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Drywall Ceiling vs. Tongue and Groove Wood

Ceilings are made using 4 by 8 foot or longer drywall sheets that are screwed to joists of the floor above. Hanging ceiling drywall is not easy for most homeowners but the trick is to get a finish that is flat and seamless. This is not easy to pull off especially for the beginners. The perfect alternative to drywall is tongue-and-groove paneling. It provides a beautiful natural wood ceiling which is easier to install than drywall. All in all, before contacting a drywall supplier Toronto for this enticing alternative you need to understand the pros and cons of both drywall ceiling and tongue-and-groove wood.

Drywall installation

The installation of drywall ceiling is difficult and you will need at least one pair of extra hands or a drywall lift to get the work done. The reason for this is because the sheets are quite heavy. A standard 4 by 8 foot, ½ inch thick sheet weighs approximately 52 pounds. What is more, the drywall sheets are unwieldy more so when it comes to installing them on the ceiling.

Fastening the sheets to the joists is not the end of the project. You will need to tap and mud the joints. The joints need at least 3 finishing coats in order to blend with the other panel surfaces. This is an area beginners struggle in the most. It is always a good idea to leave the installation work of a drywall ceiling to the professionals.

Benefits of drywall ceiling

  • Easy to achieve virtually flat and smooth surface
  • Easy to paint than the tongue-and-groove paneling
  • It is a traditional option and so will not draw too much attention when selling your house


  • Not possible for one DIY installer. The sheets are quite heavy thus not easy even for two DIY installers to manage the sheets overhead.
  • Upside-down mudding is difficult for beginners.
  • High threshold of perfection because light can catch the joints at angles that reveal imperfections.

Tongue-and-groove paneling installation

If you don’t have anybody to help with the installation, tongue-and-groove paneling is the option you should consider. You can complete the installation on your own. To install the panels, you first need to cut the panels into pieces that fit perfectly with neighboring pieces. You then nail the planks to the framing using finish nails.

The hardest part in the installation of tongue-and-groove paneling is getting the panels to straighten out. You have to ensure the rows are in straight lines and parallel to the walls. If you plan on finishing the planks with any finish material, you need to apply that finish before you start installing the planks. All things considered, it is easier and less messy to install tongue-and-groove panels than it is to install drywall.

Benefits of tongue-and-groove ceiling

  • Lightweight thus easy to lift
  • Attractive thanks to its rustic appearance
  • Conforms perfectly to the less-than-perfect surfaces


  • Hard to paint
  • Not sound-resistant like drywall
  • Takes longer to cover the ceiling because you will be using smaller sheets. Finishing is, however, faster.

As you contact your drywall supplier Toronto, you have to keep these pros and cons in mind before making your choice. On the whole, even with tongue-and-groove paneling, it is always a wise idea to leave the installation work to the experts.