DIY baseboard installation: 4 things I've learned

I was dreading installing our baseboards even more than installing 1,600+ SF of laminate flooring ourselves. I had this fear that we would somehow never get to it and would live in an unfinished house for years. They make SUCH a difference! But luckily we got into a groove and I figured out a few tips for making the baseboard project go smoother!

The first day we spent on baseboards was a little slow as we got the hang of things. But it definitely got easier, and one day we did a whole room and hall in only about 2 hours! (Not including caulking or paint touch-ups.)

DIY Baseboard Installation Tips


1. Measure a few pieces at once, not all of them.
It can get confusing remembering which pieces you're cutting, particularly if you're splitting up tasks with a helper. It's helpful if you can picture the wall section you're cutting for, and whether the corners point in or out, or just to take really good, easy-to-read notes. Still, we found we lost track and felt more comfortable re-measuring some walls anyway when we tried to be efficient and measure a whole room or area at once. I recommend noting 3-4 pieces, cutting them, placing them (you can wait to nail gun them up if you like), then measuring more.

2. Nail in an up-down, fairly regular pattern.
I found that this pattern gave me good coverage but also won't look too shabby if a few nail holes show after we paint. You may need extra nails in some places or if you're not hitting a stud, but start with this regular spacing and pattern and it will still look more uniform.

3. Caulk as you go.
When you have all of the furniture in the middle of the room anyway is the best time! Plus, you might forget where you haven't caulked if you wait too long. We definitely had a few places that needed touch-ups when we remembered we hadn't caulked there yet. Bit of a pain.

4. Check the air compressor and gun often.
A couple times I realized I was shooting blanks or not shooting because I was out of nails or once, after lunch when we'd turned the compressor off, it didn't have pressure (oops!). Check both regularly.

There you go! It's really not as bad as I thought. Hope these tips help you!

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