How To Install Crown Molding

Written by Milan Jara on 9th Jul 2015

After we finish a ceiling, or whenever a customer asks us how to finish a ceiling they completed with materials they bought from us, we always like to point the conversation toward crown molding.

Sure, we sell plenty of crown molding for you to choose from, but that is not the only reason that we recommend it. The effect you get from crown molding cannot be duplicated by any other finishing product, and for the money, we think that crown molding is the best finishing option available.

Install Crown Molding

Types of Crown Molding

The great thing about crown molding is that it comes in a variety of looks and you can usually find a price that fits your budget. You can get some very decorative crown molding, or you can go with a basic look that is still stunning. You can get unfinished crown molding and apply your own colors to it, or you can get molding that has already been treated and ready to install.

The Right Tools

Crown molding is tricky because it usually leaves a space between the molding and the wall, which makes lining the molding up very difficult. To install crown molding, you will need:

  • A power miter saw: You can try to go cheap with a manual miter saw, but you will regret it. You need clean, sharp cuts, and a power miter saw is the only way to get it.
  • A drill: It is easier to drill the holes and then nail in the nails because the drilled holes will prevent the molding from cracking
  • Measuring equipment: Remember to measure twice and cut once.
  • A glue gun: Hot glue will help you to create invisible seams and great corners.

Practice Making Corners

Before you start cutting for real, it is always a good idea to buy some inexpensive crown molding and practice cutting angles to make corners. The straight cuts are easy, but the corner cuts on crown molding can be extremely difficult. We always recommend a couple of hours of practice on cutting corners before you start to cut the real molding.

Measure Your Lengths and Pieces

Once you feel confident in your ability to make some awesome crown molding corners, it is time to measure. First, measure the lengths of the walls where you will be installing your molding and make a quick drawing to give you an idea of what you will be doing. Your drawing will make it easier to visualize where the pieces go and make the proper cuts. Then, start measuring your pieces to be cut. Remember to extend your corner measurements out to compensate for the miter cuts. This is where your practice will come in handy because it will help you to better understand just how to measure corner cuts before you make them.

Drill and Nail

Putting up crown molding is at least a two-person job because of the precision required. Once your pieces are cut, hold them in place and drill holes every 18 inches, then secure the molding in place using nails. When you reach a seam on a longer wall, make sure to use the glue gun to bring the seam in the molding together tightly. You should also glue the corners together to make them look professional.

Fill and Paint

After your molding is up, you can fill in the nail holes with liquid wood and then paint your molding after the liquid wood has dried. We always like to run some fine sandpaper over the molding before we paint it to smooth out the nail holes and any other rough spots. If you used molding that has been pre-painted, then you should still fill in the nail holes and then sand the material after it dries. Make sure your paint perfectly matches your molding to get the right results.

We make it sound easy here, but putting up crown molding is serious work. Be sure you have a team to help and take the time to learn how to do all of the basics before you get started. Check out our selection of crown molding products and send us a picture when you are done! We always like to see the results of the hard work of our customers.

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