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Crown Molding Installation and FAQ!

Crown Molding Installation in Your Home

Installing crown molding in your home is a great way to improve to look, feel, and invitation of the space. Also, if you have plaster walls, crown molding can also help to cover up imperfections in the corners (where ceilings meet the walls) in a permanent and cost effective way (those repairs can get expensive!)

These days, there are many different sizes styles of crown molding you can have installed in your home. Here in southeastern PA, we generally purchase standard crown styles from a local lumber yard like Lowes, Home Depot, or Tague Lumber. For any specialty crown moldings, we generally order from Garden State Lumber and have the materials special ordered.

Most crown molding install projects done these days are with 3 ⅝ colonial style crown molding and is installed in one piece. The detail portion of the crown faces down and the flat side faces the ceiling. This is the most common style of crown molding youll see installed in homes throughout the area, especially where the ceilings are 8’ tall. For homes with taller ceilings (9’ higher, especially two-story foyers), 4 ⅝ colonial crown is usually found. Larger victorian homes will often have additional ¨steps¨ in the design.

When a carpenter or designer talks about steps in the crown, they are usually referring to a ¨built up¨ crown design that includes 2 or more pieces of trim to create a more detailed crown profile. The more pieces involved, the more intricate and elegant the profile can be. Of course, the more pieces are involved, the more labor and materials are needed to complete the project.

Crown Molding Frequently Asked Questions

How do you prevent the crown molding from cracking?
When we install crown molding, we will glue the crown to the wall and ceiling as well as inside each of the connecting (scarf) joints. The reason we do this is because the wood will swell and shrink accordingly with the seasons and humidity. When there is a lot of humidity in the air, the wood trim can expand slightly and the seams can crack. To prevent this, we use plenty of glue to keep the crown in place and prevent cracking.

How much does it cost to install crown molding?
Installing crown molding is very labor intensive and requires a high level of skill to install efficiently for the long run. Poor installation and finishing can result in an ugly and expensive piece of wood hanging from the ceiling. Material costs (in January of 2023) will be anywhere from $2.50-$4.00 per LF (lineal feet) with labor costs ranging anywhere from $12-$20 per LF to install. The more complex the project is, and the larger the room is, the higher the costs will be.

Not only does the crown need to be installed well, but the gaps between wall and ceiling will need to be caulked, the nail holes filled with putty, and the crown molding itself painted after installation. To get a range of the costs, measure the dimensions of the room and calculate the total LF of the perimeter. From there, add 20% to the total and multiply by the ranges provided above. The 20% is for cutting overages (you always need more crown than the room size because of the cut and waste factor). The number you get from the calculator wont be exact, but it will be close enough to start weighing your estimates against.

Should I hire a handyman to install my crown molding?
If they have references and plenty of photos, I would say go ahead. But dont just take someones word for it. Crown molding installation can be complicated, and its unlikely that an installer without significant experience will do a great and long lasting job. Make sure youve seen photos of their work ahead of time! Ive been installing crown for many years and still learning new tricks and techniques for longevity, production, and quality.

Where can I find an installer for my crown molding project?
At Sabatini Pro Painting and our sister company RS Molding Design, we have a great team of competent and friendly carpenters who regularly install crown molding and other fine trim projects. Whether the install is paint or stain grade, we can help you with the design and install at a competitive rate. If you are outside of our service area but are still looking for a great crown molding installer, I would recommend reaching out to local contractors youve worked with in the past who can provide recommendations. If that wont produce any useful information, take a look at your local towns facebook groups and see if you can find a good referral there. Remember, always look for photos of the work and speak with references! Most people never take that step but it can pay off quite a bit in the long run.

Remember, its easier to install it right the first time than fix it and do it again!

From all of us at Sabatini Pro Painting and RS Molding Design, best of luck and health to you and your family in 2023!

Contact Sabatini Pro Painting for a Free Estimate

When you are ready to refresh your home, Sabatini Pro Painting is a trusted painting contractor in the Delaware County Area. We provide interior and exterior painting services, as well as cabinet painting, drywall repairwallpaper removal, residential and commercial painting for hotels, schools, and more! Our experienced team takes great pride in providing quality work quickly and efficiently.

Locations served in Delaware County, PA include Ridley, PA – Springfield, PA – Swarthmore, PA – Wallingford, PA – Rose Valley, PA – Media, PA – Aston, PA – Broomall , PA – Edgmont , PA – Glen Mills , PA – Garnet Valley, PA – Brookhaven , PA – Bethel Township , PA – Concordville , PA – Newtown Square , PA – Chadds Ford, PA – West Goshen, PA

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Rick Sabatini

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