How Much Does it Cost to Cover My Popcorn Ceiling With Beadboard Ceiling Planks?

Nick P. Cellucci
Written by Nick P. Cellucci
Updated April 26, 2022
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  • Beadboard can be used to cover unsightly popcorn ceilings

  • Covering popcorn ceilings with beadboard costs $1,500–$7,750

  • It’s not necessary to remove popcorn ceilings to install beadboard

  • You can safely contain asbestos popcorn ceilings with beadboard

  • Traditional beadboard installation should be done by a pro

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As the proud owner of an old house, you may not be as proud of some of its design features from the past. Once a popular way to cover unsightly spots, popcorn ceilings have become a bit unattractive themselves, both in the eyes of homeowners and potential homebuyers. If you’re looking for a way to cover your popcorn ceilings, wooden ceiling planks or paneling like beadboard is an efficient and affordable solution. You’ll pay an average of $4,350 to $6,150 to have the job done professionally—we break down the cost to install beadboard ceiling over popcorn in this guide.

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Beadboard Ceiling Installation Costs Near You

The total cost of installing a beadboard ceiling over a popcorn ceiling will vary depending on where you live. Here is a list of cost ranges for this type of project in major cities across the U.S.:

10 cities compared by cost to cover popcorn ceiling with beadboard, ranging $3,930 to $7,060
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How Much Does It Cost to Install Beadboard Ceiling Over a Popcorn Ceiling per Square Foot?

The average cost to have beadboard professionally installed over a popcorn ceiling ranges from $5 to $6 per square foot, including the cost of the materials and labor. If your popcorn ceiling is free of asbestos and you choose to DIY your beadboard installation, expect to pay $2 to $4.20 per square foot for the cost of materials.

In most cases, you can install beadboard directly over a popcorn ceiling without needing to remove the popcorn texture. However, if you opt to remove it, expect to pay an additional $1.30 to $2.50 per square foot, plus an additional $3 to $7 per square foot if your popcorn ceiling contains asbestos.

Cost Breakdown of Installing Beadboard Ceiling Over a Popcorn Ceiling

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Covering a popcorn ceiling with beadboard typically only involves the materials and labor needed for the actual installation of the beadboard. Here’s how your total project cost might break down.


Unfinished wooden beadboard planks or prefab panels cost $2 to $3.50 per square foot. You can also purchase DIY-friendly beadboard kits for $2.50 to $4.20 per square foot from your local home improvement store.


If hiring a professional handyperson to install your beadboard ceiling, you’ll pay $1 to $3.50 per square foot to cover the cost of labor alone.

Popcorn Ceiling Removal

Popcorn texture does not have to be removed from a ceiling to cover it with beadboard. However, if you do want the ceiling texture professionally removed before beadboard installation, you’ll pay an average of $1.30 to $2.50 per square foot to a local popcorn ceiling removal service.

You can also remove a popcorn ceiling yourself if it does not contain asbestos. You’ll first need to send in an asbestos test kit to a laboratory to have it tested for $100. Once your test comes back negative, the tools needed for DIY popcorn ceiling removal cost $65 to $75.

Asbestos Removal

If your asbestos test comes back positive and you still wish to have it removed rather than simply covering it, you’ll pay an additional $3 to $7 per square foot for a local asbestos removal service.

Cost to Install Beadboard Ceiling Over a Popcorn Ceiling Yourself

While ceiling planks are similar to tongue-and-groove hardwood flooring, installing planks on your ceiling can be challenging and is best left to a skilled craftsperson. However, if you have basic carpentry knowledge, DIY-friendly beadboard kits are available for $2.50 to $4.20 per square foot.

If you have the skills and experience required for a traditional beadboard ceiling installation, you’ll need about three full workdays and the following tools and materials:

  • Unfinished wooden beadboard planks or prefab panels: $2–$3.50 per sq. ft.

  • Finishing nail gun: $100–$300 to purchase or $40 per day to rent

  • Circular saw: $100–$300 to purchase or $25 per day to rent

  • Ceiling paint (optional): $25 per gallon

When purchasing your beadboard, be sure to factor in an additional 10% on top of the square footage of your ceiling to account for waste.

Cost to Install It Yourself vs. Hiring a Contractor

The total cost for all the tools and materials needed to cover your popcorn ceiling with a DIY beadboard ceiling is $1,960 for an average 500-square foot room. The average cost to have a local handyperson professionally install beadboard in the same space ranges from $2,500 to $3,000, so you’ll save money if you have the carpentry skills necessary to DIY.

Additionally, if you’re also planning to remove the popcorn ceiling yourself before beadboard installation, you’ll simply need a ladder and scraper.

How to Save Money While Installing Beadboard Ceiling Over a Popcorn Ceiling

Although you may not be able to install beadboard as a DIY, you may still be able to save money by doing other aspects of the project yourself. For example, if you want to paint your ceiling, you can do the painting yourself after having a contractor install the beadboard planks.

Popcorn ceiling removal is also a relatively simple task that requires no additional costs if you already own a ladder and scraper. Be sure to have your ceiling tested for asbestos before doing this type of work. It typically costs about $100 to send an asbestos sample to a laboratory for testing, which is a necessary step before attempting any removal work.

Questions and Answers About Installing Beadboard Ceiling Over a Popcorn Ceiling

Is it cheaper to remove or cover a popcorn ceiling?

If no repairs are needed, it is cheaper to cover a popcorn ceiling than to remove it. You can easily cover it with wooden beadboard for $5 to $6 per square foot or another textured ceiling such as knockdown drywall for $1 to $2 per square foot. Removal can range from $1.50 to $9.50 per square foot, but this does not include the application of a new finish.

Can you put beadboard over a popcorn ceiling?

You can install beadboard paneling or planks over a popcorn ceiling as an efficient and affordable alternative to the cost of popcorn ceiling removal. Beadboard also doubles as a way to cover and contain asbestos rather than disturb it or pay for costly asbestos removal.

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