Mobile Home Paneling

Mobile home paneling can make your mobile home look dated.  If you are looking for a great way to update the look inside your mobile home, this may be your answer.  Simply replacing the strips on your walls, replacing the walls or updating the walls all together can give your home a new fresh look.  In this article we will discuss a few different options on what to do with your mobile home paneling.

                            Mobile Home Paneling

The paneling used in mobile homes is a very thin drywall type of paneling called VOG. This product is a very cheap product that tends to break quite easily.  It also doesn’t hold up well to moisture.  If you are looking to replace the paneling that is factory installed in your mobile home there are many options that you can use.  

                        Can You Replace Mobile Home Paneling

Yes, you absolutely can replace paneling in your mobile home.  If you are looking for an updated look there are many options.  You could go with a product called Wainscoting (see more on this subject below) half way up the wall.  You could use patterned new paneling or you could just update with actual drywall.

Another option would be to use regular wood or barnwood to make one wall stand out. 

A mobile home living room with wood style mobile home paneling

                                      Mobile Home Paneling: How to Paint 

Painting paneling is a great way to give your room a fresh look without spending a ton of money.  A fresh coat of paint with clean up the walls putting them in tip top shape.  A nice semi-gloss paint will also make the walls easier to clean in the future.  This is especially nice if you have little hands that get put on the walls throughout your home

Mobile home walls, like stick-built home walls, can be constructed with several different materials depending on the manufacturer. 

If you are deciding to replace a mobile home wall there are a number of materials that you can choose from at your local box store building supplier.  These materials would include Gypsum board (drywall), plywood, medium density fiberboard also known as MDF, vinyl covered drywall (this is great for high moisture areas, or paneling. 

A yellow colored room with an open door

Take a trip to your local hardware store and check out all the options available. 

Tip:  Pinterest is also a great app to check for decorating or construction ideas. 


                          How Do I Update My Mobile Home Paneling?

If you are looking for that new modern look then updating the paneling in your home will help accomplish just that.  Follow these steps to get your project started:

First you will want to clean the walls.  Before you start, it’s important to clean the paneling thoroughly to remove any dirt or grease. You can use a mild soap and water solution, or a specialized cleaning product designed for paneling.

Next be sure to remove any trim or molding: If your paneling is covered by trim or molding, remove it carefully using a pry bar and a hammer.

Then be sure to fill in any gaps or holes.  If there are any gaps or holes in the paneling, fill them with spackle or wood filler. Once it’s dry, sand the surface to a smooth texture.  Sanding the surface of the paneling will help to remove any type of buildup.  Sand the surface of the paneling lightly with fine-grit sandpaper. This will help the paint adhere better to the surface.

Priming the paneling shouldn’t be a step that you skip.  Simply apply a coat of primer to the paneling. Then use a brush or roller to apply the primer evenly, making sure to cover all the surface.

Now you are at the fun step, you are ready to paint the paneling.  Once the primer has dried completely, apply a coat of paint to the paneling. Use a brush or roller to apply the paint evenly, making sure to cover all the surface.

Finally, you will want to reinstall any trim or molding.  Once the paint is dry, reinstall any trim or molding that you removed earlier.

A green hallway with a window and brown floor

                What Size Are Mobile Home Walls: Mobile Home Paneling


The size of mobile home walls can vary depending on the manufacturer, model, and age of the home. However, the standard size for mobile home walls is typically 2″ x 3″ or 2″ x 4″ studs, just like in a traditional stick-built home. The walls are usually framed with these wooden studs and then covered with drywall or a similar material. 

Many mobile homes are now available with 2 x 6 walls to give you a sturdier structure to your home. 

One way to tell the size of your mobile home walls is to measure the inside casing of your mobile home windows.  This will tell you how thick your walls are.  

Most mobile home walls are approximately 8 foot tall as well although you can get some homes with vaulted ceilings that offer more room. 

The thickness of the walls can vary depending on the insulation used and whether the home is a single or double wide. In general, mobile home walls are thinner than traditional stick-built homes due to the need for mobility and transportation. However, newer mobile homes often have better insulation and construction methods that improve the overall energy efficiency and strength of the walls.


                                 Why Do Mobile Home Walls Have Strips?

Mobile home wall strips sometimes referred to as batten strips are used to hold two panels together.  It is much easier and cheaper to just place a strip between the two panels rather than to tape and drywall the area. 

Drywall and tape takes time to set up and many times you have to make a few coats to get it set correctly.  This takes extra time and can be expensive.

Another reason mobile home panels have strips is because these units are transported down the road and drywall tape and mud would crack along the seams.  This strip gives the paneling room to move up and down and from side to side. 

Although these strips don’t look the greatest there are ways to cover them up and remove them.  Read our article on Wall Batten Strips. 


                                       How to Install Wainscoting Panels

Wainscoting is a type of paneling that looks like small planks of wood run side by side.  This type of paneling is popular to run part way up a wall.  Most damage to walls comes from putting objects up against a wall.  The drywall that is on mobile home walls is thin, so it is easy to damage.  Protecting your walls with wainscotting is a great alternative to thin drywall.  The best part is it can be placed right overtop of the drywall that you currently have. 

Simply figure out how far up you would like to run the wainscoting and then cut it with a table or circular saw to fit.  Wainscoting can easily be cleaned and painted as well.

If you find that you have large cracks in your drywall or ceilings it may be because your mobile home is not level.  Read our article on Mobile Home Leveling to learn more.  

                  Mobile Home Paneling: Conclusion

Mobile home walls are built cheap.  They are built cheap so that you can save money on the overall cost of your home.  Updating the thin drywall or paneling and replacing it with a product of your choice will help to spruce up your home.  Whether you choose to just paint your mobile home walls or replace them all together be sure to take before and after pictures.  You will be amazed at the difference once you finish your project.  


                      FAQ’s: Mobile Home Paneling

What kind of paneling is used in mobile homes?

Mobile homes often feature interior wall paneling made of materials like vinyl-coated drywall, wood, or a type of composite paneling. The specific type used can vary depending on the manufacturer and model of the mobile home.

What is the best wall covering for a mobile home?

The best wall covering for a mobile home can depend on personal preferences and budget. Many homeowners opt for paint, wallpaper, or modern wallboard to update and personalize their interior spaces. The choice should take into account both aesthetics and functionality.

How do you replace wood paneling in a mobile home?

To replace wood paneling in a mobile home, start by removing the trim and molding, then carefully remove the old paneling. After that, you can install new paneling or choose an alternative wall covering of your choice. Make sure to secure it properly and finish with trim to achieve a polished look.

Can you buy ready-made paneling?

Yes, you can purchase ready-made paneling from various home improvement stores or online retailers. These panels come in different materials, styles, and sizes, making it easier to find an option that suits your mobile home’s interior design and your DIY skills.

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