What is the difference between drywall and plaster?

When building a home or remodelling, people usually think about the kitchen worktop the extensive square footage or the number of windows in the new space. Much of the time, little thought is given to one of the most integral parts of the home -- the interior walls.

Most people don't think about the walls in their homes unless there's a problem or they move into a studio apartment. Yet, interior walls provide privacy and separation. They can also act as sound barriers insulators and even offer additional fire resistance.


The most common form of plaster for interior walls is gypsum plaster. Plaster walls are generally created through a three-coat process. To begin, lath must be secured to the framing. Historically, lath has been made of timber strips, but more recently metal or plasterboard have come into use. The lathes gives the gooey plaster something to hold onto.

After the lathes is in place, the plaster compound must be mixed. The compound plastering mortar usually comes dry and must be mixed with water. While this step may sound fairly easy, a certain amount of skill and experience is needed to get the right consistency.Then, the plaster can finally be applied to the wall. The first coat of plaster is applied, scratched and left to dry. It is followed by the second over coat .or brown coat, and then the wall is finished off with a final layer.


For basic gypsum drywall the calcined gypsum is mixed with water and occasionally additives to create the core material [source: Gypsum Association]. The viscous material is then squeezed, or flattened, between two different layers of paper and dried. One side of the paper is the face, which is strong and smooth, while the other side, or back, has a rougher texture.

installing drywall is a fairly quick process compared to that of plastering. The boards are cut to fit the shape of the walls. They're then secured to the rough framing of the house. After the boards are in place, corner bead is attached to the corners to give them a straight edge. The walls are then taped with either paper or fiberglass-mesh tape at the joints, corners and places where the boards have been fastened to the wall. Then, the typical three layers of joint compound are added. After each layer, the wall is sanded to give a smoother surface. Once the third layer had dried, the wall is ready to be painted.


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Editor : www.trowelwallets.com