Asked on Apr 02, 2015

How to fix gaps in wood paneling

Donna Arsenault
by Donna Arsenault
I have this wood strip paneling in an entrance. There are some gaps in between that I would like to fill and then paint. Not in the budget to remove and/or replace just now. I kinda like it, it was in place when we bought and moved was already painted and the previous owner has left all the paint and has it tagged. What would be the best product to use? Thanks in advance.
  11 answers
  • Darla Darla on Apr 02, 2015
    Get some heavy duty caulk rated for outdoor use, and paint over it.
  • CK CK on Apr 02, 2015
    This appears to be original bead board paneling..hence the gaps ;-) I'd get regular acrylic caulking, fill the gaps, then repaint. Make sure the caulking says "paintable". Another aspect to look for on the caulking you buy is if it says "flexible". That'll allow it to stay in the gaps even with any shifting that may occur with dry/wet seasons. Glad to hear you like the paneling and are going to keep it :-)
  • Hot air Hot air on Apr 03, 2015
    paintable wood filler not that expensive my husband wood worker
  • Teresa Martin Teresa Martin on Apr 03, 2015
    Get a can of crack filler. Works great. I used drywall putty on my mobile home to make the wall look more like drywall
  • D & K D & K on Apr 03, 2015
    If these are all interior walls, the best thing to use is simply a painter's caulk. You can smooth it out with your finger or a damp sponge and is paint ready in about 30 minutes. Both DAP and Red Devil make a great painter's caulk and they cost you about $2.50 a tube at your local hardware or home improvement store. I go through a case a month. If any of the walls are exterior you'll need to use a paintable siliconized acrylic latex caulk. Only slightly more expensive but just as easy to use.
  • Donna Arsenault Donna Arsenault on Apr 03, 2015
    Thanks folks. This is an interior wall. Dennis....would I have to prep in any way? Or just apply caulk,let dry and then paint. This paint is less than a year old. House was newly painted before we moved in by owner.
    • D & K D & K on Apr 04, 2015
      @Donna Arsenault You wouldn't have to do any other prep work. Paint adheres very well to painter caulk, hence the reason it' was developed. No need to for additional priming, simply apply it, smooth it over, let it set and paint away. The area of Texas where I operate my service and where I live has hundreds of Craftsman styled houses that make use of bead board and the 110 style siding as you have. What simply happens is over time the wood begins to shrink leaving these separations because all the natural moisture has dissipated. You don't want to use a wood putty that hardens because any slight swelling and contractions caused by humidity changes would eventually cause it to crack out or cause the wood to buckle and pull loose from the walls. Using painters caulk is the way to go.
  • Cheryl Cheryl on Apr 04, 2015
    I just fixed my bathroom panelling with caulking and paint. Super easy fix!
  • Diana Deiley Diana Deiley on May 17, 2016
    Easy peasy.......interior painter's caulk. I use it all the time.
  • Les and Gina Les and Gina on May 18, 2016
    A tube of latex caulk and a wet sponge run a bead down the seam and go back over it with the wet sponge wait for it to dry and paint it.
  • Karen Karen on Mar 19, 2017

    I have a similar type of paneling in one room of my home. When I purchased it 3 months ago it had only one small crack, this has now more than doubled in size and I am seeing it in several panels all over the room-vertically. A contractor said my foundation was fine. Ideas??? Suggestions? My home about 50 yrs old, all brick with new windows and roof.

    • Donna Arsenault Donna Arsenault on Mar 20, 2017

      Hi Karen, I filled the cracks with paintable caulking and used the corner edge of a spatula to smooth it out and still keep the indentation in the panel. Once dried I painted. That was about 3 months ago. So far so good. The painter I got advice from said because the house is old, there may be some minor contraction and expansion with the cooler weather. The silicone caulking that i used should be able to accommodate that.

  • Shannon Shannon on Mar 22, 2019

    Hi, Dennis and Donna. Donna, how’s the caulk holding up? I’m thinking of taking Dennis’s advice. Dennis, the spaces between my panels is about the width of my index finger. I’m reading that Ted Devil applies thinly. Do you have any thoughts? Thanks!