If you’re looking to give your ceiling a three-dimensional look, you may want to opt for our drop-in panels. They are ¾” deep, and each weighs approx. 1.85 lbs. Also, they are pretty easy to install, and as is the case with all ceiling panels, they give you easy access to the area above the ceiling if needed.
Here is what a drop-in panel looks like:
Before we go over the installation process, here’s a list of stuff you’ll need:
(1) Drop tile ceiling hardware, which includes screws, suspension wires and cross tees
(3) Sharp knife
(5) Chalk box or laser
(6) Tin snips
(7) Drill with eye bolt driver
Now the step-by-step guide to installation:
(1) Establish the correct height for the ceiling with a laser level or chalk box. [Tip: Though chalk line is always an option, a laser level will make the job much easier and will save you a whole lot of time. So if you don’t own one, and don’t want to buy one either, renting is always an option.]
(2) Fasten the outer trim pieces to the wall with screws. Make sure the screws are long enough to go through the wall and into the wall studs.
(3) Hang the suspension wires from the ceiling. Depending on what kind of ceiling you have, you can either attach the hanger wires using screws or bolts made for drop ceiling tiles applications, or by wrapping the grid hangers around the joist or other stationary objects. The hanger wires are typically spaced apart by 48 inches through the ceiling. Also, they should hang a foot lower than the ceiling height.
(4) Hang the main runners of the metal grid using the hanger wires to tie the grid in place. The main runners will run from one side of the wall to the other. You’ll need to snap them into the trimming that runs along the wall. The runners will have pre-drilled holes that the grid hangers will slip through and tie. The direction of the main runners should run at right angles to the joist when installed. To make sure that the metal runners are level, use a laser to site the grid, or stretch out a string from wall trim to opposite wall trim.
(5) Install the cross tees between the main runners and secure them into position using the tabs at the ends of the cross tees, which engage in the slots of the runners. The typical ceiling tile will either be 2-by-2-foot or 2-by-4-foot.
(6) Place the ceiling tiles in the grid flanges. Cut the tiles by scoring them with a sharp knife and then snapping them. For radius cuts, use a jigsaw or compass saw to cut the tiles.
A few tips to help along the way:
- Any steel material should be coated with an oil-based product for protection.
- If painting your metal ceiling, use an oil-based primer and paint. The steel can rust if a water-based product is used.
- Clean any unfinished steel with wax and grease cleaner before painting.
- Use care not to scratch pre-painted finishes when nailing up ceiling panels
If you have any tips, or tricks to share with us, please feel free to do so!