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Installing a drop ceiling?


WorldBuilder's Avatar
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03-14-04, 03:56 PM   #1  
Installing a drop ceiling?

Hello everyone.

I am in the process of buying my first home. We are getting an FHA loan, and before they will let us close, the appraiser came to us with a "must fix" list we have to complete before we close. I can handle all of it except one thing that I'm a little weary of. In one of the bathrooms, the ceiling is unfinished and all messed up. There is a light in there, but it also has a mess of electrical wires snaking in and out of it. I have no idea yet what those wires are. Anyway, I have to "repair" the ceiling as one of the appraiser's conditions, and I am thinking that the easiest and fastest way (I'm in a time crunch) is to put up a quick drop ceiling.

Now, the question is this. I have never installed a drop ceiling before! How do I do it? What do I buy, and how do I install it? It's a small bathroom. Say I go to Home Depot. What am I asking for: tools, supplies, etc? I hope this doesn't sound too stupid, I'm a construction newbie.

Thanks!

Chris

 
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03-14-04, 04:05 PM   #2  
Before you race off to Home Depot, ask the appraiser exactly what his concerns are. I suspect that he isn't interested in the appearance of the ceiling, but those dangling wires are the point of concern.

If it's a wiring problem, the drop ceiling isn't going to buy you anything.

 
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03-14-04, 05:33 PM   #3  
I am definitely going to ask her tomorrow when I talk to her (for the first time). In the meantime, I am pretty sure that the drop ceiling will solve the problem, so any ideas? Thanks!

Chris

 
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03-14-04, 06:08 PM   #4  
What is on the ceiling now??

 
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03-14-04, 07:11 PM   #5  
Well, basically, it's just some unfinished wooden boards, all kinda strewn together. Basically, it looks like a mess and was an unfinished project (that seems to be far from done). Then there's the light and a few electrical wires coming in and out of the light.

Chris

 
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03-14-04, 09:57 PM   #6  
How about a photo of this mess of wiring & boards strewn together. Take a look at the announcement at the top of the topic list for the how-to.

 
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03-15-04, 07:02 AM   #7  
Well, it's not my house yet, and I won't be able to get in there to fix the ceiling until Saturday the 20th. I could photograph it then, but that won't matter because at that point I'll be fixing it!

I'll try looking at the announcement.

Chris

[edit] Oh, the announcement only says how to post a pic. I already know how to do that... Me = UNIX Network/Systems Administrator with several websites!

I just want to know how to install a drop ceiling... Can you guys point me in the right direction, please? Thanks! [/edit]

 
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03-15-04, 12:45 PM   #8  
Dave_D1945,

I did speak to the appraiser today. A drop ceiling IS ok. Suggestions, guys? What do I buy? What questions do I ask? What do I need to know? Thanks!

Chris

 
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03-15-04, 02:57 PM   #9  
If it were me I would get that electrical in order and hang a drywall ceiling. But if you are set on a drop then look into aluminum cross members( they wont rust) and moisture resistant tiles.

 
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03-15-04, 03:19 PM   #10  
I'm only looking for something temporary, probably for a year or less. I will eventually put in a permamnent, wood ceiling, but for now, your suggestion sounds good.

So, I'm asking for "aluminum cross members"? If I go to Home Depot and tell them what I'm doing, this will be jargon they know? Moisture resistant tiles. Yes, makes sense.

How do I install all this? Do I get these "aluminum cross members" cut to specific lengths I need for the ceiling and screw them in? How does all this attach?

Thanks!

Chris

 
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03-29-04, 07:58 AM   #11  
pw1972
There is a good interactive tutorial on this site for doing drop ceilings. I pretty much watched that and proceeded to do 3 rooms 10x10, 30x15 and another 10x10.

A trial by error things I learned that might be helpful.

- The perimiter seems to be the most important piece, make sure that's very level and secured well.

- Putting the tiles up as you go gives the framework a lot of stability and makes life a lot easier.

- Make sure you account for how much room lighting, heating ducts or anything else that might go up there, requires.

- Make sure the "snips" you use to cut with are sharp, your hands will appreciate this!

- Be careful when cutting and placing tiles, that fiberglass seems to fall everywhere. Eyewear is a good thing to have when doing this.

Probably a lot of other things some of the pro's here can tell you, but overall I found the interactive tutorial very helpful. The nice thing about drop celings compared to a lot of other home improvement jobs, is there is a bit of room for error, just try not to ruin too many tiles, those things can be expensive.

 
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03-29-04, 09:13 AM   #12  
Thanks for all your help, guys. I got it done for the appraiser, and it was fine. Basically, since the bathroom is extremely small, there was no way of putting in the aluminum cross-members with the large tiles. What I ended up doing was simply screwing in some small wooden pieces to the ceiling, attaching a large piece of plywood (which I jigsawed to fit), and stapling tiles I bought at HD to the plywood. It looks fine, was cheap, and will suffice until I figure out what I want to do with the bathroom after I take possession of the place at the end of this month. I'll certainly post back if I have any other questions (and I'm sure I will!).

Chris

 
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