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What to do with Masonite walls/ceilings?

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What to do with Masonite walls/ceilings?

Hello everyone,


First time here and zero building experience so please bear with me. We’ve just bought a new home (1960’s weatherboard exterior old Queenslander, single story elevated) and we’re looking for ideas as to what to do with the internal walls/ceilings. They’re Masonite (apparently there’s definitely no asbestos anywhere except the bathroom, which we’re getting reno’d next year) - and although we know we want to replace them, we’re not sure what with. 

We’ve spoken to a four or five different carpenters/builders/plasterers and the options we’ve been given so far are:


1. take out all the Masonite and plasterboard it, new skirting and cornice

2. plasterboard over the Masonite (even though we were told by a different plasterer that that simply isn’t possible), new skirting and cornice

3. Install VJ panels over the Masonite.

We’re open to plastered walls or VJ’s, both of which would look nice given the character of the house. The VJ option is cheaper but not by a huge amount.  


Does anyone have any experience with this sort of renovation? What would you recommend?

Our budget is about $10k, and none of the various quotes so far have been above that. 

Thanks in advance!


Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: What to do with Masonite walls/ceilings?

Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community @gralton. It's tremendous to have you join us and many thanks for your questions.


Ultimately it would come down to cost. Preferably the best option would be to have the masonite removed and plasterboard installed. What was the difference in that compared to plasterboard over the masonite? What is the insulation like in the house at the moment? You could install new insulation and assess for any underlying issues as well if the masonite is coming off.


I would imagine a plasterers concern with going over the masonite is how smooth and level the surfaces are. Their final job will reflect the underlying surface and if the masonite sheets are not perfectly flat it will be more effort for them to achieve a great result. I've also heard that masonite is not rigid enough to support plaster as it is somewhat flexible. The movement of the house and masonite can end up cracking the plaster joints.


Let me mention @Brad to see if he has any opinions on the better option.




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