Buy Drywall: The Perfect Fit for the Job

A home with drywall.

When you buy drywall, be sure to get the type that will be the right fit for the job at hand.


The standard piece of drywall comes in a four-foot (48 inch) width. However, if you are doing a horizontal installation on a wall taller than the standard 8 feet, the wider drywall comes in handy.

Length of Sheets

The standard piece of drywall is 8 feet long. However, for larger walls, it does come in 4x12 sheets. Drywall sheets that are 4 by 16 are also available. They are used in larger buildings, usually commercial construction.

Longer sheets can provide fewer seams on long walls.


Drywall thickness varies and it is important to buy drywall that is the right fit for the job. The standard width throughout most areas in a home or business is ½”. Thinner 3/8” or ¼” drywall is used for special applications such as covering existing walls.

Drywall of 5/8” is used as a firewall between home and garage, on ceilings to better prevent sagging, especially where there are 24” joists, and in rooms that require soundproofing.

Specialty Types

Water-resistant drywall is colored green and creatively called “green board.” Although it is better than regular drywall for water resistance, some builders find it inadequate for showers and tubs, and choose to use cement drywall.

For applications that require special fire protection, builders use double layers of drywall or buy type x or type c drywall that is specially treated for fire resistance.