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Can You Install Shiplap Over Popcorn Ceiling?

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The popularity of shiplap has increased in recent years due to its rustic look and the fact that it is a total breeze to install.

The shiplap boards can be applied over a popcorn ceiling without an issue. Simply ensure it is clean and free of debris or dust before beginning. You will need screws, in addition, to secure planks to the ceiling.

Moreover, shiplap is a great choice for bathrooms, bedrooms, living rooms, and other areas where you want a nautical, industrial, or country look. It can also be painted or stained to match your decor. Installation is possible either on walls or ceiling.

Can You Install Shiplap Over Popcorn Ceiling?

How to Install Shiplap Over Popcorn Ceiling

Installing shiplap on your ceiling is relatively easy. The supplies you will need include:

  • Shiplap planks
  • Primer
  • Cordless drill
  • Circular saw
  • Tape measure
  • Level, Chalk line
  • Stud finder
  • Screws
  • Caulk
  • Nail gun
  • Putty Knife
  • Hole Cutter
  • Paint
  • Painter’s tape

1. Clean Ceiling

To clean the popcorn ceiling before installing shiplap, use a vacuum cleaner or a broom to remove all of the dust and debris. If there is any grease or dirt on the ceiling, use a degreaser or detergent to clean it.

Additionally, remove hanging fixtures from your ceiling for easy installation of shiplap panels.

2. Test for Joists

Ceiling joists are the horizontal beams that support the weight of a ceiling. They are

To determine the location of joists, use a stud finder. The joists are the wooden beams that support your ceiling.

Tavool Stud Finder Sensor Wall Scanner - 4 in 1 Electronic Stud Sensor Beam Finders Wall Detector Center Finding with LCD Display for Wood AC Wire Metal Studs Joist Detection

Once you have located the joists, mark them with a pencil so you will know where to drill the screws.

3. Secure Shiplap

Attach shiplap boards to the ceiling with screws. The screws should be placed every 8 to 12 inches.

If you are installing a shiplap on a wall, use a level to ensure the boards are straight.

4. Mark Ceiling for Shiplap

Once you have determined, where the ceiling studs are, you can begin marking the ceiling for shiplap installation. Use a level and a tape measure to mark the horizontal and vertical lines for the shiplap. If you are installing shiplap on an accent wall, you will only need to mark the ceiling for one-half of the wall.

4. If painting, apply Primer beforehand

If you are planning to paint the shiplap, it is a good idea to apply a of primer before installing the boards. This way, all boards will be painted properly afterwards.

The best primer for this job I believe is Kilz Original.

KILZ Original Flat White Oil-Based Primer and Sealer For All Surfaces 1 qt.
NOTE: You don't prime them If you are planning to only stain your boards.

5. Install the shiplap boards

Once the ceiling is clean and primed, you can start installing the shiplap boards. If you are using a pre-made shiplap kit, follow the instructions that come with it. If you are making your own shiplap, simply measure and cut the boards to fit the desired area. Nail or screw the boards in place, as desired.

6. Seal all seams

Once the boards are in place, use caulk to seal all the seams. This will help to prevent moisture damage and will also make the installation look neater.

7. Paint or stain the shiplap

Once the installation is complete, you can paint or stain the shiplap to match your decor. Staining is possible also in step 4 if you feel it’s more convenient.

You can use a screw drawer to remove the paint between the lines of the shiplap board while the paint it still wet, for a neat look.

PRO TIP: If you're not painting the wall use painter's tape to protect the edges of the wall from getting messy while painting shiplap boards.

8. Hang Fixtures

Now that the shiplap is installed, you can start hanging fans, chandeliers, and other decorations. The shiplap adds a rustic charm that will enhance any space. Enjoy your new beautiful shiplap wall!

Which way should shiplap run on a ceiling?

We recommend you install shiplap perpedicularly to the lines on your ceiling as it will help add more interest and style. Additionally, it helps to screw nails for a strong hold.

Alternatively, the way in which shiplap runs on a ceiling will depend on the look you are going for. There are two main options:

  • horizontal
  • vertical

Horizontal boards create a more rustic, country look, while vertical boards give a more modern, polished appearance. Choose the direction that best suits your style and taste.

PRO TIP: Installing shiplap vertically will help reduce the dust collection inside the board.

Does shiplap need to be face nailed?

No, shiplap does not need to be face-nailed. However, if you are using a shiplap on a ceiling, it is a good idea to use nails or screws to secure the boards in place. This will help keep them in position and prevent them from warping or becoming loose over time.

How do you blind shiplap nails?

If you are using nails to install shiplap, you will want to blind them. This means that you will drive the nails in from the side of the board so that they are hidden from view. This will give a cleaner look and prevent the nails from becoming visible.

Check the video below for clear instructions:

What Are Advantages of Installing Shiplap Over Popcorn Ceiling?

1. Easy to install

Shiplap is a breeze to install, whereas removing a popcorn ceiling can be a lot of work. It can be installed over a popcorn ceiling without any problems in just few hours with some basic carpentry skills.

Additionally, the shiplap has groove cuts on the sides of the boards. These grooves provide a space for the nails to be inserted, making it easier to secure the boards in place hence making the installation process quick.

2. Great way to hide imperfections

If your popcorn ceiling has any blemishes or cracks, shiplap can help to cover them up. It can also help to hide wiring and other unsightly features.

Moreover, shiplap can also help to improve the appearance of your home, making it look more polished and refined. It is a good choice to add some visual interest to your room by using it on an accent wall or the ceiling.

3. Less messy

When it comes to installing shiplap, you will see, it is a lot less messy. You do not have to remove the popcorn ceiling before installing it. You can simply attach the boards directly.

So Less dust, less threat to asbestos and no need for scraping and cleaning.

4. Durable material

Shiplap is a durable material that can last for many years with proper care. By installing it over your popcorn ceiling, you can enjoy the benefits of this sturdy material for years to come.

5. Can be customized

The best thing about shiplap is that you can customize it to match your style and needs. You can choose from a variety of colours, styles and textures to create the perfect look for your home.

6. Tall feel to your ceiling

When installed on the ceiling, shiplap can give the illusion of a higher ceiling. When installed, the ceiling will look sleek and polished, which will make the room feel more spacious.

Drawbacks Of Shiplap Ceiling Over Popcorn Ceiling

As much there are benefits of shiplap, there are a few drawbacks as well. A few of them are:

1. Is more expensive than a popcorn ceiling

Shiplap is a more expensive material than popcorn ceiling. If you are on a tight budget, it may not be the best option for you.

However, it is worth noting that shiplap is a durable and long-lasting material, so it may be worth the investment in the long run.

2. Requires more maintenance than a popcorn ceiling

Shiplap needs to be regularly cleaned and stained in order to keep its appearance look good for years.

3. Can be damaged by moisture

Like all wood materials, shiplap can be damaged by moisture. It largely depends on the type of wood, you choose but in most cases, it’s not a good choice for areas that are prone to moisture, such as bathrooms and kitchens.

TIP: Read my post: Wood Ceiling in a Bathroom

4. Can be less forgiving

Shiplap is a more unforgiving material than popcorn ceiling. If there are any mistakes made during the installation process, it can be difficult to fix them. Take your time and make sure everything is done correctly.

Is shiplap a current trend or timeless?

Shiplap is definitely a current trend and there is no doubt that it will also be considered a timeless classic in the future. It has been used for centuries and it is still popular today due to its versatility.

Can I use shiplap over drywall?

Yes, you can use shiplap over drywall. However, take the time to find all the studs  in the wall so that you can attach the shiplap securely.

What is the cheapest way to cover a popcorn ceiling?

The cheapest way to cover a popcorn ceiling is by using drywall. It is a more affordable but not so durable option.

Which is cheaper shiplap or beadboard?

Shiplap is cheaper than beadboard. This is because beadboard is a more versatile material than shiplap. Additionally, installing a shiplap is much easier as compared to the beadboard.

Is shiplap cheaper than tongue and groove?

Shiplap is a more affordable material than tongue and groove because it is a simpler material. Additionally, tongue and groove require more labor to install as compared to shiplap. If you are on a tight budget, shiplap may be the better option for you.

How much does it cost to put Shiplap on Popcorn Ceiling?

The cost to install shiplap on a popcorn ceiling will vary, depending on the size of the area and the type of shiplap you choose. However, as a general rule, you can expect to pay around $2.50-$7 per square foot for buying the shiplap boards.

Additionally, the cost also depends on whether you are doing the shiplap project yourself or hiring a contractor.