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How America Began Trusting Drywall
How America Began Trusting Drywall
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How America Began Trusting Drywall

Drywall has been America’s interior wall cladding material of choice for decades. It’s called drywall because, unlike plaster, installing it doesn’t require water. In addition to being easy and quick to install, it also offers excellent aesthetic benefits and superior fire resistance.

How America Began Trusting Drywall

To help you understand why drywall is so popular today, Universal Roofing and Exteriors, the region’s authority in drywall painting, shares a bit of its history:

Quick Evolution

Before drywall was sold in the form that everyone’s familiar with, it was initially offered in small, fireproof tiles. It only took a few years for the original manufacturer, U.S. Gypsum Company (UGC), to maximize its performance. Every panel of drywall consists of one layer of compressed gypsum sandwiched between two sheets of Manila paper. The raw gypsum is mixed with paper pulp, starch, an emulsifier and many other additives to create a gypsum paste. Then, the gypsum paste is spread onto one layer of heavy paper before the other is laid on top.

The material may not need water for installation, gypsum contains a lot of it in crystalline form. In the event of fire, the evaporation of water crystals keeps the drywall cool, allowing it to protect the structure behind it.

Image Crisis

Interestingly, drywall wasn’t considered an attractive building material during its early years. Before World War II, plaster was more popular despite being more of a nuisance to install. Originally called Sackett Board – an allusion to UGC’s subsidiary – the company rebranded it to Sheetrock to improve its reputation. However, the effort wasn’t successful.

It was only when the war broke out that builders started paying attention to drywall. From originally being considered a cheap cladding option, drywall soon became viewed as the “patriotic” choice since it allowed homeowners to spend more time and money supporting America’s war effort. Since then, drywall has been the norm.

Post-WWII Building Boom

The affinity of builders and homeowners for drywall continued after the war was over because it was seen as a cost-effective and less labor-intensive option. In most cases, drywall repair and installation only required a fraction of the time needed for plaster projects.

Harness the benefits of drywall with Universal Roofing and Exteriors, your trusted drywall contractor. From installation to maintenance, you can rely on us to help you make the most of your drywall sheets. Call us at (317) 257-0779 to get your project started, and get an estimate in Northside of Indianapolis, Zionsville or Fishers, IN.


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There’s no better combination than experience, quality products, and a strong work ethic when it comes to choosing a central Indiana roofing company. That’s why we are confident you’ll be satisfied with our work—so confident that we guarantee your satisfaction before you pay a dime. That’s right­—no payment unless you’re satisfied. Get a free estimate from us by filling out our request form or calling us at (317) 257-0779 . We can’t wait to give your home the attention and care it deserves.