Whether you’re a homeowner who likes to do things yourself or an experienced tradesman, you’ll find that PVC wall panelling is the easiest cladding to install. It’s quick, requires minimal effort, and there’s no dust and mess like you’d get with tiling or traditional wooden panelling. This article is going to provide you with an easy step by step guide to fit bathroom wall panels directly to your partition or to surfaces like tiles.
There are two methods you can implement when installing tongue and groove wall panelling. You can nail or screw the panels to wooden strips, or you can glue the board directly to the wall. I’ll describe both methods in this DIY guide.
As with any home improvement project, it’s essential to work in an orderly fashion and keep things neat and tidy. So start by cleaning the wall that you intend cladding. Remember that you’ll be using a PVC glue if you’re installing directly onto a partition, so it’s vital to ensure there is no greasy residue or loose grit on the wall.
Installing Panels using wooden strips.
This method will also apply if you’re installing the panels directly onto a wooden frame wall.
Measure the panels to ensure that they fit, both by width and height. If you need to cut the boards, this is really easy. Mark the cutting line using a straight edge. Cut the panels to size using a hack saw, or jigsaw with a fine tooth blade. You can also use an angle grinder, but take care not to burn the panel.
If there are pipes or electrical wiring that require holes, measure these accurately. Use the correct size hole saw to cut the opening.
Use self-driving screws to attach the panels to the wooden strips or wall frame. Drive the screws into the inner (tongue) edge, so that they are hidden when you slot the next panel using the tongue and grooves.
For a perfect finish in corners, we would recommend using proper corner trim to give you a professional finish.
However, if you have a smooth corner or curved wall you can still get the curve you require from cutting scoring the back of the panels in several places or by using a heat gun.
To do this, some measure the distance from the edge to where it meets the bend and mark this with a line. Using a heat gun, they heat the line, then carefully bend the panel. To ensure that it fits snugly into the angle they apply the bend while holding it in position.
You do this at your own risk and obviously need to take great care when using a heat gun. We also take no responsibility or accept no liability as your panels aren’t designed for this. However, if this is part of the architecture of your home, then we wanted to make you aware that others have done this and to find out more search for there videos online.
Finish off by covering gaps between the panels and ceiling with ceiling mouldings. These are easily applied using silicone glue. Do the same for gaps at the floor and around doors if necessary, using the appropriate fixings.
Applying PVC panels directly to a wall.
You should use internal and ceiling profiles when installing PVC panels to a flat wall. These are designed to allow the boards to slot into position with a neat and flush finish. If you choose not to use these profiles, you can use a silicone sealer to seal gaps where the corners meet and ceiling mouldings.
Measure and cut your panels to the correct height. This best tool for this job is a hacksaw. Where ceiling profiles meet at the corners, use proper corner trim. Making for a perfectly sealed and professional finish.
Use silicone glue to fix the profiles to the wall. You can also reinforce this with staples, nails or screws.
Measure and cut the panels, following the same procedure as described in step 1 for the wooden frame installation.
Then cut the tongue edge using a craft knife so that it can slot into the profile.
Apply silicone glue to the back of the panel and slot it into the internal (corner) and ceiling profile. Continue this process. Where each panel joins, you can nail the tongue edge to the wall for extra reinforcing.
Where panels join on the outer corners, you won’t be using an internal profile. You’ll need to cut the panels for outer edges so that they join at 45-degrees. You can use mouldings that are designed for door and window openings. These then slot easily into the tongue and grooves of the panels.
Installing PVC panels to concrete or masonry walls
If you want to install these panels directly to a concrete wall or unplastered bricks, you’ll need to use concrete clips. These are metal clips that can be screwed into the wall and allow the tongue of the panel to clip into position.
You’ll follow the same steps as you would when fixing the panels directly to a plastered wall. The difference is that you’ll need to install the concrete clips first. Measure where the edge of the board will be on the wall. Then install the clips, approximately 1′ apart. The clips need to follow a line so that the tongue of the panel can slot into them from top to bottom.
Instead of using silicone glue, use spray foam for concrete installation.