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Old 02-23-2012, 07:35 AM
 
Location: UK but on the way to NJ!
239 posts, read 961,289 times
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We are going to be refinishing our basement and are researching the advantages/disadvantages of a drop ceiling vs. sheet rock. I like the idea of having the basement with a "real" ceiling like the rest of the house, and not look like the ceiling at the dentist's office. Are there differences in cost? Are there any advantages to a drop ceiling that make it a better choice?

Thanks!
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Old 02-23-2012, 08:00 AM
 
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The obvious answer is with drop you have access to all utility's at will,plumbing electric,tv wiring.
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Old 02-23-2012, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
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Of all the contracts to build that included basement finish and/or subsequent contracts for basement finishing my level of finish was always that of the upper level of the home. To include trim/millwork, bath finishes, etc.
I can only recall two jobs that the H/O wanted drop ceiling- maybe they were tightwads. They had extremely tight budgets and that was all I could offer in order to make it work. I did have one other job that went the opposite direction- All exposed ceiling, everything painted black. The foundation walls were 12'. It gave it an industrial type look. Which is another thing that I always try to steer people away from. Making the basement finish in a style that not keeping with the rest of the house is actually a losing proposition- you actually lose more on resale potential.

Anyway, I too am a large proponent of drywall ceiling for basement finishes- drop ceilings are cheap- look cheap (with a few exceptions) and afford easy access to mechanicals as previously mentioned.
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Old 02-23-2012, 10:39 AM
 
Location: UK but on the way to NJ!
239 posts, read 961,289 times
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I hope that I wouldn't have to access pipes, etc. too often if ever, but is it crazy expensive to just cut a hole in the drywall and then patch it later if that happens? Are there little hatch doors that can be put into drywall at key points? I could be just inventing that, but it seems like a good idea. Thank you for the feedback. My basement is on two levels (original house and addition) and we don't have a lot of headroom to spare on the old side. Plus it would look more commercial looking instead of a house. Is drywall much more expensive?
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:16 AM
 
Location: southwestern PA
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We have both in our basement...
drywall where we don't need access, drop panels where we do.
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Old 02-23-2012, 12:21 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
10,480 posts, read 40,493,122 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggywink View Post
I hope that I wouldn't have to access pipes, etc. too often if ever (That is always the assumption that I go by, if everything is in place before covering it up and there were no problems to begin with- reasonable logic would dictate that there would probably never be a need to open it up), but is it crazy expensive to just cut a hole in the drywall and then patch it later if that happens? (Absolutely not. Especially if it is fixed in a timely matter- i.e., a leak) Are there little hatch doors that can be put into drywall at key points? (Yes, there are access doors/panels specifically made for that type of purpose. Like water shutoffs, gas shutoffs, etc.)I could be just inventing that, but it seems like a good idea. Thank you for the feedback. My basement is on two levels (original house and addition) and we don't have a lot of headroom to spare on the old side. Plus it would look more commercial looking instead of a house. Is drywall much more expensive?
Drywalling the ceiling is really not that much more expensive. When you consider that the drywall guys are there away. The majority of the additional expense is the framing that is involved to get a ceiling ready for drywall and the possible relocation of mechanicals in order to achieve the finish.
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Old 02-23-2012, 01:41 PM
 
Location: UK but on the way to NJ!
239 posts, read 961,289 times
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thank you for that information! I appreciate it what you said in the other post about people wanting the finish of the basement to match the rest of the house makes sense to me, I didn't know it would affect resale. I don't hate the look of drop ceilings but I always notice when a basement has drywall, crown moldings, and other features that make it look more finished. thanks again!
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Old 02-23-2012, 03:00 PM
 
1,325 posts, read 2,435,453 times
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We just finished our basement a few months ago and only 2 weeks later, we had a pipe leak! If had not had a drop ceiling, our damage and cost would have been considerable. We lost only 1 tile with only slight damage. If we had a traditional ceiling, it would have been a huge mess.
We decided on the drop ceiling for easy access as well as cost. The low clearance drop ceiling was something we could install ourselves. We purchased the embossed tiles and painted them along with the grids with a metallic paint and the effect is attractive. Mind you, no one is fooled into thinking that it is an original tin ceiling but it does not look anything like a dentist's office and goes well with the rest of the basement.
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Old 02-23-2012, 03:57 PM
 
Location: UK but on the way to NJ!
239 posts, read 961,289 times
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wow taloola, that is exactly my fear! we've never had a drop of water from the pipes above but murphy's law says as soon as we have the whole thing finished, that's what would happen. what a great idea to paint the tiles and frames to blend it. I think I know what you are talking about, I just searched for drop ceilings on pinterest and there are some that look tin, paneling, almost 3d. The ones like these don't look bad but the ones I like best are expensive.
Ceilume Smart Ceiling Tiles
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Old 02-23-2012, 05:03 PM
 
20,793 posts, read 48,921,318 times
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Drop.....having to get to pipes, etc. through the drywall is a MESS.

There are a lot of decorative tiles for drop ceilings on the market now that it doesn't have to look like a dentist office.

Ceiling Tiles by Armstrong

You can get them to look like tin or other designs. They are paintable as well if you want something that isn't white.

Ceilings and Ceiling Tile Systems by Armstrong : Circles

Or the ones that tiggywink posted.
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