Tin Ceiling Tiles: DIY Installation Instructions — Part II

Written by Milan Jara on 22nd Sep 2011

This is the second part of a series of posts featuring easy to follow DIY instructions on upgrading a your home with nail up tin ceiling tiles. If you happened to miss Part 1, the post covered room and ceiling preparation, but we’re now ready to begin the actual tile layout. I should mention that while these instructions are written with tin ceiling tiles in mind, they also work for other nail up tiles offered by Decorative Ceiling Tiles.

At this point in the project, your room’s ceiling should be covered with 3/8 or 1/2 inch plywood and all remnants and debris from that phase now cleaned up. We are now ready to determine where to place the first tile on the ceiling.

Start your Tin Ceiling Tiles in the Center of the Room

The first step in your tin ceiling tile installation is determining the center of the room. In many rooms there may be a ceiling fan or light fixture already located in the center and if this is the case in your situation, you might want to consider a medallion style tile to serve as an accent for the fixture. If you don’t have a light marking the center of the room, just use the diagonal string method to determine the location to start the your tile installation.

Tin Ceiling Tile Styles

A string or chalk line can be pulled from diagonal corners and where they meet in the middle is normally the center of the room. If you’re working alone during this phase, just hammer a finish nail into the newly installed plywood at each corner to hold the string — the nail only needs to go in far enough to hold the string securely and then it can be removed. If your room is a rectangle or square configuration, this method is fairly accurate, but if you have some wall offsets or angles, you may need to do a little additional figuring. You can normally tell if you’ve marked the correct spot just by standing back and looking at the mark.

Mark the center of each perimeter wall and pull your string across the ceiling to the mark on the opposite wall. If everything has been done correctly and you have taken into account any offsets, the lines should cross at the center mark you already created. Snap or mark the new lines and you are now ready to install your first tin ceiling tiles.

Medallion Tin Ceiling Tile

Nail up tin ceiling tiles normally overlap the preceding tile when being installed — it’s important to allow for this when doing all measuring and doing any cutouts for ceiling vents or registers. In the last post in the series, we will install the tin ceiling tiles, fill in the perimeter gaps, and nail up any trim or cornice at the room edges that you may be considering.

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