T&G ceiling quandry

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Forum topic by KLF posted 04-24-2021 02:09 AM 447 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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24 posts in 139 days

04-24-2021 02:09 AM

I am in the final stages of renovating a sunporch on the back of the house. It had tongue & groove knotty pine on the ceiling and side walls above the windows before, which I carefully removed and numbered, as I really want to put it all back up. This room had 4 skylights in the ceiling before which all leaked (of course), so I removed them. So, I need to buy some more T&G to fill in the section where the skylights were.

The quandry is the old pine has a patina and is darker now. I believe it’s about 15-18 years old, but as far as I can tell there was no finish applied before it was installed. I haven’t bought the new stuff yet, but I’m sure it will be lighter. So I’m trying to figure out a way to get it all looking as close to the same color as possible, so the new stuff doesn’t stick out.

I sanded some of it last weekend to see if I could get rid of the dark surface, and it helped a lot, but it’s still not the same as the back side. See photo:

The darkest piece on the left is the unsanded face. The piece just to the right is after sanding, but you can still see a shadow of where there was a piece of trim over part of it. I found a can of Minwax Polyshades in Honey Pine in the basement, so I put some on that smallest wedge piece that has also been sanded, and the back side of another piece (far right). They don’t really match well. I don’t want it any darker than that.

I’ve been to 3 different places and have 3 different answers. The guy at the Sherwin-Williams store said they would need a piece of the old sanded wood and the new wood, and they would mix up a custom stain, making it darker until they matched. Another guy said I was out of luck, to just buy all new T&G or sheetrock the ceiling. Third guy says put the stuff up with no finish at all, let it age and it will eventually fade to match.

What would you guys do? Sorry for being so long-winded.

-- Measure twice, cut once.

10 replies so far

View bilyo's profile


1368 posts in 2216 days

#1 posted 04-24-2021 03:17 AM

I think, after some time, the new wood will darken enough to blend in with the old. Even with a clear finish on it, the darkening will go just so far and then not get any darker. The new stuff, in time, will catch up. I think rather than putting it all back in the same positions and then putting in large patches of new wood, I would mix it all up and then the differences in color will not be as noticeable.

View SMP's profile


4136 posts in 1019 days

#2 posted 04-24-2021 04:06 AM

I recently had a similar issue, i tried matching some of the old boards with all of the General Finishes colors , I ended up going i think Pecan or Nutmeg, stained every board, lightly sanded back, and mixed all the boards up. Does not look “natural “ but at least it all matches.

View Robert's profile


4583 posts in 2594 days

#3 posted 04-24-2021 11:35 AM

I don’t see any option other than get it as close as you can and let natural raging do the rest.

Bear in mind pine is notoriously hard to stain due to blotching, so I would seal it prior to staining. My inclination would be to use dye, as you can darken by applying more coats.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View Madmark2's profile


2831 posts in 1702 days

#4 posted 04-24-2021 12:52 PM


-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

View Mike_D_S's profile


711 posts in 3328 days

#5 posted 04-24-2021 12:56 PM

While every person is different, I think you have to take the ‘50 ft rule’ here a bit and use the layout.

First off make sure when you look at the colors as a comparison, especially for the ceiling, make sure you are standing about the same distance someone else will be standing when they see it. No one’s going to be 24” from the ceiling once its installed, so see what it looks like from 5 – 10 ft away when comparing the color.

Secondly use the transition from the wall to the ceiling. Maybe all new on the wall and use the old stuff from the wall to finish the ceiling. Color changes at a transition, especially when the different angles catch the light differently don’t draw the eye as much.

Lastly, if you really want to color it, then use a water base dye and give it a light tint to maybe 65% of the way. It’ll help initially and in a year it’ll be noticeably darker anyway.

-- No honey, that's not new, I've had that forever......

View GR8HUNTER's profile


8524 posts in 1826 days

#6 posted 04-24-2021 01:26 PM

i would just mix in the new into whole ceiling in year you will never notice it :<))))))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View KLF's profile


24 posts in 139 days

#7 posted 04-24-2021 01:52 PM

Thank you all for your feedback. I’m still not sure on the best option, but I’m inclined to get a little more aggressive with the sanding to see if I can get it closer to match. Maybe start with some 80 grit, then go to 120 and finish with 180. I have two 5” ROS setups. I actually considered running it through the planer but being pine several pieces are cupped and I’m afraid how much I’d have to take off.

I think that Mike is right, being up on the ceiling it’s just not going to be as noticeable as I think it will be. And I do hope that after a year or two it will age to match. I don’t want to paint or go with something radically different, as the living room right next to this room has the same T&G on a cathedral ceiling, so it needs to match.

Wondering if I should apply a clear sealer or finish before I start reinstalling.

-- Measure twice, cut once.

View bilyo's profile


1368 posts in 2216 days

#8 posted 04-24-2021 02:18 PM

Yes. Seal it before you install.

View ibewjon's profile


2476 posts in 3907 days

#9 posted 04-24-2021 03:40 PM

Highlight the areas from the windows with trim so it looks like a planned feature.

View KLF's profile


24 posts in 139 days

#10 posted 04-24-2021 05:20 PM

This is what it looked like before I started the renovation. Those tall windows are actually doors, edge-to-edge. It was a cheap way to build the walls, but eventually they started to fail from water intrusion at the bottom. All the T&G you see has been carefully saved, except the short pieces surrounding the skylights. So that is how much I need to buy new.

So the beveled pieces on the sides are all intact and I can just put them right back up now. It’s the ceiling that’s where I’m worried about.

-- Measure twice, cut once.

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