Shiplap siding has been a trend whose use has been spreading over time due to the rustic and natural charm that can be achieved with this type of siding. But shiplap is traditionally used on sheds and barns, have you ever wondered if you can use this type of siding for a mobile home?
Yes, because of the structure and materials in which the mobile homes are built, shiplap can be used as siding, but several very important criteria must be taken into account for the suitability of this material in mobile homes, such as the location of the wood studs, correct installation of shiplap, and being very careful with the electrical installations of the mobile home.
For the research of this topic, I asked in social network groups, to people who own mobile homes about their experience and suggestions about coating the mobile home with shiplap, I got very good comments and advice that I would like to summarize on this topic.
On the other hand, I also gathered information on what are the essential criteria and tips to take into account when siding a mobile home with shiplap.
Can a mobile home really be clad with shiplap?
Yes, a mobile home can be sided with shiplap, in fact, mobile homes, despite having significant differences in relation to the type of platform it has in relation to a traditional house, have the same materials and structural elements as a traditional house.
The compatibility of materials found in a mobile home in relation to shiplap is good, in the interior, mobile homes are built with a wooden structure and its walls usually have 2″x4″ studs, although this may vary depending on the type of wall.
Mobile homes typically have drywall covering the wood structure, Although the mobile homes are designed and built with the criteria of being lightweight, the drywall panels used are 1/4 inch, drywall is used to stiffen the structure and cover the wood structure, but is sufficiently strong to support a shiplap sheathing, drywall and shiplap go well together.
Among the positives of shiplap siding, the interior of a mobile home is the aesthetic addition, but one must also take into account the weight that could come with adding an additional siding material to the mobile home.
Although the weight of the shiplap may not actually represent much, mobile homes themselves can be quite heavy, weighing up to 10,000 pounds, and much more in larger mobile homes.
However, the more items you add, the heavier the house will be.
How much weight is added to a mobile home with shiplap siding?
A 1″x8 “x12” piece of pine shiplap weighs approximately 22 pounds (10 kilograms), in an exemplary case that you are going to cover a wall, this piece covers 96 square feet (8 “x12”), that is to say, that 96 square feet of shiplap weigh 22 pounds.
Knowing this, in the case that you need to know how much a shiplap siding can weigh for several walls, just get the area of the walls, let’s say for example that you have a wall of 20.97 feet by 13.45 feet, this area would be 282 square feet (20.97×13.45).
Those 282 square feet to be clad with shiplap would require 3 pieces of shiplap (282/96) and the weight that would be added would be 66 pounds (29.9 kilograms) (22×3).
That amount of weight is really very little in relation to the other elements of a mobile home, but this should be taken into account in case a lot of areas is going to be covered with shiplap.
Please note that this calculation is made with 1 “x8 “x12” pieces of shiplap, in the case that another size is used, the result would be slightly different.
Mobile homes can be customized
It is possible to build a mobile home, but in reality, there are companies with a lot of experience in the manufacture of mobile homes, these companies already have the distribution plant of many models, as well as the siding materials that will be used in the house.
But also, if you are interested in acquiring a mobile home with a manufacturing company, there is the possibility to customize the layout plan and in some cases, it is also possible to request changes in some siding, as long as these changes comply with the established safety requirements.
You can call a mobile home manufacturing company and ask for the possibility of siding the mobile home with shiplap, in case the answer is positive, this is a great advantage because the work will be in the hands of professional people who know very well what they do.
Comments from users with mobile homes
As I mentioned at the beginning of the topic, I asked the question in a social network group of people who have mobile homes and tiny houses about the possibility of shiplap siding, I received several positive responses.
One person commented that he had clad the ceiling of his bathroom with shiplap in tongue and groove style, others contributed ideas on how to find the wood studs that are in the walls with a stud finder to be able to attach the shiplap pieces.
One mobile homeowner named James Edwards gave a very important tip:
“Very carefully, smaller studs mean your MEPs (Mechanical-Electrical-Plumbing) are easier to hit, and then you have a major problem. I wouldn’t recommend DIYing it without removing the paneling or drywall first so you can locate all your MEPs.
One brad or staple through an electric wire can burn the whole thing down- I’ve seen it first hand on a multi-million dollar house, and I’ve fought fires on mobile homes (they burn much faster), you don’t want that incident in a mobile home.
Plus there’s a huge upside to opening your walls, you can spot any existing issues, add insulation, or add a vapor barrier or radiant barrier which will seal off your insulated walls from leaching insulation or collecting dust between your siding gaps- especially if creating a faux shiplap.”
The problem with the studs in mobile homes is that they are not all located at the same distance, and they are not all 2 “x4”, in general, the studs used in this type of house are 2 “x4″ separated at 16”, but in some low-cost houses they use 2 “x3”, and in the interior walls of some models of houses that are partition walls and are not load-bearing walls could be 2 “x2″ and separated at 24”.
This variation in the location of studs in the walls of mobile homes could make the task of fixing shiplap something complicated and dangerous because of what James said above, this should be taken as a remodeling process to be done by a qualified person or company to avoid disasters.
In case you decide to do the project yourself, it is not such a complicated task, make sure you can locate the studs on the wall, it could be with a stud finder as I mentioned previously.