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Using Tools

How To Install Acoustic Ceiling

Useful Ceiling and Grid Terminology

  • Border Panel – ceiling panels cut to create a perimeter around the room

  • Main Beam – load-bearing beams of a suspension system that are hung with hanger wires

  • Cross-Tee – shorter steel beams that run perpendicular and parallel to main beams to form the grid openings that support the tiles.

  • Wall Molding – attaches to the wall to support tiles and offers a consistent visual to the main beams and cross tees for a finished look

  • Hanger Wire – 12-gauge wire used to suspend main beams from ceiling joists

  • Fasteners – attach hanger wire to ceiling joists

Necessary Tools

  • Tape Measure

  • Hammer

  • ​Utility Knife

  • Straight Edge

  • 2' or 3' Carpenter's Level

  • Tin Snips

  • String or Chalk Line

  • Clamp

  • Wire Cutting Pillers

  • Magnetic Level

  • Safety Glasses

The installation of suspended ceiling tiles begins with a ceiling grid plan and a strong structure.

The first step is to determine the size of the border panels. Divide the width of the room by the length of a single panel, add the remaining length to the single panel, then divide the result by two to get the length of your border panels. Divide the length of the room by the width of a single panel, add the remaining amount to the width of a single panel, then divide the result by two to get the width of your border panels.

The Second step is to install wall molding. On the wall, write the new ceiling height that you prefer. In order to create this guideline, use the chalk line tool. On every wall, repeat. Ensure that every line in the room is parallel and level. Marking the location of the molding may be done more quickly if you have a laser level on hand. Attach wall molding to the studs next. Use the proper fasteners for concrete or stone walls, or install a main beam runner from the joist next to the wall to replace the wall molding.

The third step would be to install hanger wires. A chalk line that is perpendicular to the ceiling joists should be used to indicate the location of each major beam. A main beam's center distance should be 4 feet. To secure hanger wire, screw in the wire fasteners and wrap the wire three times around itself. Hang a leveling string between two nails to determine the proper bending angle for hanger wire. Every nail need to be positioned 7/8" above the wall molding's base.

The fourth step is to install Cross Tees. The border tees must be measured and cut to match the size of the border panel.  Attach the uncut end of the tees to the main beam and place the cut end on the wall molding.  In accordance with the border cross tees, now insert the first two uncut cross tees. When joining two cross tees in a main beam's rectangular hole, place the second tee into the slot by going beyond the first one's right side.

The Final step is to install tiles. At an angle, slide the tile through the grid hole.  Gently lower into position. Using the panel face up, make any necessary holes or border tile cuts using a utility knife. 

Concrete Structure
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