13 answers

Painting Paneling

I have a room with paneling that I would like to paint, but I would like to somehow fill in the lines on the paneling first so that when I paint it, you can't tell that it was paneling...it will just look like regular sheetrock. Has anyone successfully done this? How did you do it?

What can I do next?

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My mom and I did it but it is a lot of work. We used I think it is called spackle and filled in each line and then we went over the rest of the wall and made it look like the wall was rough, not as easy to paint but it looked like a regular wall and we got lots of compliments on it I loved it. Good luck!!

1 mom found this helpful

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My mom and I did it but it is a lot of work. We used I think it is called spackle and filled in each line and then we went over the rest of the wall and made it look like the wall was rough, not as easy to paint but it looked like a regular wall and we got lots of compliments on it I loved it. Good luck!!

1 mom found this helpful

Honestly, whatever you use to fill in the grooves will eventually fail. Also, even though the grooves will be filled in it will still look like paneling. If you use spackling it will crack after a while. The paneling is more flexible than sheetrock and the spackeling is more brittle. So it will eventually crack & fall out of the grooves. Caulk is more flexible but still shows the grooves somewhat.

So, my recommendation is to just paint it. Oh, be sure to use a few coats of primer & to clean it REALLY well before painting. It is worth the extra time & ends up costing less in the long run.

1 mom found this helpful

You need to coat the walls with joint compound. You buy it in big tubs at the hardware store and smooth it on with special sheetrock tools. Since you have no experience with this, you might want to hire a painter or sheetrock guy to do it. You'll either have to sand it smooth or texture it -- and that can be a big mess. I know a guy who did this exact project at my mother's house and he did a great job. Email me if you would like his number.

1 mom found this helpful

We have painted paneling, so you can still see the lines, and get compliments all the time! People think it's unique, I guess.

PS. Son said he would be concerned that the wall mud or sheet rock mud wouldn't hold. He said you could lightly sand the paneling, prime it and paint it the groves would still show though. Have to remove it to get rid of the grooves.Sorry I thought my way would work :(

Might be cool to paint it though and use the grooves as a contrast color stripe

Good Morning JO, Having two son's that are in or have been in construction, what comes to my mind is getting some spackling compound or Sheet Rock mud.
Use a putty knife to smooth it in the seams. Then let it dry and sand it lightly. You might need to fill in some places and re dry sand again. With sheet rock mud you can also use a damp sponge to clean it off the other paneling or smooth it out.
It should work. I will call our youngest son later to make sure and write you back.

God Bless you
K. Nana of 5

Use joint compound/"sheet rock mud" to float the wall. It is a lot of work to do a whole room of walls, but not that difficult to do and should work great! Good luck!

Hi, I haven't done this, but my Mom did something very similar years ago. She filled in the lines on the paneling (I think with spackle or something like it) to get a smooth surface and then she wallpapered over it. I'd think you could get the same effect painting as well. You could check at a painting store to see what kind of "filler" product is best for this. 'Hope this helps!

we've painted paneling, using just paint & also using primer first. With just paint, the wood does bleed thru in about a year...gives it a distressed look, but not always clean looking.

Using primer provides a much nicer, cleaner look.

& as for spackling or mudding, our decision not to use it was based on the fact that wood paneling...like all woods... expands/contracts with temp changes. Our concern was that the filler would not be stable. Just painting the paneling looked fine, & made the rooms look updated & fresh. Good Luck.

I bought the wallpaper that you can paint if you so desire

and you cannot tell it was paneling...also I did not paint.

Really brighten the room up. L.H.

We paint the paneling in rentals we buy all the time... don't really think it's necessary to fill in the lines to get a nice look. And if anything you fill the lines with will eventually crack, that will look way worse than just painting the paneling. I would google painting paneling and see what the experts say. The DIY or HGTV websites probably have info on this.

Just buy some spackle and a large and small putty knife, and some sanding blocks at home depot, lowe's or walmart. Fill in the cracks, smooth as much as possible as you fill them in and let it dry. Once it is dry sand it with the sanding block, you can wet sand and not get all the dust, get the walls as smooth as you want and paint. My mom has a trailer and you wouldn't know her walls had paneling on them. The spackle won't crack if you let it dry and sand it. If you have questions you can email me at ____@____.com. I have a hubby with experience in construction who knows other shortcuts!! Have fun!

i have not done it - i know it can be done because i had googled it when i was decorating my sons bedroom. we live in a n old trailer and it has that panelling all through it, we have wall papered over most of it very successfully and you could put a plain wallpaper over and then paint that, or just use a filling compound in the joins then sand smooth - i think it would be really time consuming which is why i used wallpaper

I would think joint compound would do it but it would take an awful long time and work to fill all of that...wonder if you could somehow load it in something like a caulk gun and then just scrape excess off???

I would ask someone at Home Depot/Lowe's/Menard's what they think...you will also need to prime the walls before you paint.

Good luck!

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