How To Paint Wood Paneling

calander Jan 19 , 2023 user-icon Nash Painting

Painting wood paneling can be a great way to spruce up your home. Whether you’re looking for an updated look or just want to freshen up the space, it’s easy and affordable when done right. However, painting wood paneling is not as simple as slapping on some paint – there are several steps involved in order to ensure that your project turns out beautifully! In this blog post, we'll cover all of the essentials from preparing the wood paneling to choosing paint colors and finishes before finally getting into painting itself. We'll also discuss how best to care for painted wood paneling so that it stays beautiful for years down the road.

Table of Contents:

  • Preparing the Wood Paneling

  • Choosing Paint Colors and Finishes

  • Painting Wood Paneling

  • Caring for Painted Wood Paneling

  • FAQs in Relation to Painting Wood Paneling
    • What kind of paint do you use on wood paneling?

    • Can you paint directly over wood paneling?

    • Can you paint wood paneling without sanding?

    • How do you paint paneling with grooves?

  • Conclusion

Preparing the Wood Paneling

Before you even start, it is important to properly prepare the surface. This will ensure that the paint adheres well and lasts longer.

Cleaning the Surface

The first step in preparing wood paneling for painting is to clean it thoroughly. This can be done with a mild soap and water solution or a specialized cleaner designed for wood surfaces. Make sure to remove any dirt, dust, or debris from the surface before proceeding with sanding or priming.

Sanding the Surface

Once the surface has been cleaned, use fine-grit sandpaper to lightly sand down any rough spots on the paneling. Sand in one direction only and avoid applying too much pressure as this could damage the wood’s finish. After sanding, wipe away any excess dust with a damp cloth before moving onto priming.


Applying primer is an essential step as it helps create an even base coat for your paint color of choice and also provides extra protection against moisture damage over time. Use a brush or roller specifically designed for use on wood surfaces when applying primer and make sure to cover all areas evenly without leaving behind streaks or gaps in coverage. Allow ample drying time between coats if necessary according to manufacturer instructions before beginning your final layer of paint.

Once the wood paneling is properly prepped, it's time to move on to selecting colors and finishes that will give your walls a beautiful finish.

Painting wood paneling? Don't forget the 3 Ps: Prepare, Prime & Paint. Follow these steps for a smooth finish that will last. #DIYpainting

Choosing Paint Colors and Finishes

When it comes to choosing paint colors and finishes for wood paneling, there are a few important considerations. Selecting the right color palette is key to creating a cohesive look that complements your home’s decor. Consider using neutral shades such as whites, beiges, or grays for a timeless look that won’t go out of style. You can also add pops of color with accent walls or furniture pieces if you want something more vibrant.

Deciding on sheen level is another factor to consider when painting wood paneling. A higher sheen level will create a glossy finish that reflects light well but may show imperfections in the surface more easily than lower sheens like matte or eggshell do. On the other hand, low-sheen paints tend to hide imperfections better but don't reflect light as much as high-sheen paints.

When it comes to painting wood paneling, the right color palette and sheen level can make all the difference. Get creative with your look - try whites, beiges or grays for a timeless feel or add pops of color with accent walls. #PaintingMadeEasy

Painting Wood Paneling

Applying paint evenly and smoothly is key to achieving a beautiful finish.

  • Start by using a brush or roller for edges and corners to ensure that all areas are covered.
  • When applying the first coat of paint, use long strokes in one direction so that there are no visible lines or streaks on the surface. Make sure to apply enough pressure when painting so that the paint does not drip down onto other surfaces or create uneven patches. Allow each coat to dry completely before moving on to the next step.
  • Using proper tools is essential when painting wood paneling as this will help you achieve an even finish without any visible lines or streaks. Brushes are great for smaller areas such as edges and corners while rollers work best for larger flat surfaces like walls and ceilings. When using brushes make sure they have soft bristles so they don’t leave any marks behind, and while rolling make sure you overlap slightly each time you go over a section in order to get full coverage with fewer coats needed overall.
  • Adding a second coat of paint may also be necessary if you want more coverage, or if there are still some thin spots after the first coat has dried completely. Again, use long strokes in one direction when applying this layer of paint and allow it plenty of time to dry before smoothing any imperfections with sandpaper if needed.

Key Takeaway: Painting wood paneling is achievable with the right preparation and tools, such as brushes for edges and corners, rollers for flat surfaces, and a second coat of paint if needed. Regularly clean with a mild soapy water solution to maintain its appearance over time.

Caring for Painted Wood Paneling

Caring for painted wood paneling is essential to maintain its beauty and luster. Cleaning regularly with a mild soap and water solution is the best way to keep your paneling looking great. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasives when cleaning, as these can damage the paint finish. Instead, use a soft cloth or sponge with warm soapy water to gently clean away dirt and dust buildup.

Touch up areas as needed in order to maintain the look of your painted wood paneling over time. If you notice any chips or scratches in the paint, fill them in with matching paint before they become more noticeable. You may also want to apply a fresh coat of sealant every few years to protect against fading and wear-and-tear from everyday use.

When it comes time for major repairs such as replacing damaged panels, be sure that you hire an experienced professional who specializes in painting wood paneling for best results. They will have access to high quality paints that are designed specifically for this type of material and will be able to ensure that all repairs blend seamlessly into existing finishes without creating visible lines or seams between old and new materials.

FAQs in Relation to Painting Wood Paneling

What kind of paint do you use on wood paneling?

We use high-quality, water-based paints for wood paneling. Our paints are designed to provide superior adhesion and durability while also providing a beautiful finish that will last for years. We take great care in prepping the surface of the wood before painting to ensure proper coverage and longevity of our work. Additionally, we use top quality brushes and rollers to ensure an even application of paint on your wood paneling. With our attention to detail, you can rest assured that your wood paneling will look beautiful for many years.

Can you paint directly over wood paneling?

Yes, you can paint directly over wood paneling. However, it is important to properly prepare the surface first in order to ensure a quality finish. This includes sanding down any rough edges and filling in any gaps or cracks with spackle or putty. Additionally, if the wood paneling has been previously painted, it should be lightly sanded and wiped down before applying a new coat of paint. Taking these steps will help ensure that your painting project turns out looking great.

Can you paint wood paneling without sanding?

Yes, it is possible to paint wood paneling without sanding. However, the results may not be as good as if you had sanded the surface first. Sanding helps to create a smoother finish and ensures that the paint adheres better to the surface of the wood paneling. Additionally, primers are available that can help with adhesion even when sanding has not been done prior to painting. It is important to take extra care when painting over wood paneling without sanding in order to achieve optimal results.

How do you paint paneling with grooves?

Painting paneling with grooves requires a few extra steps to ensure a smooth, even finish. First, use sandpaper or steel wool to lightly scuff the surface of the paneling and then vacuum away any dust created. Next, apply a coat of primer specifically designed for wood surfaces and allow it to dry completely before moving on. Finally, apply two coats of paint using either a brush or roller in thin layers allowing each layer to dry thoroughly between applications. This will help create an even finish without leaving excess paint in the grooves.


With the right preparation, paint colors and finishes, and proper care after painting, you can enjoy beautiful painted wood paneling for years to come. If you're looking for professional help with painting wood paneling in Nashville, reach out to our team of experienced painters today! We'll make sure that your project is done right.