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Old 09-06-2011, 01:05 PM   #1
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Drop ceiling vs. Drywall

So many pics that I have seen with finished basements have drywall ceilings aren't they worried about getting access to their pipes?


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Old 09-06-2011, 03:39 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by campertwin View Post
So many pics that I have seen with finished basements have drywall ceilings aren't they worried about getting access to their pipes?
Many years ago, I finished our basement in our new house. I didn't want it to look like a basement so I decided to drywall and stiple the ceilings as was the case in the rest of the house. I did a great job. In a matter of months, I had need for access so I removed the drywall and installed flexible fibreglass 2x4 tiles and florescent fixtures. I was able to get the tiles very close to the joists so I didn't compromise headroom. The lighting was the best part. Now my basement looks like a basement and I'm glad I used ceiling tiles. I've added wiring, gas piping to a clothes dryer and range, done renovations etc over the 20 odd years and it was much easier with tiles.


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Old 09-06-2011, 03:53 PM   #3
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If you like the tiles and plan on not moving then great. If not you better drywall the ceiling.
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Old 09-11-2011, 04:46 PM   #4
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I do this for a living and unless the homeowner just really wants a drop ceiling, I'll frame down where necessary and install drywall. I just don't care for a suspended in a residential application. Just personal opinion. And with the cost of the grid these days, it's as cheap or cheaper to drywall. You can add access panels where needed for gas valves, water shutoffs, sewer cleanouts, etc. are needed. Paintable plastic panels are available at the big box stores in various sizes. I often use return air grilles and no one is the wiser....
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Old 09-22-2011, 12:41 AM   #5
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If you have pipes in there and don't mind a dropped-tile ceiling, in my opinion that's the way to go. Three main reasons: (1) A water leak, especially a pinhole leak, can take several days to show through a drywall ceiling. Then, for example, you see the discoloration and open it up. Well, you're lucky if the leak is right there. The water may have traveled along a joist or pipe, so then you end up tearing out more drywall to find the source. (2) Once you find the source, you could have a real mess on your hands as well as a difficult drywall repair to make, especially if the ceiling is textured and you have to try and match the texture. I've been there and it ain't fun, as drywall repairs can take several days to accomplish. Moving or covering furniture to protect it from sanding dust and mud drips, patching with drywall, applying mud, taping, wait time for drying, more mud, more wait time, sanding, feathering, texturing, painting, dust and other clean-up...it can be a mess, a real pain, and a time consumer to get it right. (3). With a dropped-tile ceiling, access, for any reason, to anything up there anywhere is simple.

Also, a water leak will generally show up sooner through more porous ceiling tiles. Then it's simply a matter of removing the damaged tiles and slipping in new matching ones.

Of course, hiring a professional drywall finisher can eliminate some of the headaches, but it's still a process. That's my two cents' worth from someone who's been through it.
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Old 09-25-2011, 09:30 AM   #6
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I've got a mix of drywall and drop tiles going into mine. The half bath, which has no plumbing/ducting/etc in the floor joists has drywall for the ceiling and the main room has Armstrong drop tiles for easy access to the plumbing/electrical.


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