As soon as we were in escrow the hubby and I started mapping out all the things we wanted to do to the house when it was ours; it was definitely move-in ready but it just needed a few touches of our very own! Since we plan on entertaining a lot (we already had an impromptu game night two days after we moved in), we thought we would start with the living room. When the hubby and I first saw the wood paneling in the living room of our new home we considered leaving it as-is, but within about a week of trying to figure out how we would decorate a room with wood paneling we looked up some tutorials and decided we would paint it, which was way more cost effective then ripping it out. Painting wood paneling sounds hard, but in fact although time consuming (waiting for the paint to dry), it's pretty easy to do. The day after we received our keys we officially became Do-It-Yourselfers and painted the paneling and the whole living room ourselves and we're so glad we did, now our living looks bright and big! Here is how we did it.
We cleaned the wood paneling with TSP spray, then filled in all the holes and cracks with caulking. We removed all the wall plates, put down a drop cloth and secured it with painters tape. We did not tape off the ceiling because we were having crown moulding installed the next day, but we do suggest taping off the ceiling prior to painting.
We used a roller to apply a thin coat of oil-based primer to the paneling and since our wood paneling has grooves we also used a paint brush to primer those grooves.
Once the primer was dry, we applied a thin even coat of latex paint with a paint brush to the grooves and then used a roller for the entire wall.
Once our first coat of latex paint was dry, we applied one more coat of paint for a flawless look. Now we were ready for crown moulding. Stay tuned...