Drywall 101: Choosing the Right Drywall for Your Project

Every renovation project or build relies heavily on the details—what materials you use, your budget, specs—the list goes on. That’s why it’s always important to know exactly what you need for your project and why the products you choose will work best for you.

Although drywall might seem like a simple material to understand, there are a few types of drywall to consider: traditional drywall, fire resistant drywall, and mold and moisture resistant drywall. Like any other material, different types of drywall were made for different types of environments and uses, so it’s important to know what the drywall you’re using is made of and why it is the best choice for your project.

What is Drywall Made Of?

Drywall is made from calcium sulfate dihydrate, also known as gypsum. According to the Gypsum Association, gypsum is an inert compound that contains 21% by weight chemically combined with water, which allows for buildings to be fire resistant. When the gypsum starts to heat up, it releases water which helps prevent ignition or crumbling until the water has steamed away.

There are many different types of drywall to choose for your project—from fire-resistant to soundproof, knowing which drywall to use for your project is very important.

Traditional Drywall

Traditional drywall is mostly used in residential construction at a 1/2-inch thickness and a standard size of 4 by 8-foot panels. By using traditional drywall, you one will be able to finish standard walls with a minimal number of joints. If needed, traditional drywall is also available in thicker and larger sizes.

Fire-Resistant Drywall

There are two main types of fire-resistant drywall: Type X and Type C. Both types were created for different purposes have certain pros and cons depending on their use, so it’s good to understand how Type C and Type X differ.

Type X

Type X is when the manufacturer adds glass fiber to the gypsum slurry and rolls it into a 5/8-inch minimum. Thanks to the fibers, this allows for the board to last up to an hour in a fire. Many local buildings require Type X drywall around furnaces, boiler rooms, and attached garages.

Type C

Type C drywall was invented by one of our vendors, USG. Just like Type X, Type C also has the glass fiber mixture, but with more glass and a form of mineral vermiculite. Vermiculite expands under high heat at the same rate that gypsum shrinks, which helps the board maintain integrity. Type C last longer than Type X in high heat situations.

Mold & Moisture Resistant Drywall

Mold and moisture resistant drywall is mostly used in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and basements. These rooms tend to have more moisture than other places in a building, so it’s always wise to use materials that can handle a lot of moisture.


A popular type of mold and moisture resistant drywall is Greenboard. The green backing of this type of drywall has a petroleum-based coating that helps resist water and mold growth—although it is water resistant, it is not waterproof. The color green helps identify this type of drywall as well as helps the drywall installer see where to apply the joint compound.

Find Out What Drywall Works Best for You at Freedom Materials

Choosing the right drywall is an important part of your project process, so make sure you fully understand the differences between each type of drywall! If you still have questions about what type of drywall is best for you or you, contact our team today.

At Freedom Materials, our qualified team of drywall experts is ready to help you with whatever questions you might have about your drywall project or any of the drywall products we carry. We are ready to make your project a success!