Drywall vs Sheetrock: A Comprehensive Guide

Drywall vs Sheetrock

Installing drywall is an affordable and convenient alternative to plaster or mortar for wall construction and ceiling paving. Drywall and sheetrock are the most commonly used materials for this because they provide durable support and are highly customizable. But when it comes to drywall vs sheetrock, which is ultimately better?

Material Similarities & Differences

With the popularity of these materials in home remodeling projects, it’s easy to get torn between each one. Of course, each material has its own characteristics.

Drywall is made by sandwiching gypsum between two layers of paper through a pressing process. Sheetrock is another type of drywall produced by the US Gypsum Corporation, with a few extra components that make it sturdier. That’s why most people use drywall and sheetrock interchangeably, even though they’re not the same thing.

Composition

Gypsum, also known as calcium sulfate dihydrate, serves as the core component for crafting drywall. To improve its performance and durability, manufacturers blend in various additives.

Sheetrock includes proprietary chemicals in its formulation, allowing the company to patent the trademark and distinguish its product in the market.

Features

Drywall features standard boards of ¼ inch to ¾ inches. You can also find sheetrock boards with similar thicknesses. 

Drywall and sheetrock are featherlight compared to other construction materials. Both materials are considered dry construction since no water is used in their installation. This characteristic renders them more environmentally friendly than materials like plaster, which require water. Once their lifespan is over, you can easily recycle both board types.

Drywall and sheetrock boards are also highly resistant to temperature. Using either in rooms exposed to sunlight controls the heat, keeping rooms cooler and enhancing energy usage.

Lastly, both sheetrock and drywall are versatile, which enhances their flexibility. This makes it possible to customize the boards to fit each room, such as painting them a different color.

Uses

Drywall and sheetrock are both utilized in wall construction and as ceiling panels. Depending on its properties, drywall can be used in different rooms or commercial buildings.

For example, moisture-resistant drywall is the best choice for bathrooms and kitchens. Normally, this kind of drywall is covered with wax and an extra layer of paper on the backside to prevent moisture penetration.

On the other hand, soundproof drywall is suitable for dampening the sound coming from a room. This makes them ideal for home offices, music rooms, or theaters. Soundproof drywall comes with an extra layer of viscoelastic polymer that gives it soundproofing properties.

There is also a fire-resistant option that is best fitted in rooms where you would keep equipment or appliances that can cause fire.

Similarly, sheetrock options depend on their purposes, ranging from fireproofing to soundproofing and moistureproofing. Some sheetrock panels are also weatherproofed, providing a perfect option for outdoor ceilings.

 

Using drywall and sheetrock for decorative purposes is also gaining popularity, with more focus on walls and ceilings. These resources are suitable for dividing rooms, like in office cubicles. They can be utilized for making shelves and designing ceiling coffers, as well as other methods to enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home.

Pros & Cons of Each Material

In comparing drywall and sheetrock, there is a small variation of advantages and disadvantages associated with each material. Let’s take a glance:

Drywall

Drywall is a widely used building material for interior walls and ceilings. It offers easy installation and maintenance, making it ideal for many construction projects. Here are the main pros and cons of this material.

Pros

  • Easy installation
  • Easy to maintain
  • Eco-friendly
  • Less costly than sheetrock
  • Versatile use and customization
  • Resistant to cracks and waving

Cons

  • Poorer quality than sheetrock
  • Requires professional installation
  • Susceptible to moisture and mold growth 
  • Contains a lot of sulfur, which corrodes metal & has an odor

Sheetrock

Sheetrock is renowned for its high quality and performance. While it’s more expensive than generic drywall, it’s favored for its consistent quality and resilience to outside factors. Here are some reasons why one would choose it or not.

Pros

  • High quality 
  • Versatile in use and customization
  • Easy to install and maintain
  • Doesn’t have sulfur in its composition
  • Resistant to water and weather conditions
  • Thermal and sag-resistant (due to its lightweight)

Cons

  • More expensive than drywall
  • Susceptible to mold growth & water damage
  • Susceptible to warp and discoloration

Common Misconceptions About the Two

A common misconception about drywall and sheetrock is that they’re the same thing. However, this isn’t the case, especially when you consider how they’re both manufactured.

A good example is the sheetrock brand, which is known for its superior quality. But, even though this material is sturdier, it’s not always ideal. Working with a home improvement professional will help you choose the most suitable type that aligns with your home’s needs.

Another myth is that thicker drywall or sheetrock is the better option. However, it is wrong to assume that the thicker the boards, the better the quality or durability. The truth is that different thickness options are available for different requirements and applications. 

For instance, if you want to install drywall for standard walls or ceilings in your home, ½ inch thickness is ideal. If you want to soundproof your home instead, you can choose a thicker option. Again, working with a professional will ensure that you make a choice that serves your specific needs. 

Ultimately, sheetrock and drywall prices differ. Sheetrock is a high-quality brand, so it has a higher price range than regular drywall. Depending on the thickness, you can bag regular drywall for approximately $0.40 to $0.65 per square foot, while sheetrock prices vary from $0.75 to $1.50 per square foot.

Conclusion

In the drywall vs sheetrock battle, both materials make a strong case. Sheetrock stands out as a superior choice due to its higher quality, but it does come with a higher price. Drywall is a bit less reliable, but it’s more affordable. 

Sheetrock installation may also increase the appraisal value of your home, making it more cost-effective in the long run. Whatever material you choose, just make sure to have it installed by professionals so you can enjoy it fully.

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