How to Finish a Beadboard Around Outlets

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Beadboard style wainscoting is a stylish way to add the elegance of wood to your walls. Installing beadboard is not difficult. However, you may encounter a small challenge when finishing it around electrical outlets. The key to installing around outlets is marking and cutting an accurate notch in the boards around the beadboard. The notches can be cut with a basic jigsaw. Don't worry about achieving perfect cuts. Any slight imperfections will be concealed with the electrical outlet cover.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 beadboard panels
  • Combination square
  • Pencil
  • Jig saw, metal cutting blade
  • Construction adhesive
  • Hammer
  • Box, finish nails
  • Electrical outlet cover, screw included
  • Screwdriver
  • Position one beadboard panel on either side of the electrical outlet and draw a line across the top and bottom edges of the outlet onto each board with the combination square and pencil. This is the height required for the notches that you will have to make in order to fit the boards around the outlet. With the boards still in place on either side of the outlet, measure and mark the depth required for the notches. Each notch should be half the width of the outlet so that when you place the boards together they fit evenly on either side of the outlet. Perform this step before any of the other boards are attached to the wall.

  • Place the boards on a work surface. Cut out the notch in each board as marked using a jigsaw with a metal cutting blade. The metal cutting blade will help reduce splintering because it has finer teeth than wood cutting blades.

  • Fit the boards into place on either side of the outlet to test the fit of the notch. Adjust the notch if needed with the jigsaw.

  • Apply a bead of construction adhesive to the back of each board and fit it into place. Press each board firmly against the wall.

  • Hammer finish nails along the outside edge of the boards, every 4 to 6 inches. Fit the outlet plate over the electrical outlet. Using screws that are included with the outlet plate kit, attach the the outlet plate to the electrical outlet. There are holes in the plate and outlet to accommodate the screws.

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