How to Install Wood Crown Molding | Ask This Old House

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everybody has a problem with crown

molding but this is a nice simple detail

quarter round detail I like this detail

with this trim that you have around your

do is it's nice and simple I'll be more

than happy to help you with this but to

get started I want to run a straight

line around the room to set our crown

molding too I'm going to mark each

corner using a strap piece of crown

molding holding it at the right

orientation I then connect the lines

together using a white chalk line

because the white chalk will remove easy

right then okay it goes we're going to

start installing the crown molding on

the front wall now it's going to require

two pieces of crown molding so what I

want to do is I actually want to put a

scarf joint or a miter joint in the

middle so I'm going to take my first

piece and I'm going to put it in the

corner just holding it tight I've marked

a position where our stud is in the wall

and I'm just going to put them are about

where my center of my studies I'm going

to miter this first piece okay this is

the saw that I'm going to use to make

all of the cuts in the room now the

first thing I want to show you is the

orientation that the molding will sit in

the room it's like this this being the

wall this being the ceiling but I don't

want to cut it holding it in this

orientation what I want to do is I want

to flip it over like this put it on the

saw now when I hold it against the saw

this is the ceiling and this is the wall

now why do you do it this way well

because now I have more points of

contact and I can actually hold it

better so it's safer so now when I turn

my saw a tilted to 45 degrees I can make

my cut

all right now we're ready to put our

first piece up I'm actually going to

nail it to the wall but the first thing

I want to do is find a stud right there

so I'm going to take them all and put

tie it into the corner now I want to

take the bottom of the molding and put

it on our white line so now my first

stud right there now I'm going to nail

into the seat also now when I nail it to

the ceiling I don't have to worry about

finding a stud or any structure because

there's actually blocking between the

joist and also one parallel with the

wall so now what I want to do is I want

to take this end of it and I want to

slide it up to the bottom of the

crumbling hits the white line right

there that will make the bottom of the

crown molding straight around the row we

use an 18-gauge finish nailer with a two

inch nail now I got to push this molding

up to the line right there now I'm gonna

nail it okay now I want to get a length

to this piece right here so we'll just

hold that up in the corner I'll push it

to you and I'm gonna get a length right

there okay now my SAR is still set on 45

degrees when I cut the first piece of

molding that we put up

I cut it from this side of the saw now I

have to cut this molding on this side of

the saw so my two cuts will be parallel

to each other

just dry fit okay that looks that looks


now what I want to do first is I want to

glue the joint push you right up

okay push it in me a little bit oh not

too much okay nailing it that's how you

make a scarf joint and now we'll just

inhale the rest of the moving off all

right now let me show you how I'm going

to deal with the corner now some people

will miter each piece like this it's a

45 degree angle here in a 45 degree

angle here

make it a 90 degree corner you don't

have a 90 degree angle the piece won't

fit tight together I would have to

bisect this angle so whatever that

degree is I would have to cut equal

degrees on each piece now the other

thing you had to worry about is when the

wood dries out as it dries out it

shrinks and the joint can open up to

lessen that problem what I like to do is

do a butt cut in the corner as we did

and a miter on the next piece now if you

see when I put it up it won't fit tight

so what I have to do is remove all of

this material in the back down to the

painted edge now to remove the wood in

the back I'm going to use this saw right

here it's a coping saw blade it's a

small blade making a curved cut just

going to follow the leading edge and the


let's see how it fits

just hold that on up there Patrick

don't push it up tight just let me

position it put it right into the corner

like that

now that fits pretty good okay so now

before I fasten it into place I'm going

to put some caulking in behind here

what's the for well it's going to

fill any imperfections in that cut so

we'll have a nice tight corner now I'm

going to tack it in place now we'll just

keep working our way around the room

look at your miter first your spike

all right now I need to cut an outside

corner for the piece that's going to go

over the brick and to do that I'm going

to set my saw on a 45 degree angle I'm

going to here's my length right there

all right that's the piece is going to

go in front of the fireplace that's one

okay now I'm going to turn my saw the

other direction at 45 degrees cut the

other piece of molding for the end of

the fireplace I'm going to pre assemble

the two pieces down here and then I'm

going to install it as one I'm using

construction adhesive along the bottom

of the back of the crown molding to

fasten it to the brick then I'll nail it

to the ceiling

alright guys your crown movies all done

now there's a couple of things I want

you to do I want you to caulk around the

top of the crown molding where it meets

the ceiling and also where it meets the

wall to fill in those voids fill all the

nail holes sand it lightly and paint it

I think I can handle that okay