Drywall texture styles can be grouped into two categories based on their method of application. Textures that are applied manually using basic hand tools are referred to as hand textures. Drywall textures that are pumped through a machine are referred to as spray textures.
Hand Drywall Textures
There are so many different types of hand drywall textures that it is impossible to list them all here. Even when tradesmen use similar techniques, each person can create unique textures. Some hand textures are applied with a pan and knife or a hawk and trowel. Some drywall textures make use of special brushes to stomp or swirl patterns in the mud.
At times drywall mud is spread over the entire surface using a paint roller or high powered paint sprayer. Brushes, knives, or rollers are then used to create patterns in the mud. These types of textures are also considered hand textures, even though a sprayer is used for application. Hand drywall textures vary greatly depending on the skill level or techniques used. Even when using similar techniques, two different tradesmen can produce very different drywall texture styles.
Check out the following links for more information on individual types of drywall texture. The articles linked below also contain images of different types of drywall textur as well as tips on how to apply them.
Spray Drywall Textures
Spray textures are created using machines with powerful pumps that feed drywall mud through long hoses using specialized nozzles that create different types of texture. These types of texture are considered spray textures because the style of texture is determined by the sprayer, rather than hand tools.
The following links contain information on specific drywall textures that are applied using electric or gas powered sprayers. They also contain images of different drywall texture styles as well as tips on how to apply them.
Drywall texture sprayers come in many different brands, shapes, and sizes. They generally consist of a hopper which holds texture material, a powerful pump to move the material, an air compressor to mix air with the material, hoses, and specialized nozzle. The texture pump on smaller machines may be a diaphragm pump driven by compressed air or rotary or other style pump driven by an electric motor. Larger spray rigs have gas or diesel motors to power both the texture material pump and the air compressor. The internal combustion engines on larger texture rigs are capable of pumping more material over greater distances which allows for more uniform drywall textures.
Texture mud is pumped through a long hose to a gun operated by hand triggers. The texture gun mixes texture material with compressed air just before it is spray onto the drywall surface. The type of texture is determined by the type of material used, the size and type of nozzle on the texture gun, and the amount of compressed air introduced into the mud.
Smooth Wall Finish
Although smooth wall is not technically considered a type of drywall texture, it is a popular option for finishing drywall walls and ceilings. For more information on how to create smooth walls please read this article. It discusses in detail how to roll skim drywall surfaces. The drywall industry uses a system that refers to different levels of finished drywall. The different levels of finish outline what procedures should be used when finishing drywall. Smooth wall usually requires a level five finish.
Matching drywall texture is difficult because of the various methods and tools used. Here are five tips for matching drywall texture. If you follow these tips you can ensure that your drywall texture will match seamlessly with the surrounding drywall texture. There is also a tip on matching knockdown texture.
Certain textures are better suited for walls than ceilings. Please read this article to learn more about which types of textures are best for walls or ceilings.