We are about halfway through the One Room Challenge, and I’m realizing it’s definitely going to be a challenge. My plan is to finish installing and finishing all the trim in our house, but showing our progress in the main floor hallway. My goal this week was to fill the nail holes and caulk all of the trim in the house. I didn’t quite complete my goal this week as I still have three and a half rooms left to finish. But I’m going to show you the amazing power of caulk with some before and after pictures of our trim! And you may learn a thing or two about how to caulk trim like a pro.
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First Fill Nail Holes With Spackle
I like to use Crackshot professional grade spackling to fill all the many nail holes in the casing and baseboard (find out how to install trim). A little bit goes a very long way. I bought the smallest container and it’s not even half gone. When you fill the nail holes, make sure the spackling is a little bit proud of the trim because it shrinks when it dries. This way you don’t have to go back and do a second coat. Once the spackling is dry you can sand it smooth with a sanding sponge.
What is the purpose of caulking?
The purpose of caulk is to fill small gaps between the trim and the wall. It makes the moldings took totally finished and gives them a professional look. When you install trim it’s very difficult to get every piece installed flush to the wall. But that’s okay, that’s where caulk comes in.
I find it doesn’t really matter what brand of caulk you get, but just make sure that it is paintable white latex caulk. I generally buy the least expensive brand, which is only a couple dollars per tube. Again, a little bit goes a long way. I figure by the time I’m done caulking I will have used five tubes, so that’s less than $20 for the whole house.
Caulking isn’t the most difficult job, but it’s fairly time consuming and takes a bit of practice to do it quickly and neatly. If you want to do a perfect job you can tape the wall and the trim and get a perfect line. I am much too impatient to tape anything.
How to caulk trim like a pro
Here are some tips for caulking trim:
- Cut the end of the tube on an angle with as small a hole as possible. This allows for a very fine bead of caulking
- Put the tube in the caulking gun and squeeze the trigger until a small amount of caulk comes out
- Run the tip of the tube along the trim while applying an even pressure to the gun.
- Use a wet cloth (or finger) to smooth out the caulk
- Then clean up any mess with a damp paper towel
Now you can see how amazing caulk really is! It totally just finishes the trim and makes it look seamless and professional. I didn’t quite finish everything that I wanted to this week, but I’m hoping to finish the rest of the caulking this week before I start painting next week.
To see the finished hallway, check out the completed hallway makeover!
Carol ("Mimi") says
It’s amazing how much. more finished your hallway looks after caulking. Your project is really coming along!
It’s getting there! Still lots to do
Those before and after photos are great! It REALLY makes a difference!
What a huge project Jessica! The caulk really does give it that professional, finished look!
You did a great job!!! So you can now come over and help me paint/wallpaper, right?! LOL!!!
I agree it makes such a difference! looking good Jessica! so much cleaner!
This is really helpful and everything looks great! Thanks for sharing!