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Wainscot in Basement Bathroom

I would like to add beadboard wainscoting in my basement bathroom in my 1950's home in Virginia. It will be painted. I want to use a species/material that is authentic to the period and style of the home, but I also want it to be maintenance-free. It seems my options are primed white pine or PVC, 1 x 6 x 1/2" thick. The PVC seems to be the better choice for areas with moisture. My question is: is PVC "cheap" or inappropriate? (The sheets of pine beadboard look rather cheap to me.) Also, there do not seem to be many options for baseboard or chair rail/caps in PVC -- but maybe I just didn't ask the right questions at the lumber yard today! Thanks!

Re: Wainscot in Basement Bathroom

I'm not sure it's fair to say PVC is "cheap" cuz it's made out of plastic. Many of the flooring options available today are made of plastic. The carpet in your living room is made of plastic, the paint on your walls is made of plastic, the Corian countertop in your kitchen and bathroom are made of plastic. And, there's a real good chance the shirt you're wearing is made partially or completely out of plastic. But, the choice of materials to use is entirely yours, and it's just a matter of personal preference.

If you paint this wainscotting, use a paint meant for bathrooms like Zinsser's PermaWhite Bathroom Paint available at Home Depot. Not all latex paints are equally resistant to moisture, and the result is that some latex paints will crack and peel when exposed to the moisture and high humidity of a bathroom. By using a paint specifically made for bathrooms, you know you're getting a binder resin that was chosen because of it's high resistance to moisture and humidity. That's your guarantee that you won't have problems with the paint on your wainscotting, and that it'll remain maintenance free.

Re: Wainscot in Basement Bathroom

the pvc wainscotting is a great product however its extremely expensive in comparison to wood, ive worked with a few times for exterior projects.

in regards to the pine, the small packages you can get at big box stores are usually the lowest grade, if you go through a trim supplier or a mill you can get better quality wood. definitely prime it but dont just do the face, for optimal moisture proofing prime every surface of the wood to properly seal it

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