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Drywalling basement ceiling

1276 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  ChiMike
Hi Everyone,

I am in the process of finishing my basement. I am flip flopping between drop ceiling and drywall. The only reason I don't love the drywall idea is because of the loss of access.

I have a couple questions for adding access in the drywall. My initial thought was to add paintable access panels every couple feet down the midline of the ceiling where all electrical would be run. Would this be a good compromise between the two?

Second part of this is, all water and drainage that runs in the finished areas is run along the exterior walls. Is there any type of panel I could put in place that would allow more access to the drainage/water that is run there? I have a couple specific areas in mind where drainage from upstairs bathrooms comes into the basement.

Thanks for any help/ideas!
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The advantage of a drywall ceiling in a basement is that the room in the basement looks more like a room that is not in a basement. If you drywall the ceiling you can bet that there will be a water leak above and you will have to fix the damage. If you install grid work and ceiling tiles it is easy to replace the ceiling tile if needed and you have access to your mechanicals. So you need to decide if the occasional repair is worth the drywall look. I go drywall with a few access panels, if you feel you need a lot of access panels it will affect the appearance and then you may want to do the suspended ceiling. Good Luck
Thanks for the reply. Any suggestions on access panels? Just something from Home Depot or is there something a little better?

The main living area will be about 24 feet long at it's widest point. Maybe 3-4 access panels in that center line just in case?

I really don't have anything run in the ceiling in the main living area besides electrical for basement lighting. It's more my paranoia of thinking that I want to add something after having the drywall up.

Thanks again for the help!
I only put access panels in mine where needed ( water shut offs, gas shut offs, electrical boxes, etc) if your think you want panels so you can access potential areas where you might have issues, you might as well just put up the suspended ceiling. I've got no issues with repairing drywall as needed.

*edit, I also think the home depot ones should work just fine. there are different sizes, just get the ones that make the most sense for what you need to do.
Thanks again for the help!
My question would be, what would you add up there? The only things youd really need to get at would be things you wouldn't really add unless you were to do some MAJOR changing to your house overall... It really comes down to what you want I wouldn't be too worried about the loss of access, also your celings will be 4" higher with drywall. Remember if your gonna do it yourself 1) grab a buddy or two, 2) use 1/2 in drywall 3) I like to bead some liquid nails on the joists above as extra insurance that over time it wont sag
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