Installing your own ceiling, whether it is a new wood-look ceiling or a more traditional panel, can be a daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be! All Armstrong ceiling products are considered to be DIY-friendly. Of course, there are different levels of DIYers. We’re here to help you understand which kind of ceiling project you can tackle yourself, and which will require help! Read on for tips about easy, intermediate, and advanced DIY ceiling installation projects.
The easiest ceiling projects require you to be familiar with simple tools like a hammer, tape measure, and saw. The ceiling products that fall into the “easy” category include installation materials that make the job easier as well. Three ceiling product categories that fit in the easy ceiling installation category are:
These square tiles come in a variety of smooth, textured, and patterned styles. They will give your ceiling a look similar to a drop ceiling, but without the loss of head room!
These wood-look ceiling planks, known as COUNTRY CLASSIC Planks, go up just as easily as the 12” x 12” ceiling tiles, while producing the look of real wood on the ceiling.
Both of these ceiling types are simple to install directly to a smooth ceiling surface with an adhesive, or with EASY UP Tracks and Clips, which make installation a breeze! The EASY UP system is a super easy way to cover up a textured or popcorn ceiling without losing the headroom like a drop ceiling system or without having to scrape it!
A third easy project makes use of any standard existing 15/16" drop ceiling grid that you might have in your home. If you have a drop ceiling but don’t like the look of the panels, you can simply remove the panels and cover the grid with WOODHAVEN planks using EASY UP Clips. Once the clips are added to the grid, you can slide the planks onto it. Voila! A radical transformation in as little as a weekend.
Intermediate projects might require a little more time in the planning and measuring phases than the easier projects. Some of the tools required may be more out of the ordinary, too. Here are some examples of intermediate ceiling projects:
Install ceiling tiles or panels with our easy-to-use QUICKHANG Installation Kits. The kits come with all the parts you need to install a drop ceiling quickly. You can achieve a variety of looks, from the more traditional white/textured drop ceiling to beautiful METALLAIRE ceiling panels with coordinating METALLAIRE grid kits.
QUICKHANG Installation Kits come with everything you need to install 64 sq. ft. of drop ceiling panels. Kits include easier-to-handle 6’ main beams, standard cross tees and wall molding, and QUICKHANG grid hooks and brackets. The hooks and brackets are a great time-saver that provide a fast way to install and level a ceiling, making it the perfect DIY ceiling job for someone with above-average DIY abilities.
Get more information about the ceiling types you can install using the QUICKHANG kits:
A slightly more advanced DIY project involves installing WOODHAVEN planks with the EASYUP System. The EASYUP track and clip system (the same system used for the easy ceiling tile installations above) installs surface mount ceiling tiles or planks directly to joists or an existing ceiling, maximizing ceiling height in a room. This is the best solution for covering a damaged, plaster, or popcorn ceiling without the need for sanding and scraping!
Note: For an easier WOODHAVEN installation project, you can use the clips and screws that come in the box. This method is ideal for smooth ceiling surfaces and attaching the planks directly to joists in new construction.
Advanced ceiling projects are for experienced DIYers. They require better technical DIY skills, more time planning and measuring, and more tools, like metal shears. Here are a few examples of advanced DIY ceiling projects:
Drop ceilings (2’ x 2’ or 2’ x 4’ panels) can be installed without the QUICKHANG Installation Kits we discussed in the easier projects. For this type of installation you may have purchased the grid materials separately, and will need to position and twist the grid hanger wires manually. It will be important that the wires are all cut and twisted to the same level so that the ceiling grid hangs evenly. This requires more planning and skilled execution over the QUICKHANG Installation Kits, which come with all the parts you need. It's also more difficult to adjust hanger wires for grid leveling if you aren't used to the process.
For this type of ceiling installation, you’ll need heavy duty gloves to handle the METALLAIRE panels, because they can be sharp. You’ll also need metal shears to cut the border tiles. This type of ceiling needs to be planned carefully due to the decorative nature of the border tiles and panels. Where the panels meet in the corners can be tricky, but with the proper planning, it is totally doable by avid home project enthusiasts.
You will also want to consider planning for filler panels around the border of your space as well as finishing with coordinating METALLAIRE cornices.
Other examples of advanced ceiling installation projects include installations where you have decided to have a drywall border around the edges of your ceiling panels (as recommended with some coffered ceiling projects).
If you’re considering one of these projects and aren’t sure if it’s right for you, here are some reasons you might want to hire a pro to help:
You don’t have time to do the planning required for a successful project
You’re not fully confident in your DIY ceiling skills
When local building codes are involved and you don’t have experience with that
You have an unusually shaped ceiling, like a tray, cathedral, or shed ceiling