What is a Level 5 Finish?

The classification of drywall finishes on a 0 to 5 scale is a fairly new development, having only been around since 1991, so there often are discrepancies amongst tradesmen about the definition and interpretation of different finish levels. To be fair, the finish numbers are generally not used in the field, all except one—the smoothest and finest finish of them all. The Level 5 finish.

What steps are involved in a level 5 finish?

In laymen’s terms, a level 5 finish is drywall that has been taped, given a first and second coat, sanded briefly before applying a thin “skim coat” to the entire surface. The skim coat is then also sanded, and put under intense light to look for imperfections in the smoothness.

When is a level 5 called for?

In many circumstances, a level 5 finish is not required. Sometimes just the first two coats and a brief sanding will do, but sometimes it’s gotta be level 5. Smooth finished ceilings, areas of critical lightning, and generally whenever a high gloss paint is is used will almost always call for a level 5 finish. Other times a level 5 finish may simply be a style or personal preference choice.