 AM   #8
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


Yeah I know polecat, but doesn't that make you wonder about all the garages finished in drywall?
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Old 08-14-2014, 03:10 PM   #9
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


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Yeah I know polecat, but doesn't that make you wonder about all the garages finished in drywall?
I beg to differ! I don't think this is at all like a garage. A garage isn't normally subject to mist and fog and sea-air-drift and blowing rain and morning dew and saltwater spray.

I would say at the very least the entire area should be painted with a high quality epoxy paint/coating and all transitions and connections to dissimilar materials should be heavily caulked.

There are professional painters here (at DIY Chat) that could help with those recommendations.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:00 PM   #10
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


It's done every day here in Fla. in swimming pool enclosures and lanais, fancy name for screened in rooms. Some are left smooth most are knockdown texture. Then just primed and painted. Sometimes there is a problem after a few years and that is just is the tape comes loose. That usually comes back to a poor taping job. This includes homes right on the water.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:11 PM   #11
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


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I beg to differ! I don't think this is at all like a garage. A garage isn't normally subject to mist and fog and sea-air-drift and blowing rain and morning dew and saltwater spray.
I was replying to polecat, and the attributes he mentioned specifically humidity and temperature changes. And with regard to those, he said they would "get to it". In that context, I said basically then how could garages handle those things?

Blowing rain or sea spray is not likely to get on that drywall. However it is more likely to have fog or dew. It's less exterior than siding, and more exterior than a garage.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:17 PM   #12
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


Where I live it is very common in spring and fall for extreme cold temperatures to be quickly followed by warm wet air masses. All cold surfaces become wet with condensation. Metal more so. Drywalled garages that are not painted shed their tape.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:22 PM   #13
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


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Blowing rain or sea spray is not likely to get on that drywall. However it is more likely to have fog or dew. It's less exterior than siding, and more exterior than a garage.
Tell that to the next "Sandy" that comes along.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:31 PM   #14
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


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Where I live it is very common in spring and fall for extreme cold temperatures to be quickly followed by warm wet air masses. All cold surfaces become wet with condensation. Metal more so. Drywalled garages that are not painted shed their tape.
Right, that's why I said it makes you wonder about that. There are a lot of unpainted garages. The one in this post will be painted, certainly. So it will be interesting to see how it holds up.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:38 PM   #15
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Can drywall be exposed to the elements?


Can you put exterior paint on drywall? That should keep it sealed I would think.

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