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Best Cleaner for Painted Walls

Once you have done all of the work it takes to paint your walls a beautiful color, you want to make sure it lasts as long as possible. With some simple cleaning maintenance tips and knowledge on what is the best cleaner for painted walls, your walls will continue to have that just-painted look for years to come. You don’t have to spend a lot of extra effort, just as long as a part of your normal cleaning routine includes some wall maintenance.

So, while you’re vacuuming the floors remember to take care of the walls too. With a brush attachment attached to your vacuum, you can easily clean your walls. You can pull a lot of the dirt or any cobwebs down with the suction feature. After, go over the walls with a high-quality dust mop. The Champion Old Fashioned Dust Mop is a great choice for this task!

As soon as you notice pesky fingerprints or smudge marks on the wall you should clean them off. Avoid using too much water on walls with paint or wallpaper when you’re cleaning them. Sometimes life happens and there are going to be stains on the walls. The key is knowing how to wash walls fast by using the proper wall cleaning solution. Here are some of the most common wall stains and ways to remove them.

Removing Crayon

You’ll need a dull knife, mild detergent, a soft cloth, and a dry towel. With the dull knife, you’ll rub any thick spots or chunks of excess crayon off the wall. Be careful not to dig too deep or you might accidentally scrape off the paint.

With the mild detergent product and a little water mixed, dab a clean cloth into the solution then rub the spot and the crayon should lift right up off of the wall. Then wipe it completely clean with the dry towel. Let the kids do their crafts without worrying about the cleanup as much. Don’t panic, a little crayon can be removed quite easily.

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Removing Marker/Ink

Start with a wet paper towel or baby wipe. If that doesn’t work to lift the ink, then you will need an all-purpose cleaner and a paper towel or rag. Some spray cleaners can be abrasive so be careful. Apply the cleaner to the stain. Rub it gently with the towel or rag.

Dab if it smears and then switch to a clean rag. It should start to pull the stain from the surface. If ink remains then apply extra cleaner and allow it to sit for about ten minutes. Then wipe it clean. Dyes can be a lot tougher to remove as they tend to create a deeper stain but it’s the same process.

Blue marker with open cap.
Blue marker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Removing Coffee or Wine

These stains generally aren’t very hard to remove. If you don’t catch the stains right after they happen then you will need a mild all-purpose cleaner, warm water, a cloth, and a dry towel. It’s best to check around the end and corner tables for stains and accidental spills on walls after having guests or if you have children and pets in the home.  An example of a good cleaner for this application would be the Champion Supplies Citrus Clean Multi-Purpose Cleaner.

D-Limonene is derived from the orange peel and has proven to be extremely effective at breaking down and removing difficult stains. It’s a powerful, natural grime buster. You don’t have to use a lot of it. It takes just enough to get a few bubbles worked up. Gently rub the wall and dry with a clean cloth.

The kind of paint on the walls could affect your plan of attack on how to clean them. So here are some tips for walls with different types of paint. Wallpaper can usually be wiped clean just like paint. Just remember never to use abrasive scrubbers or scourers on the walls. Ammonia and alcohol are both non-abrasive cleaners that can help get walls cleaner gently. Dabbing a bit of ammonia on a cloth will cut right through almost any dirt you rub it on.

Sometimes if you have paintings hanging up on white walls for quite some times, lines can form around them. In this case, use a clean rag and some alcohol to wipe these areas clean. You’ll be able to remove the dirt and it’ll dry immediately.

Cup of coffee.
Coffee can cause stains, and it is a good idea to deal with these stains soon after they happen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do walls get so dirty?

Before figuring out what is the best thing to wash walls with, we should try to understand why our walls get so dirty in the first place. Over time the ceiling and walls in your house can get very dingy without you really even noticing. Then you move a picture and see the discoloration on the paint around where it was hanging and think “is it really that dirty in here?” Don’t feel bad, it happens to everyone over time.

High humidity levels in a bathroom can cause water streaking down the walls. Water from roof leaks can also cause walls to stain. Moisture begins to condense on the colder parts of a wall. Then dust begins to stick to the moisture on the surface. Mildew can form on it also. Dark areas form especially on drywall seams.

Dust and dirt in the air and even soot all begin to accumulate on the ceiling and walls. Soot can be in the air from wood-burning stoves, dirty furnace filters, indoor smoking, and burning candles. It can leave stubborn grime on everything. Soot is not safe to breathe in and it is oily and smears easily. Cooking in the kitchen can also leave a deep residue and grease stains on the walls and everything else. Spot cleaning in the kitchen is important, especially focusing on walls surrounding the stove area.

Baseboards can get extremely dusty. Debris settles easily on top of them. It doesn’t take long before they will need a good dusting and washing. It’s a good idea to perform maintenance on them regularly with a dust mop and give them an occasional wipedown. Vacuuming them monthly will really help keep them looking good.

It is a good idea to wash all of the corners and walls twice a year along with the windows and window coverings. Dust-mopping the walls and baseboards regularly will simply save a lot of work later. The longer the dust builds up the harder it is to clean off.

Animals in the household can wreak havoc on your walls as well. Cats and dogs can be guilty of hiking up their leg and causing urine damage. They often scratch and scrape at the doors and walls with their nails and sharp claws. If pets want to go outside or want to follow you into another room they might scratch and damage the door trying to get through. Pet dander, oils, and dirt from their coat can soil the walls and door frames that they rub against.

Pet cages can also start to chip the paint off of the walls. Some dogs can even try to chew on walls and trim. If pets are doing damage to a door or wall too heavily you may need to install a plastic guard to preserve it from further ruining. Most cats love to lean on and dig their claws into the walls and furniture. These areas will need to be sanded, spackled, and repainted to repair them.

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What paint will work best?

Different types of paints work best for certain areas of the home. They each have different levels of coverage and shine. Matte finish paint has a flat color and a low shine to it. It provides excellent coverage on walls with fewer coats of paint used. It’s not highly durable paint. It can easily be ruined by cleaning chemicals. It’s best used in low traffic areas that won’t be touched too often like ceilings. An eggshell finish has a low shine to it.

This type of paint provides great coverage and camouflages the rough spots very well. It has slightly more luster than a matte finish. It’s a bit more durable and is good to use in low to medium traffic areas of the house.

A satin finish is commonly used because it has a velvety shine. It’s much easier to clean than matte or eggshell finishes. It’s great for rooms that get used often. This finish does show brush marks a bit more easily than other types so just be careful while doing any touch-ups. Semi-glossy paint finishes have a highly reflective sheen.

It’s shiny and useful in rooms with high moisture. It’s also good for trim and baseboards and hides imperfections very well. High gloss paint is the shiniest and the most durable and washable. It’s great for cabinets and can withstand being cleaned daily.

Using wall treatments is another way to help protect your paint from stains and damage. It is a clear topcoat that you apply after painting a wall to protect it from stains. It protects the finish and helps maintain the durability of the paint.

It won’t scuff because it keeps the surface sealed well and it can be wiped off easily. This is a great option for preserving antique wallpaper in various rooms. The protectant keeps the vintage wallpaper dry. It’s best not to use vinegar on paint because it’s an acidic liquid.

Cans of paint.
Different types of paint are ideal for different areas of the home.

What’s the best cleaner for painted walls?

Steam cleaners that use dry steam can be great for washing walls. You should always test on an inconspicuous area before using it on the entire wall to be sure it’s going to work well. Steam cleaning can really make a huge improvement to the interior of your house. The high temperature loosens the grime so that it can be wiped away easily. It’s a great cleaning tool. Hiring cleaners to help is an option but DIY methods are much cheaper.

First on the tips list for wall washing is to protect the floors and furniture. There are a few housekeeping hacks that can help with this task. You can do these tasks weekly or less often to try to keep things clean and consistently work on quality organization.  Big cleaning projects and remodeling or renovating all pose risks of damaging other items in the room and the flooring, so take the proper precautions.

Before you have done any type of renovation or washed or painted walls you should remove or cover everything inside the room. Protect any glass if you’re planning on painting near it as well. Protect the furniture and floors in areas that you will be washing with drop cloths to protect against any dripping.

Remove as much of the dust and debris that can be cleaned using a dust mop. Always test a small inconspicuous area of the wall with your cleaning solution first. Once you know it’s safe you can use it to wash the walls. You don’t want to soak the wall with too much soap if it might damage it. The colors of your paint reflect your style and decorating ideas. You want your home decor to look crisp and fresh. You don’t want to try to display a beautiful bouquet against a dingy wall. You want your holiday decorations to pop, not be outshined by wall stains.

Wash the wall using circular strokes, then use clean water to rinse the dirt away. Use dry, clean cloths or towels to wipe away the residue all the way down to the base of the walls. Your rooms will look bright and fresh after washing the walls. Champion Citrus Clean Multi-Purpose Cleaner is non-abrasive and will keep those walls shining.

When cleaning the walls, start with removing as much dust as possible before you begin. It’s a good idea to mop the floors before washing the walls to catch anything that floated down so it doesn’t end up back on the walls. We suggest using the Champion Old Fashioned Dust Mop to get all of the dust and cobwebs down. Each electrostatic-charged strand grabs all of the funky stuff without scratching up the walls. It works great on architectural challenges like high ceilings and dusty lighting as well.

Textured walls will hold in more dirt than other surfaces. The rough texture can tear sponges apart so using a vacuum to remove dust from these areas works best. Get a cloth that won’t rip easily as you wipe. Get a clean bucket for your water and cleaning solution mixture.

Mix up a mild diluted detergent like Champion Citrus Clean Multi-Purpose Cleaner. Use the durable cloth to apply the solution to the walls in a gentle rubbing motion and really get it in the grooves. This textured style sometimes requires other materials like a small soft brush to clean the texture the best and to give it a real makeover. Use clean water to rinse the wall or ceiling and then just wipe it clean with a dry towel.

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What about exterior walls?

Paint on walls outdoors can form mildew moreso than interior paint. Sometimes plants and shrubs up against the house can cause a lack of airflow. They block out enough light that mildew can easily grow on the walls in these areas. Green or brown algae or moss will also grow on the side of a building. Using a non-abrasive all-purpose cleaner for walls like the Champion Ultra Concentrated Degreaser cuts through all of the buildup better than water alone.

If mildew or algae is beginning to grow on the outside of the house it might give it a bad appearance. It will start to look dark or even green or brown. It can grow in patches and spread all over the walls. It will make a house look slimy and dirty. Giving the place a thorough washing will get rid of unsightly mildew and revive it.

White paint is affected by aging. It turns yellow over time. This is a natural progression but can be unsightly. This type of discoloration cannot be washed off. If your paint color has yellowed or changed over the years it is probably best to think about repainting the place.

The Ultimate Grease Slayer.

Best Way To Wash Walls Painted With Latex Paint

Use warm water and a non-abrasive all-purpose cleaner to clean the walls. Wash areas around where the light switches and doors are as these are frequently touched spots. For stains that just won’t come off such as fingerprints or scuffs, you can try to make a paste out of baking soda and water.

If that still doesn’t work, then put a little bit of rubbing alcohol on a cloth and gently rub the spot to try to get it clean. Regular cleaning of the walls will help with these stubborn stains. These extra steps would only be necessary with regular cleaners, since the Champion Ultra Concentrated Degreaser is excellent at getting rid of even the toughest stains.

Best Way To Wash Walls Painted With Oil-Based Paint

Walls painted with oil-based paint can be washed similarly to those painted with latex paint. But if you have stubborn fingerprints mucking up your walls to clean off you should try to use a mixture of liquid dish detergent mixed in warm water and white vinegar. Place the mixture on the wall and allow it to sit for ten minutes. Then blot it to remove the stain.

Remember any walls that are textured will catch lots of dust so they will probably require a deeper cleaning. Using borax mixed with water to deep clean the walls is another thing you could try.

Walking by a yellow painted wall.
Learning the best way to wash walls can keep your painted walls displaying a freshly painted look at all times.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It saves a lot of headaches if we know the best cleaner for painted walls and how to wash walls fast. It’s always best to clean off any spills or accidents as soon after it happens as possible, but if you can’t that doesn’t mean you’ll have to repaint the walls. It’s important to remember to not use a lot of water on the wall and choose durable and washable paint. Clean walls at last!

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