The Pros and Cons of Wall Panels
Last modified: 2019/02/20 | Approximate reading time 3 mins
Paint is no longer the only way you can transform the walls of a space, as there are plenty of modern options on the market. Changing or updating a room of your home can be done with various wall textures and finishes in the form of panels, and homeowners aren’t limited to paint colours or outdated wallpaper anymore.
Of course, like any wall covering there are pros and cons to installing panels. Factors to consider include installation, cost, as well as versatility within the space. However, if you’re looking to breath new life into your home by way of its walls, then wall panels are an attractive and cost-effective option, read on for the details regarding pros and cons!
The Advantages of Installing Wall Panels
The Visual Appeal of Wall Panels
Of course, one of the main pros of interior wall panelling is the visual aspect. Wall panels can be designed to suit the needs and tastes of any homeowner. Whether you choose wood panelling, fabric or faux stone, wall panels provide a surface that is pleasant to look at alongside the additional character they can bring to a space.
Not only can panelling add unique focal points and visual appeal, but they can also work to hide any existing flaws on the walls. Panelling is an excellent tactic to hide flaws or unsightly marks, scratches, dents, or cracks that may have occurred in the surfaces of your home. Wall panels can even work to hide cables from entertainment systems or electronic devices, whereas paint is not capable of this.
The Added Insulation
source: Flickr, My Wall Art
Aside from adding visual appeal and depth to a space, wall panels also work to keep rooms insulated. Panelling is warm and provides both thermal and acoustic insulation. If you live in an apartment or home where noise easily travels, then panels should be considered to dampen the dispersion of noise. Further, depending on the material, some wall panelling is flame resistant. So not only does wall panelling look good, and insulate your home, it has the potential to keep you safe and comfortable.
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Durability & Maintenance
One of the major pros of wall panels is their durability. Most wall panelling is made of heavy materials, and can, therefore, handle plenty of abuse as well as last many years without needing to be replaced. Further, unlike paint, wall panels can be easily cleaned and maintained. Wood or PVC panelling can be cleaned easily with a damp cloth and some household cleaner.
Fabric panels may be slightly more difficult to clean but if removable covers are an option, you can toss these into the washing machine. If damage occurs in your wall panels, you can easily remove, repair and replace them in a simple DIY job. Wood panels can be sanded down and resealed to restore their appearance and shine. Peeling or old, faded paint is much more difficult to update, and will usually require the homeowner to re-do an entire room’s paint job rather than simply removing a single panel.
The Cons of Installing Wall Panels
The Potential of Developing Rot
One of the major cons of installing panelling instead of giving your room a simple paint job is the potential of rot developing on the panels. Rot can easily occur in wood and fabric panelling if any form of water sets into the material. Unfortunately, there is not much to do once rot has embedded itself, aside from replacing the entire panel. It is important to replace water-logged or rotting panels right away, as rot can spread and destroy those panels which are surrounding.
The potential of warping is especially true of wood panelling, as wood is very susceptible to warping and bulging when the temperature fluctuates or when panelling has not been correctly installed. Warping can occur with other materials as well but is less common in fabrics, vinyl and PVC panelling surfaces. However, warping may still occur, so take the utmost care when installing your panels.
Lacking in Sustainability
Although it is slowly becoming more common to work with sustainable materials in our home, most components used for wall panelling are not yet sustainable. Even though there have been several steps forward in the field of degrading plastics, wood and vinyl, the production process is unfortunately not completely safe for the environment.
However, one way to combat this is to work with upcycled materials or look for those which have the seal of approval regarding their sustainability. These may cost more initially, but sustainable materials greatly add to the resale value of the home in the long run!
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