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Coping with Baseboard Installation

So.... Baseboard Installation - Miter Vs. Coping?

Baseboard Installation - Before and After
What to Know about Handyman Baseboard Installation - Before and After, by GottaGuy Services in Petaluma

There an endless debate on which is the best solution for baseboard installation, but which one would be preferable - and where?


45 degree cuts on baseboard and trim is the quickest to knock out, but what are the downsides? The first rule of thumb - very rarely will a house have 45 degree inside corners. Thank goodness for caulking! Caulking does a great job of blending not-so-tight joints into looking seamless. That is, if it is painted. If it is stained, the 45 degree joint won’t look good, and just amateurish at best. Bummer! Also, if the floors are uneven, your miter woes have just increased. Hope you like scribing!


Coping joints take longer and has a steeper learning curve, but once it’s mastered - it provides a seamless and flexible joint that works on just about any inside corner as well as uneven flooring, regardless if it’s painted or stained.


Coping joints are done by mitering the end that you want to join in the corner, tracing the contour with a pencil (a carpenter’s pencil works best), and using a coping saw to cut along the contour traced out with the pencil. It takes patience and practice - a lot of both. You can also use a grinder (if you’re very careful and practicing best safety protocols) that make it a little easier and faster (but definitely more dusty!)

Coping joints are best used in larger rooms where the biggest change of the corner angles will change over time, and are usually rooms more populated.


Miter joints are best used in smaller rooms (like large and small closets and pantries) where it is a title less likely that the angles will change and are definitely less populated. Any mistakes won’t matter as much, and won’t be on display for visitors to observe.


No matter what, keep that caulk handy!


Thank you for reading!

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