Drop ceiling panels - different options

Old 11-14-01, 08:22 AM
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Drop ceiling panels - different options

I"m looking for a nicer looking dropped ceiling than one typically sees. I've seen all the panels that they have at Home Deport, Menards, etc., but do not like any of them.

Does anyone know of other types of stores or locations where more stylish drop ceiling panels can be purchased?

Old 11-21-01, 07:45 AM
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Kansas City Area
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Just finished my basement project a couple of months ago. I agonized over the ceiling panels, since I too hated the ones at the big home improvement stores.

First start on the internet. Both Armstrong & USG have sites to view all their different panel types. There is a large variety available, but within each class the basics are the same (insulation value, sound dampening, sag, vapor proofing) really only difference (within certain classes) is appearance. Be prepared the price goes up substancially, you are in the designer area / commercial arena. Also the exact same panel will have different names & product #'s between their residential coding (this is the home store name) and the commercial coding ( this is the contractor / supply store name).

From the web sites I found who was a full line provider of their products. If you are in or near a city of any size (I am in Kansas City) you will most probably find a full fledged lumber yard which caters to builders & contractors. As opposed to the national home stores retail focus. The building supply place I found which represented USG, probably had at least 50 different types and small samples of each (5" x 10" pieces), which they let me take home to look at, compare, and get the approval of a higher power (my wife).

Overall I selected 2x2 panels with a beveled edge, and paid around $1.00 sqft. The cheap (home store) panels go as low as $.20 sqft, and the panel both my wife and I liked the most was $1.75 sqft. I saw some as high as $2.50 sqft. Note the builder supply stores talk in sqft, the home stores talk in individual panel prices. One 2x2 panel is 4 sqft. as you can & will see the difference in cost is huge. We simply could not justify the higher priced panels, but they looked good. We settled on the medium priced panel, but it had all the sound & insulating values as the more expensive. Btw, the sound deadening has really been very good, I was pleased in that area. Not so sure it would have been with the cheaper panels.

Happy hunting. Mike

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