If you have kids or pets, you probably have some stains or smudges on the walls in your home. Here’s a few tips to help clean painted walls without damaging them.
First, know what type of paint is on your wall. This is very important because semi-gloss paints can handle washing and scrubbing, but flat, eggshell and satin paint finishes aren’t as durable and might rub off if you scrub too hard or use an abrasive cleaner (flat, eggshell and satin paints are most common paints on interior walls, whereas semi-gloss and gloss paints are most commonly used for trim and woodwork).
Before you begin cleaning your walls, use the brush attachment on your vacuum or a dusting brush to remove any surface dirt and dust. And place extra towels on the floor along the wall or baseboards to stop excess water from dripping onto the floor.
To remove light smudges and stains, try the mildest cleaner first – water. You might be surprised to see some wall smudges lift by just using clean water and a clean sponge. If that doesn’t work, step it up a notch by using warm water and a little bit of dish soap. If Dawn dish soap can clean oil soaked birds, it could remove many dirt stains on your home’s walls.
If just warm water and soap doesn’t do the job, try this homemade wall cleaning solution:
1/4 cup of ammonia
1/2 cup of white vinegar
1/4 cup of baking soda
One gallon warm water
Wipe the solution onto the wall stains with a damp sponge, then dry the wall thoroughly with another clean, dry towel to prevent streaks and water damage.
For extra stubborn stains, mix baking soda and water into a paste and rub it over the stain, then rinse with clean water and wipe dry.
When cleaning your walls, always use two buckets, one with the cleaning solution and one with clean rinse water, and keep clean, dry towels at hand. Don’t leave the walls wet.
With a little elbow grease and common household ingredients, you can keep your home’s walls looking sparkling new.
Featured photo by Kristin Brown