Best Way to Cut Drywall – Which Tool to use? Here’s the Answer

Almost everyone uses drywall in the construction or improvement of their homes, offices, and other establishments. This is a construction material that is very easy to install, very durable, and very easy to repair. One crucial aspect of working with drywall is knowing how to cut the material to your desired shape. Here is the best way to cut drywall.

Drywall Cutting Tools

It is best to buy power tools if you are a contractor or you earn a living out of cutting drywall panels. However, if you are only doing it as a home improvement project, you can always make do with hand tools.

Drywall Cutting Tools

Utility Knife

This is the single most important hand tool any DIYer can have. It does not cut the drywall panel through and through. Instead, the knife creates a shallow cut beneath the panel’s surface. This allows you to snap the panel in two.

Keyhole Saw

Some people call it the jab saw. The keyhole saw is perfect for making irregular, curved, or circular cuts in drywall. This is perfect for making small holes and cutting circles with very tight radius.

Drywall Saw

If you want more precise cuts of drywall, then you may want to stick with a drywall saw. This is specific for wallboard, backing boards, and gypsum. Look at it as the hand tool equivalent of your power reciprocating saw.

People who prefer power tools can use a reciprocating saw, an oscillating multi-tool, or a spiral saw. There are also power tools that already feature a dust collection component.

How to Cut Drywall

Cutting drywall involves marking the section that you want to cut. It also involves protecting yourself against the dangers of dust inhalation. Let us take a more detailed look at how you can cut a drywall panel using a utility knife.

How to Cut Drywall Straight

Always mark the line that you want to cut straight. You can also use a 4-foot long drywall square to serve as a guide in the straight-line cutting. Here are the step:

  • Mark the drywall section that you want to cut

    Mark the drywall section that you want to cut.
  • Score the paper surface

    Score the paper surface.
  • Pull the drywall panel towards the end of the table, making sure that the panel to be cut is dangling on the edge of the table

    Pull the drywall panel towards the end of the table, making sure that the panel to be cut is dangling on the edge of the table.
  • Apply pressure on the dangling panel to snap the drywall at the scored line

    Apply pressure on the dangling panel to snap the drywall at the scored line.
  • Flip the drywall so that the backside will be facing the ceiling

    Flip the drywall so that the backside will be facing the ceiling.
  • Check the crease made by the folding of the paper backing. Use the utility knife to cut along the crease

    Check the crease made by the folding of the paper backing. Use the utility knife to cut along the crease.
  • Remove the cut drywall panel

    Remove the cut drywall panel.

How to Cut Drywall a Square or Rectangle

The steps for cutting a square or rectangle on a drywall is almost the same as cutting a circle. However, you only need to cut 3 sides using the keyhole saw.

  • Cut the right, left, and bottom lines using the keyhole saw

    Cut the right, left, and bottom lines using the keyhole saw.
  • Score the upper line using the utility knife

    Score the upper line using the utility knife.
  • Push the cut drywall to remove it

    Push the cut drywall to remove it.

If you are cutting a larger square or rectangle, it is best to use a drywall saw. Follow the steps we outlined above.

How to Cut Drywall a Circle

If you are going to cut a circle in a drywall using a keyhole saw, here are the steps:

  • Position the tip of the keyhole saw inside the line of the section you wish to cut

    Position the tip of the keyhole saw inside the line of the section you wish to cut.
  • Push the keyhole saw through the drywall. Wiggle it a bit to help in the insertion of the saw

    Push the keyhole saw through the drywall. Wiggle it a bit to help in the insertion of the saw.
  • Start moving the keyhole saw back and forth through the drywall and follow the inside of the line

    Start moving the keyhole saw back and forth through the drywall and follow the inside of the line.
  • Remove the drywall panel

    Remove the drywall panel.
  • Score any section that is not cut using the keyhole saw by using a utility knife

    Score any section that is not cut using the keyhole saw by using a utility knife.
  • Continue sawing off the remaining section using the keyhole saw

    Continue sawing off the remaining section using the keyhole saw.
  • Clean or smoothen the edges of the drywall using the utility knife

    Clean or smoothen the edges of the drywall using the utility knife.

How to Cut Drywall on Wall

You can follow our step-by-step instructions on cutting drywall on the wall. However, it is important to check your building plan to determine the location of electrical wires or plumbing in your wall. Avoid cutting into these.

  • If you are going to cut a square, first cut the right, left, and bottom lines of the square or rectangle using the keyhole saw.
  • If you are going to cut a square, first cut the right, left, and bottom lines of the square or rectangle using the keyhole saw.

How to Cut Drywall without Dust

Hand tools are your best options when it comes to cutting drywall without dust. You can control the force of the back and forth motion of the saw to help minimize dust production. A utility knife offers the best possible dust-reducing method of cutting drywall. You can also buy a track saw that features a dust collection mechanism. Or, use the shaving cream hack.

  • Apply shaving cream on the wall. It will capture all the dust particles.
  • Begin sawing. You can notice that there is no duct being spread and go to your lungs.

The best way to cut drywall is by using a utility knife and a few other basic tools. What is important to remember is to always start by marking the section that you want to cut. Also consider protecting yourself against dust.

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