Install Polystyrene Molding

Give your rooms an upgrade and save money at the same time when you install your own molding.
Install Polystyrene Molding
Traditionally molding was made of plaster and wood, but today a popular molding material is polystyrene. (housepaintingtutorials.com/TNS)
2/5/2024
Updated:
2/5/2024

Install molding and change plain-Jane walls to transform any room with a distinct style and mood. Molding is an architectural element that’s always noticed whether it’s installed on walls at the ceiling and baseboard, or as a chair rail or outlining doors and windows.

Traditionally molding was made of plaster and wood, but today a popular molding material is polystyrene; it’s less expensive and easy to work with. You’ll find molding sold online and in the lumber section of most home centers and lumber yards. The material is available in an array of designs and configurations, from deep ceiling cornices to intricate profiles, often mimicking those traditionally made in plaster or wood. Many need to be installed with mitered corners, while others are designed with plinth blocks or rosettes on the corners, so no miter cuts are needed.

A carpenter will charge $274 to trim out a 5-by-7-foot door and 3-by-4-foot window with polystyrene molding, but you can do the job for $100, the cost of the material and adhesive, saving 64 percent. The trim is fastened to the wall with adhesive spread on the backside of each piece, and then secured in place with finishing nails. Make sure to countersink the small nail holes and fill the nail heads with spackling compound and sand smooth before finishing.

Finish the project with a coat of paint. If you have a workspace large enough to lay out the material, you can prime and paint the new molding before installing it. Otherwise, install it on the wall, but take care to mask off the surrounding surface so you paint only the molding.

To find more DIY project costs and to post comments and questions, visit www.diyornot.com and m.diyornot.com on smartphones.

Pro Cost—DIY Cost—Pro time—DIY Time—DIY Savings—Percent Saved

$274—$100—1.2—4.0—$174—64 percent

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©2022 Gene and Katie Hamilton. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
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