How to Cut Notches into Wallboard

installing wallboard, also referred to as drywall or sheetrock, you will often find that you need to cut notches in your wallboard to accommodate protrusions such as wall switches, telephone outlets, etc. With the right tools and instructions you can cut these notches accurately, and without wasting wallboard.

Things you'll need:

  • Measuring tape
  • Straightedge
  • Utility knife
  • Pencil
  • Drywall saw
  • Carpenter's square
  • Carpenter's level

Step 1 – Measure and Mark Your Notches

Measure the location and dimensions of the protrusion you need your notch for. Let's say it is a wall switch. Determine on your wall studs the place where the left edge of your wallboard will be placed, and make a mark. Measure from this mark to the left edge of the wall switch. Then, measure the width and length of the wall switch. Transfer these measurements to the wallboard. Draw a small rectangle on your drywall sheet, using the dimensions you just made of your wall switch.

Step 2 – Cutting Out Your Notch

Place the point of your drywall keyhole saw on the inside edge of the drawn rectangle on your wallboard. Hit the butt end of the saw with your hand, hard enough to drive the saw point through the wallboard. Then saw along each of the inner edges of your drawn, box until you've cut out the box.