alternative garage interior wall covering


I'm building a garage with some living space above it. I'd like to insulate and cover the walls in the garage area as well. But I'd rather use something besides wallboard since it is so easily damaged. (See the funny but true earlier posting defintion of a table saw as a device for shooting lumber into the wall.) Are there any good alternatives beside 1/4" paneling? That won't break the bank.
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*Usually the drywall is required in a garage for fire resistance. When there is living space above the requirements are more stringent. You could increase the thickness of the wallboard for durability or install any number of surfaces on top of the drywall. Plywood, OSB or perforated masonite (Pegboard) are sometimes used.
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Yes, I knew there was something about fire resistance involved. I was hoping that wallboard on just the garage ceiling would satisfy that requirement. Do you have to have wallboard on the garage walls as well for fire resistance?
Harder to hit the ceiling using the saw lumber shooting technique. I actually have a hole in our garage wall at home from trying to rip a grove in a piece of lumber with a radial arm saw, yukyuk. That piece of wood was on the saw one moment and sticking out of the wall the next. I swear it was invisible between the two places, probably traveled to the wall in some other dimension.
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The fire-resistive requirement only kicks in as a separation between the garage and a living space, so the walls don't need to be rated. Doesn't necessarily make sense to me, but that's what it is.
R
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And that basically just means 5/8" on the ceiling, right?
So some sort of cheap plywood, perhaps beaded, is probably the most economical alternative to wallboard for garage walls it seems?
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5/8" Firecode, yes.

Define economical. Does that include your labor? You could go with T-1-11 and paint it or not, cover 1/2" drywall with 1/8" paneling or FRP panels (no painting and brighten up the room a lot, though it's more $), etc., etc.
I do question your thinking about not using wallboard due to stuff flying around your shop. If that happens more than on a very rare occasion, you're doing something wrong. You should be more worried about something going through your chest/face than through some $6/ board drywall.
R
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I don't really have lots of stuff flying around. But in the course of 18 years in our current house that has a garage with wallboard there are lots of spots that need repair. One big one from the piece of wood getting away from me in the saw. A mucked up corner where I pushed the boat into it a bit hard. A spot behind the boat where I forgot to lower the prop before pushing the boat back. Stainless steel props go right into wallboard btw, they barely notice it's there. Lots of general dings and scrapes. Except for the board projectile thing all of my other mishaps would have been barely noticable had the wall been plywood. Even the board projectile probably would not have penetrated a 1/2 piece of ply.
And for what it's worth when I'm using a tool that has a chance of throwing something I do work from the side. I retired the radial arm saw via craigs list and got a table saw and compound miter saw.
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And that basically just means 5/8" on the ceiling, right?
*In NJ it is 1 1/4" ceiling for a living space over a garage. 5/8" on the walls. A call to your building department will resolve that question.
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"jamesgangnc" wrote "John Grabowski" wrote:

James, the problem is none of us know where you are, so most 'code information' you have so far, is questionable. Even with your location, we may not have anyone here who's had to check that so knows your specifics. You'll note John above said *usually* and that's dead on. His advice for example doesnt match requirements where I am but probably matches much of the USA for the ceiling portion with above living space. They may not specifically say 'drywall' but that may be the only product in reasonably affordable cost that meets the specs.
Usually you can call your county or city office and get a pretty easy answer for free. Sometimes they give you an email address and ask you to email it and they get back with you. Other times, you find they have some web site with a 'common question FAQ' and they tell you where it is (your question would be apt to be in there).
There are several levels of codes to weed through. Here's my understanding of them if you live in the USA (not a given, cant tell)
Federal codes. These generally apply mostly to public buildings. State codes: These tend to also deal alot with public buildings but have a good bit on private dwellings as well County codes: Not all have these it seems. All the ones i've seen dealt with private housing City codes: generally only applicable is you live inside the city lines. Mix and match set of private and public.
Because you are asking a specific code question and we don't know where you reside, *none* of us can give you a definative answer.
I can tell you a plywood ceiling is legal where *I* am and that's inside the living areas. I'm even allowed to insulate exterior attached garage walls then cover that with open holed peg board (insane but true as they havent written rules against it yet, just against the side that adjoins the house).
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It's not quite so mixed up as that. Most states adopt a model code, such as the UBC or the IRC, and make some relatively minor modifications. http://www.iccsafe.org/government/adoption.html
Your point about local codes being more restrictive could be true, and it would pay to investigate, but I would bet dollars to donuts that the IRC is the one in effect. R
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Your town may not have adopted any codes but I'll bet your insurance company requires 5/8 Type X Firecode Sheetrock on the garage ceiling if there's living space above it and on the wall between the house and attached garage....If it were me I'ld do it for peace of mind....To cheap not to...IMHO...Wood ceilings in your house is legal...Your not storing a hot car full of gas amoung other gas filled toys and tools , paint thinner , oil , ect. in there Some places require 5/8 Type X on kitchen ceilings if there is living space above it , however.........
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jamesgangnc wrote:

Tileboard (the hardboard covered on one side with plastic, several solid colors available) is cheap. Bead board maybe?
--

dadiOH
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jg-
Depends on what level of performance & look you'd be satisfied with......
I would suggest 1/2 or 7/16 osb over the studs and a "finish" of 1/2" drywall (walls) and 5/8 drywall alone on the ceiling.
If your garage is 25' x 25' you're looking at less than $200 worth of extra sheet goods (osb). If you're DIY'ing, the layer of osb will make the installation of the drywall even easier.
How tall are the walls? Perimeter stem wall?
Unless oyu're in earhquake country or a high wind area, I'd suggest the osb be installed horizontal (unblocked) to increase "over the studs" bending strength and reduce time & cost. Drywall can go either way (your perference) but place the sheets to avoid "joints over joints". With staggered joints the drywall will "block" the osb & vice versa......stronger wall & less chance of a drywall seam problem.
If oyu want to go "lowest" cost...just osb on the walls but osb paints up kinda messy.
cheers Bob
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Relative bought used home.It has garage. About 18 by 21 feet. Plaster board walls already showing some slight damage. He has added a four foot wall of OSB around the garage to protect lower down and is mounting shelves to wall studs above in certain areas. Garage ceiling (no living space just a low attic above) is also plaster board; not sure of thickness but would have met fire code when built about 17 years ago.
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Like I said...it depends on how much money or effort you want to expend.
Drywall is (imo) a crappy material but its cheap & easy to repair. Even a beat up garage interior can easily be patched, filled, primed & painted and it will too pretty good.
I like structural panels under the drywall, way stronger walls & really easy to install shelving. But "cover" drywall can still be messed up; its a very soft material.
Plywood or especially osb doesn't look all that professional if not covered with gyp, plus plywood alone wont give you the fire protection you need.
cheers Bob
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