What Can I Use Instead of Quarter Round? Alternatives that You Can Use!

Updated: | Author: Brad Javernick | Affiliate links may be present.

Quarter round isn’t the only option and may not even be necessary. There are many alternatives to quarter round, and no matter what you choose, your home interior is going to look classy.

The purpose of quarter round is to cover the small space where the baseboard meets the floor. It can help prevent dirt from accumulating, but there are alternative options. Shoe molding comes in a variety of shapes, including flat, square, found, and more. Flat baseboard trim is a smooth and flat option that doesn’t require any additions to it if installed properly.

Quarter Round

Quarter round is a long and skinny strip of (usually) wood. It is used simply to cover the space where the baseboard and floor meet. Covering up the space is a good idea to keep insects and dirt out.

Quarter round and its alternatives can be made of wood, medium-density fiberwood (MDF), polyvinyl chloride PVC, or polystyrene.

Wood is the most common choice, but PVC and polystyrene are waterproof and don’t tend to warp over time. Wood and MDF can be grooved on one side to prevent warping and increase flexibility.

Alternatives to Quarter Round

Since it is only used for covering a small space by the floor, you can use the following alternatives.

Square Shoe Molding

Shoe molding serves the same purpose as quarter round, except it comes in a variety of shapes and cuts. The material options are the same, but shoe molding can offer many different looks, depending on how it is cut.

It could come in square, which would probably be appealing to someone who doesn’t like the round look that quarter round provides.

Flat Shoe Molding

Flat Shoe Molding is quite thin, usually no thicker than 1 inch. It goes over the bottom of a flat baseboard. This option is tempting for covering that unwanted space between the baseboard and floor while also maintaining simplicity.

In addition to square and flat, there are many other shapes and cuts available for shoe molding. To name a few on Home Depot’s website, there are “Finished Elegance,” “House of Fara,” and “Alexandria Molding.”

Flat Baseboard Trim

Baseboards are long boards that cover where the wall meets the floor. They usually range from 3 – 8 inches tall and ½ – 1 inch thick. Like quarterround or shoe molding, these are usually made from wood or medium-density fiberwood (MDF).

Trim is a term used to describe any trimming or baseboards in the home. It includes the door casing, window casing, panel molding, or crown molding.

Flat baseboard or trim means that it is flat on the visible side. It can be used without quarter round or shoe molding and offers a sophisticated look that can bring uniformity into your home.

After the floor is laid, flat baseboard trim can be added as close to the floorboards as possible. The only reason you would leave 1 inch of space is if you plan to add carpet.

In Conclusion

Quarter round or shoe molding of any kind is not completely required in your home. There are lots of homes that do not sport this additional strip of material. When applying baseboards, consider how closely lined up it comes to the floor.

Installing the strip of material can help keep out dirt and prevent insects from sneaking around. There are lots of options for getting the look you want.

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About Brad Javernick

Brad is a licensed home inspector and the editor of Home Oomph. He's a massive DIYer, and loves to take on new home renovation projects!

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