How Do You Remove Wood Paneling? Tips for the Interior Painter in Boulder County
Posted Feb 26, 2015
Wood paneling in your home is one of those things that, when it’s good, is really good! And, when it’s bad, it’s really bad. It can either be a unique, classy aspect of your home’s design or a reminder that the styles of the 1980s are still lurking.
If you have the outdated variety in your home, have you ever wondered how exactly to tear down your paneling, or if you even can at all? The truth is, when you approach the project carefully and with enough time to do it well, it can not only be done, but it can be a fairly straightforward process.
Tearing Down Paneling - Refresh and Rethink Your Interior Design!
First, as a side note, it’s important to determine exactly what is under your paneling. Remove your first piece in as inconspicuous a place as possible to make sure that useable sheetrock is behind it. Once this is confirmed you can get to work on the rest of the process:
- Remove any molding – Whether it be crown molding or baseboards, look out for trim around the perimeter of your paneling that could be damaged in the demolition process. Making sure all of this is out of the way also tends to streamline the process!
- If at first you don’t succeed, pry, pry again (sorry, we couldn’t resist) – Work the flat end of your crowbar behind the top corner of your first piece of paneling and then systematically pry from top to bottom, essentially peeling the boards free from the wall. Even though this might feel like a slower process than simply tearing them off as fast as possible, this more systematic method will keep your worksite neater and easier to clean up. It also will help you to avoid the frustration of little, splintered fragments of wood clinging to your walls after the paneling snaps.
- Remove nails as needed – If you have a few stragglers left, pry them out now.
- Sand and prep – Regardless of whether adhesive residue is left behind, it’s a good idea in general to sand your walls lightly as a way to prepare the surface for the fresh coat of paint (or whatever sort of covering you have planned) to come. And remember, if you are painting, be sure to fill any nail holes with spackle and a coat of primer.
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