Once I started working in the commercial setting I picked up a habit of looking at drop ceilings in a different perspective! For instance drop ceilings were now proving a much larger scale of necessity as apposed to residential housing! The main difference to me, you might be wondering, is this; commercial drop ceilings provide a dust barrier and because commercial structures are designed differently you will typically always locate all utilities are there, while in residential typically used because not enough space to put a hard sheet rock ceiling and or trying to hide frame work or other disasters (not in all cases)!
So okay what effect has this played on me well for starters everywhere I go now I constantly look at how a ceiling is installed and or not installed properly and how dirty/ broken the ceiling tiles are! Nothing says yummy at a restaurant like a moldy broken ceiling tile!
So that’s why I felt today I would share a couple of pics and simple suggestions to help anyone out who doesn’t want to get ripped off by a local non-carpenter worker! (Want to clear something up while I’m on a rant! A real carpenter is someone who takes pride in their work and is enthusiastic about the trade!) I am a carpenter!
First off their are hundred of types of ceiling tiles so that decision is up to you if you want to change them all out or if you just want to replace the damaged ones.
Look what I found today! Normally this occurs from leaking pipes, rain getting in somewhere or from air conditioners not being properly wrapped! So if you know that there was a toilet problem upstairs you should probably wear a dust mask and gloves!
Here are all the tools you will need! A pencil, straight edge, tape measure, utility knife, and a ladder. And if you want some more awesome tools like I always do you can buy a few since you fixed the ceiling yourself and didn’t have to pay triple to have someone else do it!
Open up the ceiling carefully because it’s possible luggage may have shifted during takeoff! Well okay seriously though do take your time as you never know what could be up there! I’ve seen metal pipes, old tools, mice droppings, dirty underwear and many more, but because I follow my own advice I have never had any of those things fall on me!
Take this time to inspect where the leak is coming from! If it’s still wet let the area dryout before replacing with new tiles! From the above photo you can see the concrete is damp and from further investigating I discovered that the bathroom floor tiles above is causing the problem! Okay next step!
Place your starting point of your tape (also known as the tang) all the way to the back of the track and stretch your tape to the first outside edge of the opposite side! Now normally if it’s a straight wall you will probably be okay only measuring length and width! However, in this case the wall is angled so I measured from both corners to get my widths and both corners to get my lengths! I don’t really remember the original lengths but was something like 9-1/4″ wide and 8-3/4 wide” by a length of 22-1/2″!
Now that we have our overall dimensions for our ceiling tiles time to make our cuts! One way is using the old tile as a template, but if the tile is too damaged you will have to make your width and length marks and then cutout using your straight edge! If your comfortable using a tape measure you can use the tang to make your line or marks (most professionals will do this way because it’s so much quicker and easier once you get the hang of it!
Maybe this should have been above the cutting portion but I just wanted to for warn you if you ceiling tile has a pattern make sure your match it before you cut or otherwise it will not match the rest and stick out like a sore thumb!
Put your tiles in and your done! Yeah right no matter what never just that easy if you stuff making it difficult for your tile to go in try and place one edge in first and on the opposite side push on the track that will normally allow your tile to get enough room to drop in! Now your done except for clean-up😩!
Why is all this important, well your house is just like a car they require maintenance! As you can see from the above photos this has been an ongoing problem in the past and has caused the wood door to start splitting and caused the base cove to fall off as well as staining the floor tiles! Water and fire are both equally dangerous to any structure so best way to prevent them is to stop them before they spread!
Hope this was helpful to you all and as always feel free to ask questions or post feedback if you have any other suggestions!