When you want to change the look of your paneling consider painting it. Painting paneling is less expensive than replacing paneling.
You do not have to be a skilled carpenter or painting professional to paint paneling. You simply need to know the steps involved in the process. Anyone can paint paneling.
Before you can start painting paneling you must prepare the paneling, and the room for the painting process. The following tips from our experts will help you to transform your room and create a professional finish that you are proud of.
The first thing you have to do is assess your paneling and determine if it is solid wood paneling, or if it is a vinyl paneling.
If your paneling is vinyl coated then there are a few extra steps you have to take before you begin to paint.
Painting a Vinyl Paneling
Interior paint (You can use latex or an epoxy paint. You do need to shop for high quality paint that covers well. Cheap paint will likely require more coats of paint and more work)
Lightweight spackle and a putty knife to apply it with
Step One - Lightly stand
The first thing that you need to do is lightly sand the paneling. You will not need to use a great deal of pressure because your goal is not to remove the vinyl coating completely, you are simply roughing the texture of the coating so the paint can adhere to it.
Tip: You MUST do this sanding by hand. An electric sander is too aggressive and may damage the paneling. Take a small block of wood and wrap the sandpaper around the block. Then sand the wall in circular motions. The circular motions will keep you from creating grooves or lines that will be noticeable after you apply the paint.
Step Two - Use shopy water to clean
You now need to take the soapy water and clean the paneling thoroughly.
Tip: A minute amount of dust will cause the paint to either not adhere or you will see a noticeable “clump” when you paint.
Step Three - Protect your floor using drop clots and painters tape
Use your painters tape and drop cloths to cover any areas you do not want to paint. Cover your flooring so you do not damage it, tape any trim, hardware on doors, tape around the ceiling, tape the windows, and any trim that you do not wish to paint.
Step Four - Use wood putty to fill the paneling
Now you can fill the paneling grooves using the wood putty if you desire to do so.
Tip: Even if you do not see the dust on the paneling there is a good chance that some dust is there. Wipe the paneling from top to bottom with a clean cloth to make sure that all dust is removed.
Step Five - Apply two thin coats of primer
Apply the primer.
Tip: when you apply the primer do not simply use the roller in an up and down pattern. You should paint in an up and down, side to side, and vertical configuration so that you do not create a pattern that shows up after you apply the paint.
Step Six - Apply at least two thin coats of paint
Time to paint
Use the same technique as you used when applying the primer
Tip: You may not need to brush the paint over the places where the paneling grooves were when you are applying your second coat of paint
Now you simply clean up all of your painting tools, remove the painters tape, and remove the drop cloths. Enjoy your new look!
How to Paint Over Wood Paneling
You are basically going to follow the same steps for painting wood paneling that you would use on vinyl paneling.
You may not have to sand wood paneling prior to painting if the surface area does not have a varnish or finish that will inhibit paint adherence.
Tip: It is recommended that you sand the paneling lightly even if it is solid wood. This will insure that your primer and paint will adhere properly to the surface.
If the paneling has visible knots you want to apply a shellac based primer so that the knots are completely covered
Always allow the first coat to dry completely before you apply the second coat.
Always allow plenty of ventilation in a room you are painting. This will help the paint dry faster and allow you to breathe easier.
Painting paneling can transform a room completely. It does not cost much money to paint the paneling and everyone can do this job, no matter what their skill level is.
Before you paint your paneling make sure that you gather all of your supplies, and that you are prepared with a face mask and goggles.
When you paint there will be some fumes, so make sure that the room is properly ventilated, and that you take breaks and step out of the room to breathe in some fresh air.