How To Make Mobile Home Walls Look Like Drywall

When it comes to transforming the look of your mobile home, one popular choice is to create a drywall-like appearance on your walls.

This approach not only adds visual appeal but also can make your space feel more like a traditional home.

A mobile home with a very modern design

No worries, you can achieve this even without actual drywall!

There are different methods to accomplish this. You can use textured paint, paneling, or special wall coverings.

In the following sections, we'll guide you through a step-by-step process tailored for mobile home interiors, helping you achieve that drywall look and feel.

Understanding Mobile Home Walls

Mobile home walls are different from traditional drywall found in site-built homes.

In mobile homes, you'll often find walls made of VOG (Vinyl-On-Gypsum) or POG (Paper-On-Gypsum).

These wall materials are lightweight and more affordable, which is crucial for the construction of a mobile home.

VOG panels are typically 3/8 inch thick and have a vinyl coating on one side, which gives them a finished appearance and makes them easier to clean.

POG panels are similar but have a paper coating instead of vinyl.

Both types of walls are attached to the wall studs with batten strips, which cover the seams between the panels.

What is Drywall?

Drywall, also known as plasterboard or gypsum board, is a building material used to create walls and ceilings in your home.

It's a popular choice because it's affordable, lightweight, and easy to work with.

When you're considering making your mobile home walls look like drywall, it's essential to understand what drywall is and why it's so popular.

Drywall panels are made from gypsum, which is a naturally occurring mineral.

The gypsum is mixed with water and pressed between two sheets of thick paper to create durable panels.

These panels come in various thicknesses, typically ranging from 1/4-inch to 5/8-inch, depending on your needs and preferences.

One of the main benefits of drywall is its smooth, seamless appearance. Once the drywall panels are installed, the joints between the panels are filled with a compound called joint compound.

This substance helps create a smooth and even surface, hiding any imperfections where the panels meet.

After the joint compound is applied, your walls are ready for painting, which gives your mobile home interior an attractive, professional finish.

In comparison to other wall materials, drywall is relatively easy to install and repair.

If your drywall gets damaged, you can usually fix the problem without having to replace the entire panel.

This makes drywall a versatile and resilient choice for your mobile home walls.

Materials Needed

To make your mobile home walls look like drywall, you'll need a few essential materials.

Start by gathering the necessary tools and supplies so that you can achieve a smooth, professional finish.

First, you'll need some joint compound. Joint compound is used to fill and smooth out the seams between panel sections and create a uniform surface.

View this DAP wallboard joint compound on Amazon.

Next, you'll need drywall tape. This helps to reinforce the joints and prevent the joint compound from cracking.

There are different types of drywall tape available, such as paper tape or fiberglass mesh tape. Choose the one that best suits your needs and skill level.

Check out this drywall joint tape on Amazon.

Another important material is drywall primer. Applying a primer to your walls ensures that your paint adheres properly and provides a smooth, even surface for your final paint color.

Get this Zinsser drywall primer on Amazon.

To help you achieve a professional finish, you'll also need the following tools:

  • putty knife for applying joint compound
  • taping knife to smooth and even out the joint compound
  • sanding block or pole sander with sandpaper, for smoothing out the dried joint compound
  • roller or paintbrush for applying primer and paint

Preparation of Mobile Home Walls

Before you start transforming your mobile home walls to look like drywall, it's essential to properly prepare the surface.

This section will guide you through the cleaning and priming process.


To begin, you'll want to thoroughly clean the walls. Dirt, grease, and other debris can interfere with paint adhesion and result in an uneven finish.

Follow these steps for effective cleaning:

  1. Remove any furniture or decorations near the walls.
  2. Use a vacuum cleaner or a soft-bristle broom to remove dust and cobwebs.
  3. Mix a mild soap solution by combining warm water and a few drops of dish soap in a bucket.
  4. Dampen a soft cloth or sponge with the soap solution and gently scrub the walls in a circular motion.
  5. Rinse the walls with clean water using a clean cloth or sponge to avoid leaving any residue.
  6. Allow the walls to completely dry before moving on to the priming stage.


Priming is an essential step in achieving a smooth, professional-looking finish on your walls.

A good primer will help the paint adhere to the surface and prevent discoloration.

Keep these tips in mind when priming your mobile home walls:

1. High-quality primer

Choose a high-quality primer specifically designed for the type of surface you're working with, such as wood paneling or vinyl-coated drywall.

2. Use a Brush or Roller

Use a brush or roller, depending on your preference and the size of the area you're priming.

Brushes are better for small or tight spaces, while rollers are more efficient for larger areas.

Apply the primer in even strokes, working in the same direction as the surface's grain. This will minimize the visibility of brush or roller marks.

3. Dry Thoroughly

Allow the primer to dry completely according to the manufacturer's instructions.

This may take anywhere from a few hours to a full day, depending on the product and environmental conditions.

Once the primer is dry, inspect the walls for any uneven areas or spots you might have missed. Lightly sand these areas and touch them up with primer as needed.

Drywall Installation Process

Cutting the Drywall

To start the process, you'll need to measure and cut the drywall to fit the walls of your mobile home.

Use a measuring tape to determine the dimensions of each wall and transfer these measurements onto your drywall panels.

Cut the drywall using a straight edge and a utility knife. You may need to score the surface a few times before it can be snapped cleanly along the cut.

Hanging the Drywall

Once you have cut the drywall panels to the right size, you can begin hanging them on your mobile home walls. You'll need:

  • A drill
  • Drywall screws (1-1/4" or 1-5/8" long)
  • A screwdriver bit or drywall screw setter

Start at the top corner of one wall and work your way down, attaching each panel to the wall studs.

Make sure the edges of the panels are tightly butted together with no gaps.

Drive the screws about every 8 inches along the studs, keeping them at least 3/8 inches from the edge of the drywall panels.

Don't forget to cut out any necessary openings for outlets, switches, and vents as you hang the panels.

Applying Joint Compound

Once your drywall is hung, it's time to apply joint compound to the seams and screw holes. You'll need:

  • Joint compound (also known as mud)
  • A 6" and a 12" taping knife
  • Paper or fiberglass drywall tape

Begin by filling the screw holes with compound using the 6" knife. Next, apply a thin layer of joint compound along the seams between panels.

Place the drywall tape over the wet joint compound, centering it on the seam.

Press the tape into the compound using your taping knife and smoothly removing any excess compound.

Apply a second layer of joint compound over the taped seams with your 12" knife, feathering the edges to blend with the surrounding surface.

Allow the compound to dry for 24 hours before moving on to the next step.


The final step in making your mobile home walls look like drywall is sanding. You'll need:

  • A sanding block or pole sander
  • Fine-grit sandpaper (120 or 150-grit)
  • A dust mask and eye protection

Start by lightly sanding the dried joint compound to create a smooth, blended surface.

Be careful not to sand too deep or you may damage the drywall tape beneath.

Always wear a dust mask and eye protection when sanding, as the drywall dust can be harmful if inhaled or irritating to your eyes.

Once you've finished sanding, your mobile home walls will have a smooth, drywall-like appearance.

They should now be ready for painting or applying any other finishing touches you have planned.

Finishing Touches

Now that you have your mobile home walls looking like drywall, it's time to apply the finishing touches.

Wooden cabinets, white painted walls, and wooden flooring of a modern mobile home

In this section, we will cover painting and decorating tips to enhance the appearance of your new walls.


After you've made your mobile home walls resemble drywall, it's time to paint them.

Start by selecting the right type of paint for your wall material; for example, use a quality latex paint that works well on gypsum.

Ensure the surface is clean and dry before painting.

Apply a primer to the wall first to help the paint adhere better and to provide a consistent base color.

Once the primer is dry, apply a minimum of two coats of paint, allowing each coat to dry completely before applying the next one.

Using a roller or brush, make sure to apply the paint evenly and with the proper technique to avoid leaving streaks or marks on the wall.


With your freshly painted walls, it's now time to decorate them and make your mobile home feel more like a traditional house.

Consider using the following ideas:

  • Add artwork, photos, or mirrors to enhance walls and add depth.
  • Install shelves for display or functional purposes.
  • Use wall-mounted lights for ambiance and feature highlighting.
  • Use decals or stickers for simple, no-drill decoration.
  • Use curtains or panels to divide spaces or hide unattractive areas.

By implementing these finishing touches, your mobile home walls will not only look like drywall, but they will also reflect your style and make your space feel more inviting and comfortable.

Recap: Easy Drywall DIY

Remember to carefully prepare your walls by removing any wallpaper or rough spots and filling in any gaps or cracks.

Once you've completed this step, you can apply a quality primer to create a solid base for your paint.

Then, choose a high-quality paint specifically designed for mobile home walls to ensure a durable and long-lasting finish.

Don't forget that small details, such as proper taping and finishing of joints, can make a significant impact on the overall appearance of your walls.

Take your time to perfect these skills, and you'll be well on your way to achieving a beautiful drywall-like finish in your mobile home.

For more information on mobile homes, check out these other articles:

How to Install Mobile Home Anchors: A Beginner’s Guide

Types Of Mobile Home Foundations: Which One Is Right For You?

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