I’ve been drywalling for years, and today I want to go over the top 5 drywall tools I have personally used. I stand by each and every one of these drywall tools regarding quality and efficiency. If a drywall tool isn’t good enough for my 5 stars, you won’t be reading about it here.
Drywall tools have been getting more innovative over time. Maybe you stand by your hand-finishing skills, and that’s okay! Maybe you have some of these tools already, and that’s awesome. Each of these drywall tools will make your job much easier. Some with practice, some it’ll click right away and you’ll be wondering why you haven’t invested sooner!
Top Drywall Tools #1: The WEN Drywall Sander
This is by far one of the most sought drywall tools out of all of them, and the most commonly searched for. Drywall sanders are a great tool to have because they can speed up your time sanding by nearly 50% (compared to sanding by hand).
I’ve seen jobs done by rookies just getting into the trade, and they use palm sanders… DON’T BE THAT GUY. Palm sanders and drywall sanders are entirely different.
Drywall sanders are designed to easily sand areas with minimal dust. They have circular holes in the head of the sander that connect to the hose of the tool, so you can hook up to a shop vac or a Festool HEPA vac.
I have really enjoyed using the WEN Drywall Sander. I’ve also spoken to other drywall finishers who stand by the product. It’s lasted me 3 years now and still going strong!
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Why I Rate The WEN Drywall Sander 5 stars
The two main things that sold me on the WEN drywall sander were the cost and ease of use. Compared to other drywall sanders, the WEN Drywall Sander is inexpensive. It’s inexpensive because you more than likely already have a shop vac, and this sander connects right to it.
You don’t have to go out and buy a whole HEPA vacuum and sander package. This thing is a workhorse, and you’ll be able to sand with less drywall dust and customers love that too!
Top Drywall Tools #2: Level 5 Skimming Blades
LEVEL5’s skimming blades are a very handy tool to have with you. Their ergonomic design saves your wrists and makes skimming compound on walls 10x easier.
When LEVEL5 began to design their skimming blades, they actually had feedback and input from drywall finishers before putting it onto the market. Now, it is one of LEVEL5’s top sellers.
If you haven’t used a skimming blade before, a majority of these blades are 16”+. Some do fall under that size, but to be up-front with you, I prefer using the larger ones. My personal favorites are the 24” and 32” blades.
I use a 24” skimming blade for my final passes on butts, and my 32” when I need to skim-coat an entire wall or ceiling. These paired with the extension handle make jobs a breeze. If you ever have to skim-coat an entire ceiling or wall, you’ll wish you had them.
Top Drywall Tools #3: Drywall Mixing Paddle
When I say drywall mixing paddle, I don’t mean the tiny paint whips companies give you as part of their set. I mean a BIG paddle, one that lets you mix an entire 5-gallon bucket at once.
Nothing bugged me more than mixing a little bit each time, then mudding. Mix, mud, and repeat. I prefer to mix it all at once and mud away until I open the next bucket.
I personally use an electric mortar mixer instead of the drywall mixing paddle. If you’re looking to save some money on a drywall mixing paddle, you can just grab the paddle for a fraction of the cost. Both of these will work!
Drywall Mixing Paddle
Top Drywall Tools #4: Drywall Stilts
If you’re allowed to in your area, drywall stilts have also been a game changer for me. Before you scroll down to number 5, hear me out. I’m 230 llbs, barely touching 5’8”, which doctors say “you’re obese”. It’s just a medical term they use to say I should lose a few. But, these don’t stop me from being able to use drywall stilts.
If you could finish ceilings without having to move around a platform, would you? That’s what got me into stilts in the first place. I didn’t like all of the extra steps here and there in order to finish a ceiling. I just wanted to get up and go!
I learned how to use drywall stilts at 35, I’m now 36 as of writing this post. Before I even attempted to use them on jobs, I tried them out in the comfort of my own home – using the walls or counters as my safety until I got the hang of using drywall stilts.
It appears as though DuraStilts are on backorder as of today, but check in from time to time for availability.
If I can do it, I know you can do it too. Scary at first, but if you push through your comfort zone you will be zippin’ through ceilings!
Top Drywall Tools #5: Automatic Taping Tools
The last drywall tool that I want to recommend is investing in automatic Taping Tools. If you’re like me and don’t want to spend a ton of money at once, you could slowly add more and more to your tool Arsenal.
Of course, when anyone begins finishing drywall they should learn by hand first. but once you start to get the hang of things you’ll start to understand that there actually are better and more efficient ways to finish drywall.
Many guys will say they’ve been finishing drywall for 30 years and never want to change from hand finishing – and that’s totally okay. I’m not saying they’re bad at all. But if you think about how much the world has changed in the past 30 years, You will understand that automatic Taping Tools are starting to become the future of drywall finishing.
The guys who still finish my hand will still have jobs and will always have work because they carry a skill not many have. but for the guy who is knocking out new construction homes, and new additions and wants to make the most profit off of that job, automatic Taping Tools are a key factor in that profit.
If time = money, then automatic taping tools = money.
How much are Automatic Taping Tools?
For automatic taping tool sets, you can expect to pay a few grand. If you’re looking to purchase one at a time and add more over time, they can range anywhere from $300-$1,000.
The automatic taping tools I stand by are Level5, due to their high quality and a generous warranty.
If you’re starting your automatic taping tool set, I recommend beginning with a drywall bazooka. These are the most sought-after, and biggest price chunk out of automatic taping toolsets. Once you knock this one out, obtaining the rest will be easy.
To sum up the top 5 must-have drywall tools for the job, I covered the WEN Drywall Sander, Skimming Blades, Mixing Paddles, Stilts, and Automatic Taping Tools. I stand by these five products because they are huge time savers. I’m able to complete jobs faster at either the same price or a more competitive price.
If you’re in it to win it, these tools will help you get there. I really hope this article helps you out with your future jobs. Let me know how you do in the comments below!