Ceiling panels come in 4’ x 14’ and 4’ x 16’ sheets.  They are very difficult to ship and handle because they are not a rigid product.  They are lighter than sheetrock and require less of a support system than sheetrock.  The sheets look like they are only 18 inches apart because there are battens and strips added.

This probably won’t make you very happy. 

They are not manufactured anymore.  (Product update:  There is a new product that could offer a solution.  See 4. below).

The machines to manufacture the old Modulux ceiling panels are sitting in crates in Washington State waiting for someone to purchase them and establish a new manufacturing plant.  Well folks, new homes don’t use the old style panels, so even if the machines were back up and running, there wouldn’t be enough of a market to keep the machines in operation. 

So now what?  There are three basic choices to replace the ceiling panels.  They are:

1.      Sheetrock.  This is the most popular method.  You end-up with a smooth finish without seams and you can paint it any color you want.  There is a very import point to remember about 1/2" sheetrock, it is heavy.  After you have removed the old ceiling panels, you will need to re-enforce the wood frame the sheetrock will be mounted on.  Failure to do this will just mean constant repairs and could even create more problems. Don't make the mistake of thinking that 1/2",(too heavy) or 1/4", (too flimsy), sheetrock  is your only choice.  We sell 5/8" sheetrock in pre-finished or plain that is stronger than 1/4" and lighter than 1/2"!

2.      Paneling.  Pre-finished paneling is the second method used to replace those old ceiling panels.  A lot lighter than sheetrock, you won’t need to re-enforce the wood frame.  The 4’ x 8’ panels mean seams, so they are usually staggered with battens used to cover the seams.  Not everyone likes the pattern paneling produces.

3.      Drop Ceiling.  This product can be installed ANY distance from the ceiling frame. You lose an inch or two of height, but now you can replace individual, smaller panels if you have a water problem in the future.   Because you can hang the ceiling any distance from the frame, you could add creative lighting to previously dark areas of the room, where the sheetrock and paneling do not allow this without building an additional frame.     

4.   There is a new product coming out of Canada called "OKAPLY", (pronounced OKA-PLY), that is similar in appearance to Modulux panels and comes in 4' x 7' and 4' x 12' panels.  This may present a slight problem for those of us that have 14' wide homes, but with a little creative planning, they can be made to work.  This product should be available in a few weeks.  Check back for up-dates. Here is a picture from their brochure.

There is one more way to get product to replace those old ceiling panels.  Locate a home that is scheduled for demolition and salvage the panels, re-paint them and install.

  Have a suggestion we can share with other mobile/manufactured home owners?  Please calor email us postmaster@reallyneatstuffalaska.com 

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