Easy Steps for Covering a Popcorn Ceiling

Popcorn ceilings are one of those things that you either really like or really dislike. If the latter is true, and you do not want to go through the extremely difficult and messy process of removing the popcorn, you will want to cover it instead. The following instructions will help guide you through the relatively painless process.

First you will need to gather your tools. You need the following:

Tape measure

Safety Glasses

Stud Finder


Drywall sheets to cover the entire length and width of the ceiling

Utility Knife and supply of blades

Drywall screws

Drill and drill bits


Mesh Tape

Joint Compound

Putty Knife

Measure the ceiling and purchase the amount of drywall you will need for the job. If the ceiling is in the bathroom or any room that is exposed to moisture be sure to purchase the appropriate green board type of drywall.

Use your straightedge and utility knife for cutting the drywall and be sure to replace the blades frequently to ensure sharp and accurate cuts. Drywall is easy to cut; simply score your line where you want the cut to go and snap it off in a clean and quick movement. Make your cuts according to your ceiling measurements.

Take your stud finder to locate where you will need to drill in your drywall pieces. Mark each area with a pencil just a bit away from the stud (using a pencil drawn arrow works very well to show location).

Lift the drywall up, one sheet at a time and screw it into the ceiling studs. Drywall is very heavy, so if you have someone or several someones to help you, all the better. Be sure to wear your safety glasses when drilling in the drywall screws to prevent small particles from falling into your eyes.

Apply the mesh tape carefully along each drywall seam. If you are applying crown molding where the wall meets the ceiling you will not need to apply tape there, if not, to ensure strength, tape these seams as well.

Use your putty knife to apply the joint compound. Apply it liberally and dig it right down into the seams. Scrape area smooth with the putty knife and allow to dry thoroughly. The ceiling is now ready to be finished with primer and paint, and you no longer have a popcorn ceiling to look at.

A special note of interest here, is that while these instructions are brief and seem relatively easy to perform, drywall work is messy work. Make sure you completely remove anything from the room that is mobile and cover those things, including the floor, that are not. Also make sure to work in a well ventilated area; open those windows. You also want to give your work sufficient time to dry between tasks. Allow forty-eight to seventy-two hours for the drywall joint compound to dry before proceeding to the next task. One last word of advice, drywall is heavy, so be sure you are not lax on the amount of drywall screws or the drywall joint compound that you use. With the proper caution and care the finished ceiling will last for years to come.

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