Choosing a bathroom finish is not always easy. The ceiling surface is no exception. High humidity, temperature changes, which are quite sharp, significantly reduce the list of possible finishing materials. Not all of them are able to maintain their appearance and properties in such conditions. Let’s figure out how to choose the finish and assemble the suspended ceiling in the bathroom ourselves .
Why choose a suspended structure
Bathroom – a room with a special microclimate. Therefore, it requires a moisture-resistant, durable finish that is easy to clean from dirt. Experts recommend paying attention to hinged structures. Their peculiarity is that the cladding is not attached to the ceiling, but to the frame fixed to it. This has a number of benefits.
Benefits of suspension systems
- Leveling the ceiling surface. The lathing is fixed so that the plane is perfectly flat. Compared to leveling with plaster, this requires less labor and is cheaper.
- The ability to disguise any engineering communications. Electrical wires, water pipes, etc. are laid under the cladding.
- Possibility of arranging spot lighting . For bathrooms, as well as for others in the house, different lighting scenarios are relevant. And the point light can be the main one.
- Additional insulation. Those who live on the upper floors can add additional layers of waterproofing and thermal insulation. This will protect them from leaks, cold and heat.
- Ease of installation. If desired, do it yourself. No special equipment required.
Hinged systems also have disadvantages.
- Most importantly, the ceiling gets lower. On average, 5-10 cm of the height of the room is “eaten”. For high rooms this is not scary, but for typical Khrushchev and similar apartments it is very noticeable.
- The remaining disadvantages depend on what kind of cladding the owner chooses. So, plastic of low quality turns yellow over time , poor quality drywall can be destroyed by moisture, especially after a leak from above, etc.
Varieties of cladding
All hinged systems have a frame fixed to the ceiling. This is a common building block. But different cladding can be fixed on it. Depending on what it will be, several varieties are distinguished.
Most often these are polyvinyl chloride lamellas. MDF panels are used similarly . But it is undesirable to mount them in a damp room: they will quickly become unusable. Plastic is easy to install, it is insensitive to moisture and other adverse events, easy to clean. Subject to the rules of operation, it will last a very long time. The only thing that is dangerous for plastic is strong impacts and other mechanical damage.
PVC panels are available with tongue-and-groove locks, which makes them easy to install. After assembly, a solid canvas is obtained, which, if necessary, can be easily disassembled. For example, to replace a bar that has become unusable. A large selection of textures and colors makes it possible to embody any design solution. Another plus is the low price of the material and the availability of installation profiles on sale that cover the seams and joints of the panel.
They can be different: wood, metal, plastic. In the bathroom, PVC lamellas are most often used. They differ from panels in size. In addition, a distinction is made between closed and open type lathing. In the first case, there are thorn-and-groove locks at the edges, which allows you to assemble a single piece of cloth with inconspicuous joints. In the second case, as a result of the assembly, small gaps remain between the strips. They are covered with decorative overlays. Both varieties are easy to install. Narrow slats bend well, so a curved finish is possible. Plastic tolerates dampness, temperature changes, but is afraid of mechanical damage.
The sheets are fixed to the frame, it turns out an even canvas. It becomes the basis for finishing. It can be paint or wallpaper. The latter option is undesirable for bathrooms. For installation, choose only moisture-resistant drywall , it is painted green. All other varieties will quickly become unusable.
Installing gypsum boards is more difficult than panels or slats. The plates are large and heavy, you cannot do without helpers. But the material is well cut, bends easily. From it, structures of a straight and curved configuration are obtained. Installation of multi-level built-in lighting is possible. The downside can be considered the need for subsequent finishing of the gypsum board. It includes puttying, special attention is paid to joints and areas of fasteners installation, priming, painting or wallpapering.
These are not all types of hinged structures. These also include cassette and stretch ceilings . In the first case, cassette panels of standard sizes are attached to the frame. In the second, with the help of special equipment, a synthetic cloth is pulled. But they are usually placed in separate categories.
Bathroom false ceiling installation instructions
All suspended systems are mounted in approximately the same way. But there are certainly differences. Let’s take a closer look at two possible options.
How to assemble a drywall structure
All the necessary engineering communications are carried out before installation. They must be assembled and installed. If recessed lighting is planned, the wiring must also be ready. It is assembled and fixed in place prior to the assembly of the frame. A rough ceiling does not require any preparation. Only if it was covered with plaster and it peels off, it is advisable to remove large overhanging pieces. Otherwise, they will fall during installation work.
You will need gypsum plasterboard sheets (moisture resistant); to assemble the lathing, you need guides, ceiling profiles and metal perforated suspensions. They will be needed if the profiles are planned to be located at some distance from the base. Then, in order to avoid sagging, they are fixed on suspension mounts. Self-tapping screws are used as fasteners.
We offer step-by-step instructions on how to make a suspended plasterboard ceiling in the bathroom .
- We start with the markup. We determine the level at which we will mount the ceiling. We mark it on all walls. The lower edge of the profile strips will be attached here. We outline the location of the profiles. There should be the same distance between them, no more than 0.5 m. If necessary, mark the areas for attaching the suspensions. They are located above the profile elements with a pitch of no more than 0.4 m.
- We install suspension mounts. With a drill or perforate with a suitable drill, we make holes at each mark. Their depth should be slightly greater than the length of the dowel . We insert a dowel into each hole, hammer it in with a hammer. We put the suspension in place, fix it with a self-tapping screw.
- We collect the crate. We make holes for dowels for fixing the profile elements. We put the dowels in place. With the help of the building level, we expose each lathing bar, fix it to the base or on a suspension. We reinforce the sections of intersection of the profiles with mounting “crabs”.
- We check how the plane of the assembled lathing is formed. We do this using a level. The plane must be strictly horizontal. If this is not the case, we correct the shortcomings.
- We fix the drywall . Lift the sheet and apply it to the guides. We fasten it with countersunk screws. The step of the fasteners is 250-400 mm. The necessary trimming is best done with a jigsaw with a metal saw.
- We putty the joints and the depressed areas above the fasteners. We dilute a suitable putty or take a ready-made paste. We glue the joints, on top of it we alternately apply two or three layers of putty mass. We level everything neatly.
You can proceed to further finishing only after the base is completely dry. It is best to apply a coat of finishing putty to the entire surface and let it dry again. The base prepared in this way can be painted with any moisture-resistant paint. You can paste wallpaper. But in this case, moisture-resistant canvases and special glue are selected. Sometimes a protective layer of colorless varnish is additionally applied. The photo shows the highlights of the finishing process.
How to make a ceiling from plastic panels
For manufacturing, you will need metal slats on the crate, curly profile strips for installing lamellas, self-tapping screws. Suspensions may be needed. They are needed if the slats are not fixed to the rough base, and their length is more than 120 cm. In this case, the loose plastic panel may sag.
Step by step actions
- We carry out the markup. Mark on the wall where the bottom edge of the panel will be. We draw a line around the perimeter of the entire room. We check the horizontal with a level. On the line we outline holes with a pitch of 250-300 mm for fasteners. If suspensions are needed, we outline the areas of their fastening to the ceiling. Step – 400-450 mm.
- Installing hangers. To do this, at each mark you need to make a hole for the dowel. We perform it with a drill or a hammer drill with a victorious drill. We insert the dowel into the cavity, knock it in so that it fits tightly. We put the suspension in place, fix it with a self-tapping screw. We leave it as it is for now.
- Drill holes for fasteners on metal guides. The step is the same as on the wall. We prepare cavities for dowels on the marking. We insert plastic plugs into them. We apply the prepared guide to the wall, align the holes. We fix the part with self-tapping screws. Similarly, we put all the strips around the perimeter of the room.
- We put the battens of the crate. Bend the perforated plates of the previously installed hangers to the desired height. We put a profile part in them, fix it with self-tapping screws. We mount the entire crate in the same way.
- We mount the U-shaped profile element. The edges of the lamellas will be inserted into it. We apply the first part in the corner to the metal guide fixed on the wall. We fix it with galvanized screws. We move on, fill in the entire perimeter of the bathroom.
- We put the first panel. First, with a sharp knife, carefully cut off the spike on one side, which is intended to be attached to the adjacent lamella. This part will fit the wall. We put the ends of the plate into the cavity of the U-shaped profile. Carefully move the part, press it firmly against the wall. If there are suspensions, we fix the canvas to them with special fasteners.
- We do not cut the next and all other strips. We put the ends into the profile element, move the plate to the previous one. We put the edge spike into the groove of the already laid part, connect them tightly. We put all other lamellas in the same way. If necessary, during the installation process, we cut holes in them for lamps. This can be done with a sharp knife.
- We mount the last lamella. In very rare cases, it gets up whole, more often it has to be cut. We measure how much you need to cut. It is best to do this in several places, taking into account the curvature of the planes. Mark the cutting line on the panel, carefully cut it. The easiest way is to cut with a jigsaw , but you can also use a sharp knife. We put the prepared plate in place. It should fit snugly, without gaps.
Self-assembly is simple and takes little time. Usually, in one day, a new ceiling covering is ready, even if lighting fixtures still need to be installed. They are easy and quick to install. True, we must remember that some lamps heat up during operation, and this is undesirable for plastic. It can turn yellow, and ignite with prolonged intense heating. The photo below shows the suspended ceilings in the bathroom made of PVC panels.
Installing a harness system can seem daunting. But this is not the case. Following the instructions, even inexperienced craftsmen assemble the ceiling structure. The easiest way is to mount plastic panels or slats. They are lightweight, cut well, locks make it possible to easily assemble a solid canvas. Drywall is more difficult to work with. It’s heavy, so help is needed. In addition, additional finishing is required after installation.