How to Safely Clean Walls Without Removing Paint

Our proven 3-step method for cleaning walls without removing paint. Along with bonus tips for cleaning marks and scuffs from walls without removing paint.

The walls in your home can gradually become dirty from everyday things such as fingerprints, sharpie markers, crayons, and pets. Whether you have white walls, colored walls, or a painted feature wall, it’s important to know how to clean these integral parts of your home properly to avoid damaging the paintwork. 

We’re sharing our best professional tips on how to clean walls without removing paint. If you need a hand, you can always book a professional, affordable cleaner to keep your walls and home clean at Homeaglow.

Before you start

It’s helpful to know the type of paint that’s used on your walls, as some paints can stand up to more vigorous cleaning than others. 

If your walls are painted with flat, satin, or eggshell finishes, these are the most delicate, so make sure you give them an extra gentle cleaning. 

Gloss and semi-gloss paints are designed to be a bit more durable, so you can clean these walls easily without worrying too much about chipping or removing color.

Our favorite method for cleaning walls without removing paint involves a very gentle cleaning solution that is suitable for all paint types.

You’ll need:

  • Bucket
  • Sponge
  • Clean cloths
  • Liquid dish soap
  • White vinegar

How to clean walls without removing paint

1. Dust your walls

Some of the dirt on your walls might just be dust or cobwebs on closer inspection. Make sure you give your walls a quick dust with a cloth, a Swiffer sweeper, or a long-handled broom or mop with a microfiber cloth at the end, before you start washing.

Start at the top of the walls and dust downwards in vertical strokes, paying attention to the baseboards as you work.

2. Make a DIY wall cleaner

When it comes to choosing the best solution to clean walls without removing paint, simple is always best.

We recommend using plain old dish detergent and warm water for the best results. This is a gentle alternative to harsh commercial cleaners, and it can extend the longevity of your paintwork. It’s safe for all paint types including flat, satin, eggshell, and matte finishes.

All you’ll need is a bucket of warm water with a few squirts of liquid dish soap added, and you’re ready to clean.

If you don’t want to use soap, you can replace it with white vinegar instead, which has natural cleaning and antibacterial properties. Simply add ¼ to ½ a cup of vinegar to your bucket of water.

3. Wash your walls down gently

Dip a clean sponge into your soapy water mix, and wring it out. Begin cleaning your walls from the top down, working in small sections. Rinse the sponge out as necessary while you’re cleaning. 

You can also use a sponge dipped in clean water to follow up your soapy sponge if you have time. This will remove any remaining soapy residue and dirt that may have been left behind.

Remember to wash your walls down gently to avoid removing paint as you go, and pay attention to high-traffic areas such as door jambs and light switches.

Once you’re done, leave the walls to air dry.

Stubborn marks and scuffs

If you’ve found an extra stubborn spot on your painted wall that you can’t clean off with soap and water, you can try these methods to remove it:

  • Magic Eraser — wet your magic eraser and rub it gently on the scuff mark until it’s gone
  • Baking soda and vinegar — mix these into a thick paste in a small bowl and apply to the mark on your wall with a cloth. Leave for a minute or two, and then wipe the paste away gently with a fresh cloth. 
  • Rubbing alcohol — this can quickly remove marks from a painted wall, but proceed carefully, as it can also remove your paint if you’re not careful. Wet a cloth with the alcohol, and apply to the paintwork. Rub very gently in a circular motion until the mark has gone. Finishing by cleaning and drying the area with a fresh cloth.

How to keep your painted walls looking their best

Now you’ve cleaned your walls and they’re looking fresh and bright again, here are some tips to keep them cleaner for longer:

Spot clean 

Wipe away insect spots, scuff marks, and fingerprints as soon as you notice them.

Vacuum gently

Vacuuming is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to scuffing and marking painted walls. As you move around, it’s easy to ding the walls with your vacuum or with the furniture you’re shifting. So take care on vacuuming day, and your walls will thank you.

Wash your walls regularly

We recommend giving your walls a good clean every quarter. But if you or somebody in your home smokes inside, you should wash your walls every month to prevent yellowing of the paint and keep your home smelling fresh.

Touch up if needed

Despite your best cleaning efforts, paint chips and scuffs can still happen to your walls. Always keep a small pot of matching paint on hand to quickly touch up the walls in high-traffic areas of your home if needed.

Ready to clean your painted walls?

Dusting and cleaning walls is never top of mind when cleaning your own home. But it’s a simple way to ensure everything looks extra fresh when you’re finished. 

With a little regular care and a simple soap and water solution, it’s easy to keep all the painted walls in your home looking great for years to come.

If this feels like a chore, you can always let the professionals handle it! The Homeaglow team is always available to keep your walls and home clean. Find and book your perfect cleaner online today.

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