Tips on How to Install Custom Wainscoting

Wainscoting is a type of paneling that is installed in the interior walls of a room, house, or building. It was originally thought of to provide insulation for buildings that were made of stone. Nowadays, it is more commonly used to beautify and decorate homes. It is usually made of wood; but as the construction industry grows more modern, a lot of the materials are now being made out of plastic.


The first thing you need to do when installing your own custom wainscoting is to prepare the room that you are going to work on. Remove all the furniture, carpeting, wall decorations, and all of your other valuable items. You should also remove the mouldings that are installed in your walls. Be very careful in removing these moldings if you want to reuse them later on; if they are even slightly cracked, they will no longer look as well as they used to.

Also, look for all the outlets in the room and remove the covers; these covers will be reinstalled after the wainscoting has been finished. After clearing the room, make a guideline that you will use to align the panels that you are going to install. Measure the length of the panels that you bought and add half an inch. The result would be the height of your guideline. Adding the half an inch would make sure that your wainscoting won’t hit the floor even if the floor is not totally even. Run the guideline through all the walls that you want to install your wainscoting on; for most rooms, this would mean around the entire room.

Now that the room is clear, you can start installing your wainscoting. It is usually best to start from one corner and work your way around. Get one piece of the paneling boards that you bought and place it on the wall. If it is covering any wall outlets, simply cut a hole on the paneling board before you nail it to the wall. Once you have made any necessary adjustments or holes to the panel, apply construction glue on the back side. Align its top level with the guide that you made previously then press it up against the wall. Hold it firmly against the wall until the glue dries and holds the panel steady. You can then hold the panel more securely in place with the use of paneling nails or screws. Repeat this same procedure for the rest of the panels until you cover the entire room.

Sometimes, when you get to the corners, a full panel will be too big to cover the remaining space. Again, you are going to have to cut the panel to make it fit. Once all the panels are installed, you now have a new wainscoting. Reinstall your outlet covers and your moldings, and bring back your furniture.