How to paint knotty pine paneling
Found a home you're in love with but the inside is totally covered in pine paneling? We get it, not everyone likes pine paneling. Even more people don't like it if it's covering wall after wall. Wood wall paneling was very popular from the 1940's (and probably for a while before) through the 1980's where it started to disappear from stick built houses but remained popular in log style homes and cottages.
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One of the cheaper ways to completely change the look is to paint it a lighter color. Painting the paneling white or grey will make for a clean modern look with almost any paneling profile. If you've never done anything like this before it is a fairly easy process. There are a few steps you must take to get the best results possible results. Since knots like to bleed some resin over time so it is important to seal it in to prevent it from surfacing.
Step 1: If there is any type of varnish or stain on the boards it should be lightly sanded off and cleaned so there is a new surface for the primer and paint.
Step 2: Prime it. It is best practice to prime the entire surface to give it a more even texture. Use an oil based or pigmented shellac primer made to prevent bleeding. Use two coats.
Step 3: Apply two coats of your preferred brand of quality interior paint on top and you're all set!
The most important step with this is making sure you get the knots primed well and if there are any cracks/holes that they get filled in. This before and after below shows how you can take a dull paneling to a bright modern farmhouse look.