Tapers: Everything You Need to Know About This Occupation

Tapers: Everything You Need to Know About This Occupation

Are you curious about the taping industry? Tapers are skilled professionals who work in construction, interior design, and painting sectors. They are responsible for taping, sanding, and painting drywall perfectly and creating a smooth and seamless surface. These professionals work to achieve an aesthetic and functional appeal.

Examples of Tape Jobs

Construction professionals rely on tapers for finishing drywall installation projects in commercial and home buildings. The process of taping usually involves applying paper tape to the joint and then applying several layers of mud to the tape. Finally, they sand down the mud with a drywall sander and apply the final layer of paint.

Tapers might also be required to work on damaged drywalls. They must apply the right amount of mud to fill holes and damaged areas. Other jobs might involve smoothing out the texture of the drywalls or creating intricate designs.

Education and Training to Become a Taper

Becoming a taper requires a high school diploma or equivalent qualification. However, most job opportunities demand some form of experience or training. One can attend vocational school or apprenticeship programs to obtain the necessary skills and techniques. Apprenticeship programs usually take three to four years to complete. They combine on-the-job training with classroom instruction.

Applicants without prior experience or training can begin their career as a taper’s helper or an apprentice. They usually learn through observation and hands-on experience. Once they gain enough knowledge and skills, they can apply for the journeyman certification program.

Progression in the Field

Tapers can progress through the ranks by acquiring more experience, taking on more complex projects, or furthering their education. Many tapers eventually become self-employed and establish their own businesses. Advanced training can lead to opportunities as estimators, supervisors, or project managers.


Tapers play an essential role in the construction, interior design, and painting sectors. Their skills and expertise contribute to creating visually appealing and functional spaces. Individuals willing to pursue this career must focus on obtaining the necessary education and training, obtaining the journeyman certification, and gaining experience. Growth in the industry is possible through progression, additional training, and building a successful business.

Occupation: Tapers

Tapers are skilled workers who specialize in preparing walls and ceilings for paint and wallpaper by taping and finishing drywall joints and corners. They are responsible for applying mud and paper tape to drywall seams and smoothing them out to create a seamless finish. Tapers may also be responsible for sanding, texturing, and painting walls and ceilings.

Job Level: Tapers cannot be leveled as their skill level and experience varies widely.

Salary Data:
The salary data for Tapers varies depending on several factors, including union membership and job level. According to the US National Average, Tapers earn an annual salary of $66,518.40 on average, with a range of $62,920.00 to $80,891.20.

Unionization can have a significant impact on Tapers’ salaries. Unionized Tapers earn an average of $80,891.20 per year, which is significantly higher than non-unionized Tapers, who earn an average of $54,662.40 per year. However, union membership is not necessary for Tapers, and many work as non-unionized contractors.

The average salary for Tapers varies across different geographies in the US. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the two geographies where Tapers are best paid are:

1. Hawaii – Average annual salary of $96,660
2. New York – Average annual salary of $90,430

On the other hand, the two geographies where Tapers are least paid on average are:

1. Arkansas – Average annual salary of $26,470
2. West Virginia – Average annual salary of $27,030

Data Table:

| Job Level | Unionization | Salary (National Average) |
| All Levels | Unionized | $80,891.20 |
| All Levels | Non-Unionized | $54,662.40 |
| Not able to be Leveled | Full-time, unionized | $76,107.20 |
| Not able to be Leveled | Full-time, non-unionized | $63,024.00 |
| All Levels | Full-time | $66,393.60 |
| All Levels | Time-based pay | $65,873.60 |