Hanging paneling can be a great way to change the entire look of a room or even remodel an entire home effectively and efficiently. There are higher quality panels you can buy that don’t necessarily conform to the cheap looking sort of reputation that paneling has been given over the years. Perhaps the only reason for this stereotyping of paneling being tacky is because of the many landlords putting in very tacky and inexpensive paneling to quickly and cheaply recover a home’s walls so they can rent it out.
The stereotype however, does not always hold true. In fact if you want to spend a little more money on the panels, you can make a very nice looking rustic room that could even be on the cover of your favorite home and garden magazine. The point is that there is a very wide array of paneling possibilities that range from the tacky wood paneling used to cheaply remodel a rental to very elegant looking more expensive paneling types that will actually improve the net worth and beauty of you home without looking cheap or tacky if you do it right.
Types and Prices of Wood Paneling
There are many different types and prices for wood paneling and we will try to give you a good overview of what is available for how much in this section. Regardless of the look , thickness, texture, color or price of the panels, they mostly all have a couple things in common. They come in precut sizes that are handy for a variety of installations such as 8 by 10 foot panels, 3 by 6 feet sections and the like.
Prices, on the other hand, have a much wider range. There is a wall paneling type for every budget that is true. But as you well know if you are in the home repairing business, a lot of people want to go with the cheapest stuff around, that is how paneling has gotten its reputation for being cheap and boring. However, in reality, there are some very elegant paneling options that can really set off a room.
If you really want to make a nice looking room, stay away from hanging paneling like the drab old standard dark brown wood grain stuff and get creative. There is, for example, a nice knotty pine paneling that is ultra modern and looks nothing like the drab old brown stuff from the Brady Bunch era. Below we have gathered many different types of wall paneling ideas and listed their description and prices so you can see part of the wide range of possibilities there are with paneling:
Hanging Paneling Possibilities
Raised panel accenting kits (by wainscot) – These are kits for paneling an entire room or stairway even. They sell a variety of kits. They are not your avg. paneling though. Their kits consist of several different sized pieces that form a raised wood pattern on your wall that is about the furthest from the old boring paneling stereotypes as you can get. These don’t sell in per-panel prices, but in kits for rooms that range from $215 to $700 to transform a room or stairwell.
Elite Flat Paneled Wainscot – another great paneling option by Wainscot that have partial wall kits for about $164 and full wall kits from $300 to $500 depending on your needs. These are flat panels that are somewhat square shaped with separate strips of wood that run between them making an interesting pattern effect with wonderful looking wood grain.
Beaded Panel by Wainscot – This is a unique New England style pattern kit that runs about $200 for partial wall kits or stairway kits. These are kits meant for a single wall that cover about a four foot section at the bottom of the wall with a nice wood pattern. It would take at least four kits to do an entire room, so would cost about $800 to do a nice size room.
Elite Wall Paneled Wainscoting – are another paneling kit that has it’s own unique look and can be found on the wainscoting web site. These are meant for partial wall coverage and have a variety of heights including 6 feet high and 5 feet high kits that cost from $150 to $215 for enough to do an 8 feet long section of wall. The kits consist of several different sized pieces that fit together making a lovely pattern when assembled.
Tongue and Groove Paneling with Dura-Groove – this is an option for the slightly more eccentric customers. Dura-Groove provides a service where they come in your home, install their tongue and groove style paneling, sand and paint it onsite for around $4000. While a bit more expensive, it gives a great look to your home without you having to lift a finger.
Faux wood and stone panels – Here is a great opportunity for the do it yourself people on a budget. This site sells a wide variety of faux wood and stone imprint panels ranging from about $8 to $11 a square foot to cover a wall or room. They have a huge selection of styles including but not limited to; Bamboo, stonewall, rock face, cobble stone, granite, barn board, wood grain, pecky cypress, aged brick, brown brick, red brick and many, many more.
Those are just a few from some the sources we found online in just a few minutes. There is a lot of options out there, too many to mention here. Shop around and you are guaranteed to find a paneling solution that fits your home. There is a different type of paneling for just about any situation and style. Let’s talk about installation now!
Installing Wood Wall Panels
Since there are so many kinds of paneling, we will just cover how to install your common single piece sheets of paneling such as most do it yourself people would do if they were doing it on their own and not hiring a professional to come in and do it, like you may want to do for some of the more complex kits mentioned above.
1. Shut off any power to the room to be safe.
2. Prepare the walls – make sure to remove all molding and trim. Also make sure the electric outlets and switches will align properly to the paneling after it is up.
3. Grab a one by six furring strip and tack it onto the wall at the bottom. Then tack one up half way between floor and ceiling and finally one at the top along the ceiling. Use both nails and adhesive where needed on all furring strips.
4. Now tack up your furring strips going vertically. Use one by four furring strips here and do them in the same manner as the horizontal strips.
5. Install. Your first panel. The grooved edge should go into the corner of the wall. Place the panel in the corner and make sure it is perfectly level with your carpenter’s level. Nail the panel in place. Use a nail set and hammer to drive the nails flush anywhere you need to blind-nail your nails so they are not seen easily.
6. Put up the remaining boards on the wall until you reach the end and rip the end board to the proper size and put it up as well in a similar fashion.
7. You will have to make any outlet cutouts with a key saw or jig saw as you come to them. You can measure and mark them out one at a time. You may want to mark them out with chalk. To do that, make a heavy chalk build up around the areas and press the board into it to make an impression of the cutout area.
8. Now reinstall all the trim and outlet covers making sure they are flesh. Turn on the power and you are done.
That is how you do basic paneling, it can get a lot more complicated than that if you go for one of the paneling kits mentioned above in the paneling types section. You may need to hire someone to come and install the paneling if you purchase one of the kits. However, the kits do come with instructions so that you can do it yourself if you so choose.
Get creative with your paneling. Don’t go for the average dull, boring, brown stained wood paneling that you see in half of the cheap apartment rentals around town. Go for something nice that fits your home’s style. There are so many choices that if you take the time to look around, you can find some great options for your home that will increase your home’s value and make it beautiful at the same time.
Photo by David Hilowitz, Creative Commons Attribution