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Types Of Drywall

Traditional drywall is known by different names in different parts of the country and world. Also called Gyprock™, Gib Board™ or gypsum board, these names reflect that the interior, gypsum plaster, is sandwiched between two thick sheets of paper. Plasterboard and wallboard are also commonly used terms as is Sheetrock™.

Drywall can be altered in various ways to produce a rigid product for ceilings, moisture and fire resistant product, an eco–friendly product and a product that can deaden sound. Here is a general description of the types of plasterboard available in the market today.



    • Comes in 1/4", 3/8" used for residential renovations or repairs in single or double layers, or if covering a small-radius curved surface
    • 1/2" used for residential construction in single-layer applications with 16" on center stud construction
    • 5/8" used for residential construction in single-layer applications with 24" on center stud construction; when a 1-hour fire rated wall is needed (Type X)
    • Common is 8' or 10' but boards can be up to 16' long
    • Drywall generally comes in 48" widths (types may vary)
    • Tapered Edge – best when using drywall tape and joint compound
    • Square Edge – best when using a plaster finish

Ceiling Board, Controlled Density Drywall or CD Drywall:

  • Is a more rigid 1/2" drywall used on ceilings to prevent sagging

Moisture Resistant Drywall:

  • Greenboard – So named because of the green paper cover that is treated with a petroleum-based product that makes it resistant to moisture.
  • Blueboard – A blue paper faced board, which forms a strong bond with either a plaster finish or a skim coat creating a surface; both mold and water resistant
  • Cement Board – Very rigid board used in bath/shower and areas with high water contact and as a stable base for ceramic tile – made with cement that is reinforced with fibers
  • Foil Back – Vapor barrier impedes the moisture inside a room from traveling to exterior walls or ceiling spaces
  • Paperless – Gypsum sandwiched between fiberglass is more resistant to moisture and mold, used in areas of higher humidity but not where there is direct water exposure like showers

Fire Resistant Drywall:

  • Type X – a.k.a. Fire-rated drywall: 5/8" thick, has 1-hour fire rating; the gypsum core is reinforced with glass fiber
  • Type C – Fire-code C drywall: 1/2" & 5/8" thick, has a 2 to 4-hour fire rating depending on studs, drywall thickness; more glass fiber is used than in Type X and gypsum core has an additive of a shrinkage-compensating vermiculite.

Eco–Friendly Drywall – Recycled Material:

  • EnviroBoard – Compressed fiber panels using ecologically safe material – usually waste fibers from agriculture or newspaper – results in a solid panel that resembles concrete and is paper-coated
  • EcoRock – Can be made out of up to 20 different recycled industrial byproducts (scrubbed from coal fired electric plants) like slag, kiln dust, fly ash. These byproducts are mixed with fillers and water to bind all into a pourable paste. EcoRock sets without heat (20% less energy used to manufacture) and is impervious to mold and termites

Soundproofing Drywall:

  • Soundboard – Made from lumber waste product, lightweight with STC (sound transmission class) of product alone of 15, special installation is needed
  • Soundproof – 5/8" thick, made by a process called constrained-layer damping–alternating layers of gypsum with materials such as ceramic, metal, plastic polymers, or glue, all of which creates drywall that is stiffer to reduce vibration

Over the decades, drywall has been modified to meet updated building codes and to serve the needs of homeowners better. Definitive Drywall Services can explain the type of drywall best suited for different room environments and help you choose the correct product. We've been in the business of pleasing our customers for over two decades, call us at 206-909-5481 and let us show you why.