How Thick Is Wall Paneling? [6 Types Analyzed]

Wooden wall paneling and white framed sliding windows, How Thick Is Wall Paneling? [6 Types Analyzed]You’ve decided to put up wall paneling in one or more rooms in your home. But before you start you want to know a few things. And one of those questions you want answered is how thick is wall paneling?

Here are some of the common types of wall paneling and their respective thicknesses:

  • Plywood, 1/2″-3/4″ thick
  • MDF Paneling, 1/4″ thick
  • Bead Board Paneling, 1/4″ thick
  • Reclaimed Wood Paneling, 1/2″-1″ thick
  • Shiplap Paneling, 3/8″ – 1″ thick
  • Faux Brick – 1/4″ thick

We’ll touch briefly on each of these paneling types and how the thickness can affect a remodeling project in the post below.

Common Types Of Paneling

You’ve entered into a home decorating project and have decided you want paneling in one of your rooms. There are many reasons for choosing paneling, from simple design decisions to durability. Nowadays, much of the paneling available comes in great pre-done finishes which can take away the step of the painting. From faux brick to reclaimed wood, paneling is no longer just the knotty pine of the 1960s.

Plywood And MDF Paneling

Solid Plywood is certainly a paneling of choice, but typically plywood with a laminate or hardwood veneer is used to give the feeling of hardwood walls. Plywood and veneers come in thicknesses of 1/2″ – 3/4″ thick. The thinner ones will work best with trims around doors and windows.

MDF is a composite wood that is a super low-cost solution. If you’re building a workshop or renovating on the cheap, this could be a choice for you. Many people are now painting or varnishing it for a designerly look. It typically runs about 1/4″ thick.

Beadboard Paneling

Beadboard which is reminiscent of farmhouses of yesteryear is a paneling style that never loses its luster. Available in plywood versions, PVC versions, and pre-painted versions, this is a flexible and easy material to use in your home. Typically beadboard averages around 1/4″ in thickness.

Reclaimed Wood And Shiplap Paneling

Rustic design and home design shows have made the use of an accent wall in reclaimed wood or a dining room done in shiplap incredibly popular for the home interior. True hardwood boards, like original shiplap, are often as much as an inch thick. You’ll have to take this into consideration when butting up against door trim and window trim and plan accordingly.

Faux Brick Paneling

You can now buy panels that look like actual bricks but are actually a mold-resistant and stain-resistant acrylic coated wood paneling. These panels, like most of the other modern fabricated panels, typically run about 1/4″ thick.

What To Do About Seams In Paneling?

Because paneling has seams, that can negate the effect of the insulation in the walls. Many people will still put up sheetrock between the insulation and the paneling, but you still might not want those seams to show. Or, if you’re using a thicker paneling, you may not have the space for both insulation and interior paneling. What can you do about the seams?

How Do You Hide Paneling Seams?

One trick is to paint a stripe on the sheetrock behind the paneling to match the color created by the groove in the paneling. This way, if you do have a small gap, you won’t be able to tell.

With beadboard, if you line up your panels at the start and end of a “bead” section it will look pretty seamless.

If you’re painting your paneling, then use caulk to fill in the grooves so the transitions are seamless.

But mostly it’s a matter of measuring twice and cutting once and getting your paneling joints to kiss as tightly as possible.

Can You Fill In Paneling Grooves?

If you want your paneling to be seamless and painted one color like drywall, you can take the same approach as with drywall. Remove all of your trim first. Prime your paneling. Then, using mesh drywall tape, tape over the seams.

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Once taped over, use drywall mud and a small paint roller and go over the seams until the surface is smooth and connected like actual drywall.

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Let the seam dry completely, sand till smooth, then paint the entire paneled wall in the color of your choice. When dry, reattach your trim work.

What Is The Best Adhesive For Paneling?

There are many adhesives on the market made specifically for paneling. They often come in tubes resembling caulk tubes, and some folks even use caulk as their general adhesive for paneling.

Liquid Nails makes a product specifically for adhering paneling. Be sure and look for where it says paneling on the tube. It bonds quickly and is like an extra set of hands to hold the paneling in place until you can get your nails in.

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Loctite Construction Adhesive is another popular choice for affixing paneling. It has a low price point and is useful for a variety of projects.

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Gorilla Max Strength Construction Adhesive is super strong, dries clear, and is 100% waterproof, making it a great choice for bathroom and kitchen applications. It bonds a number of different materials and can also be used for gap filling between your paneling sheets. The instant grab stickiness makes it easy to get your nails tacked in place to hold it until completely dry.

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We hope you have fun with your paneling project and that we’ve managed to answer some of your questions about paneling thicknesses and types. If you liked this post, be sure to check out these others:

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