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Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installer

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What Does it Take to Be a Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installer?

Career Description Apply plasterboard or other wallboard to ceilings or interior walls of buildings. Apply or mount acoustical tiles or blocks, strips, or sheets of shock-absorbing materials to ceilings and walls of buildings to reduce or reflect sound. Materials may be of decorative quality. Includes lathers who fasten wooden, metal, or rockboard lath to walls, ceilings or partitions of buildings to provide support base for plaster, fire-proofing, or acoustical material.

A Day in the Life of a Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer

  • Inspect furrings, mechanical mountings, or masonry surfaces for plumbness and level, using spirit or water levels.
  • Install horizontal and vertical metal or wooden studs to frames so that wallboard can be attached to interior walls.
  • Cut metal or wood framing and trim to size, using cutting tools.
  • Hang dry lines to wall moldings to guide positioning of main runners.
  • Coordinate work with drywall finishers who cover the seams between drywall panels.
  • Apply cement to backs of tiles and press tiles into place, aligning them with layout marks or joints of previously laid tile.

What Every Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer Should Know

Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Time Management: Managing one’s own time and the time of others.

Types of Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer Jobs

  • Sheetrock Applicator
  • Interior Specialist
  • Sheet Rock Hanger
  • Wood Lather
  • Metal Lather

Job Demand for Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 119,500 jobs in the United States for Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installer. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installer. The BLS estimates 10,500 yearly job openings in this field.


The states with the most job growth for Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer are Utah, Colorado, and Oregon. Watch out if you plan on working in Kentucky, Mississippi, or Vermont. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What is the Average Salary of a Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer

The average yearly salary of a Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer ranges between $27,490 and $83,010.


Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers who work in Hawaii, Minnesota, or Washington, make the highest salaries.

How much do Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $33,680
Alaska $51,560
Arizona $41,830
Arkansas $39,780
California $61,820
Colorado $46,620
Connecticut $54,830
Delaware $42,890
District of Columbia $48,070
Florida $35,240
Georgia $37,570
Hawaii $79,500
Idaho $35,800
Illinois $56,010
Indiana $44,300
Iowa $35,110
Kansas $42,770
Kentucky $41,720
Louisiana $35,520
Maine $43,680
Maryland $45,280
Massachusetts $49,980
Michigan $42,300
Minnesota $58,530
Mississippi $34,960
Missouri $44,430
Montana $41,840
Nebraska $39,240
Nevada $37,930
New Hampshire $47,380
New Jersey $54,200
New Mexico $39,330
New York $49,600
North Carolina $37,060
North Dakota $49,290
Ohio $40,810
Oklahoma $44,130
Oregon $59,230
Pennsylvania $47,690
Rhode Island $40,720
South Carolina $36,940
South Dakota $33,600
Tennessee $40,080
Texas $37,870
Utah $39,530
Vermont $44,920
Virginia $36,190
Washington $59,990
West Virginia $36,700
Wisconsin $46,450
Wyoming $42,030

What Tools do Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Turtle Creek Software Goldenseal
  • Palm OS
  • On Center Quick Bid
  • Job costing software
  • Construction Software Center EasyEst
  • Wilhelm Publishing Threshold
  • DevWave Estimate Works

Becoming a Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installer

Are there Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers education requirements?


How many years of work experience do I need?


Where Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers Are Employed


Below are examples of industries where Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers work:


You May Also Be Interested In…

Career changers with experience as a Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installer sometimes find work in one of the following fields:


Image Credit: Margo Wright via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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