Cement or Basement Walls For Sheetrock or Paneling
|TOOLS: Measuring tape, hammer
drill, cordless drill, 5/32 carbide masonry bit, 3/16 3
inch masonry screws , level, shims
MATERIALS: Treated pine 2 x4s for perimeter of
floor, 2x2s for stud framing, 4x8 foam insulation panels,
construction adhesive, electrical wiring as needed.
You can attach sheetrock or paneling to your cement walls
(block or poured), but to do so you must erect a wood frame
to mount on. This is a tiresome job, and involves lots of
drilling, but it can be done. Before you begin, fix any
leaks in your walls or you will have problems with mold and
mildew. The leaks should be fixed from the outside by
digging around the wall and sealing any cracks.
Check with your city building codes to see if you need a
permit. Plan out exactly how much lumber and insulation you
will need to avoid trips to the lumber yard.
1. Run a treated 2x4 end up (so it is 2 deep against the
wall) about Ό inch off the basement floor around the entire
perimeter. This will keep water from seeping up the wall
should you have any unexpected leaks. Check to make sure the
walls are level and square. Use shims to square up any
2. You will have to drill into the cement wall with a pilot
hole first, then nail or screw the 2x4 to the wall. Drill
the pilot hole using a hammer drill with a 5/32 inch carbide
masonry bit. You can rent a hammer drill if you dont have
one. The pilot holes should be about 16 to 20 apart. Note:
They do make special guns to shoot into the cement, but they
require special training.
3. Drill 3 inch masonry screws into the pilot holes on the
2x4 to attach it to the wall.
4. Attach 2x2s to the top of the wall using the same method
as the 2x4 along the floor. These boards may go up against
the ceiling. Frame out any windows.
5. Plan out your 2x2 studs, starting in a corner and placing
them 16 on center. (The middle of one 2x2 to the middle of
the next 2x2 is exactly 16) Check each stud to make sure it
is level and plumb. If the stud is not level, use shims to
level it out. Drill pilot holes and attach the studs with
6. If you plan on any wiring, now is the time to run wire
and install outlets. This step may require an electrician.
7. Your next step is to cut the 4x8 insulation to fit
between the 2x2 studs. Using an S pattern, use construction
adhesive to glue the sections to the walls. TIP: Insulation
panels come in Ό, ½ Ύ, 1, 1 ½, etc. The R value of ½
insulation is R3. Ύ insulation goes up to R4, and 1
insulation is R4 ½ to R5, but the cost rises substantially.
You can decide if the cost of an extra ½ of insulation is
worth the R value to you. The insulation must be flush or
less than flush to the studs, never overlapping them.
8. You are now ready to panel or sheetrock. Remember when
hanging your sheetrock that this is a basement and there may
be moisture. Hang your sheetrock or paneling ½ off the
floor. You may cover the gap with trim.
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