Over time, your home’s walls can become discolored and dingy. Everything from greasy smudges to scuffs and more can cover the walls. When present, these discolorations and marks can dramatically impact décor and ambiance. Even after the rest of your home is thoroughly cleaned, space may still look dirty because of the walls. While you may be able to wipe away some of the filth with a damp cloth, you will need to take special steps to fully remove all of the grime without damaging your flat paint walls.
Determine If You Have Flat Paint Walls
Before you can properly clean painted walls, you need to determine what type of paint is on them. The term “flat paint” does not describe the texture on the wall. It describes the sheen of the paint. If you did not select the paint for your home’s walls yourself, you may not know if your paint has a flat or matte finish. In addition to a matte finish, paint is available with eggshell, satin, semi-gloss, and high-gloss finishes.
A flat finish does not reflect light well, and this unique property makes it perfect for camouflaging imperfections on the drywall as well as some of the dirt that may accumulate on it. However, compared to glossier finishes, walls covered by flat paint may be more difficult to clean. If you cannot see light reflecting off the wall from a variety of angles, you likely are dealing with flat paint.
Gather Your Cleaning Supplies
There are a few different methods that you can use to clean walls with flat paint, and the best method will depend on the type of dirt on the walls. While you can and should start your cleaning project off with fresh water and a clean cloth, you may want to pull together all of your cleaning supplies upfront. This can make it easier for you to target specific areas fully before you move on to other dirty areas. In addition to having a bowl of clean water and a clean cloth or sponge, you may also want to have white vinegar, an eraser sponge, liquid dish soap, and a foam cleansing product nearby.
Clean with Water and Vinegar
Clean water and some elbow grease may be all that it takes to remove some of the dirt on your walls. This may be particularly true when the mess on the wall is fresh. Keep in mind that some elements can penetrate into flat paint and may require more effort if they are not targeted immediately. If cleaning with freshwater does not work, dab white vinegar directly into your cloth or sponge before targeting the dirt and stains on the wall.
Use Stronger Cleaning Methods
If water and vinegar do not produce the pristine results you want to see, pull out the eraser sponge. This should only be used for cleaning small areas of the wall. If you have stubborn stains that persist or larger areas to clean, use a store-bought cleaning agent. Simply follow the instructions on the product. If these methods do not work, you may be ready to throw in the towel. However, you should try using diluted dish soap to target the stains as a final measure.
Apply Touch-Up Paint
These steps will remove most of the grime on your walls, but you may be dismayed to discover that some stains remain. As the last option to deal with stains, apply a small amount of touch-up paint to the area if you have any extra paint available. If you choose to repaint the entire wall, consider using eggshell paint. The eggshell finish is easier to keep clean than flat paint.
Reduce Wall Grime with Spot Cleaning
Because the best time to remove smudges and stains is as soon as possible, it makes sense to spot clean your walls regularly. At Cleanzen, we offer spot cleaning services upon request. Our Philadelphia maids are happy to focus on your walls during our next visit to your home.
Cleaning spots off walls is only one of many chores that require your attention in order to keep a truly immaculate home. Our maids take pride in impressing our clients with wonderful results at each service. To request a one-time or recurring home cleaning service, contact Cleanzen today.