Types of Paneling


Paneling a room in your home adds coziness and warmth. One can choose from a variety of types and styles of paneling. One can create the illusion of a wall-papered room or tiled room with paneling. Choose the paneling type that best fits the room of your project.


  • Paneling comes in three main types: surface paneling, backing and grooves. Surface paneling refers to the surface material the paneling offers. This can be real wood or veneer, vinyl covered, printed-paper or surface printed. Backing material can be plywood, particleboard or hardboard. Grooves can be real grooves in the wood or painted-on grooves to give the illusion of real. Touch the wood to tell if grooves are real or painted.

Surface Paneling

  • Veneer is the most expensive type of paneling and consists of three layers of real wood grains. Vinyl-covered paneling laminates vinyl directly onto the wood board. People use vinyl-paneling type, also called tile board, in the kitchen, laundry room or bathroom instead of real tile. Printed-paper paneling laminates printed-paper onto the wood board. This type of paneling gives the illusion of wallpaper and offers consumers paneling opportunities for every room in the house including bedrooms and living rooms. One can choose from endless patterns and colors with printed-paper paneling. Surface-printing type of paneling takes a photograph of real wood grain finish and transfers it to the wood board to give the semblance of veneer for a much lower cost.


  • Paneling-backing types are plywood, particleboard or hardboard. Plywood is the strongest, but hardboard is the least expensive. Hardboard type of paneling, with a printed-paper surface, is commonly sold at local building supply stores for use in every room in the house. Particleboard is stronger than hardboard and more expensive, but it is a step down from plywood.


  • Grooves-paneling types refer to real grooves or painted grooves. High-quality wood has naturally straight grooves in it, which one can see by looking at this type of paneling. Painted grooves give the semblance of real grooves, but touching them reveals they are painted.


  • Paneling, no matter the type, comes in sheets with each sheet measuring 4-by-8 feet. Rarely will one find other dimensions for sheets of paneling unless he orders it custom-made. Paneling thickness ranges from 1/4 to 7/8 inches. Paneling may be sanded or unfinished (this only applies to veneer). Paneling with printed-paper surfaces may come in any color or pattern.

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