5 Tips for Cleaning Painted Walls Without Ruining or Damaging the Paint Finish


Dirty walls are unpleasant and unsightly. Hand-prints, spills, grease stains in the kitchen, crayon drawings from the kids (however artistic they may be – you still probably want them cleaned). The good news is cleaning painted walls is something any homeowner can do.

How to Clean painted walls without ruining the finish. Five tips from CraftPro.

Home Maintenance: Cleaning Painted Walls

cleaning painted walls maintains the beauty of your home interiorLet me start out by saying this: as a painting contractor I would like nothing more than for you to completely neglect your walls and then call me to come repaint them. But enough people do that already, so for those of you that care about the condition of your painted walls: this article is for you. The only problem is that cleaning painted walls is a challenge and it can be a bit tricky. Not all types of paint can stand up to different methods of cleaning. It is therefore important to know the exact type of paint that was used on your home’s walls in order to be able to clean them properly. Failing to clean your walls can result in a very aesthetically displeasing home that ruin the overall look of the whole interior of your painted surfaces, and you want to maintain your homes’ beauty, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this. Therefore, cleaning painted walls – and actually knowing exactly how to do it – is important. Below are five tips for cleaning painted walls and maintaining their fresh and brilliant look. When you go to clean your walls you probably worry about scuffing or fading the paint. That’s smart, not paranoid. If your interior painting contractor used the high quality products and meticulous techniques that we use then it shouldn’t be a problem. Follow the advice below to keep your walls clean and to extend the time between paint jobs.

without cleaning painted walls homes can get dirty like this1. Regular, Frequent Wall Cleaning

The first thing you should do is to take regular care of your walls. Perform a preventive cleaning every now and again and don’t let them get too dirty. See that little stain on the wall? Don’t let it sit there till the next time you’re planning on cleaning the walls. Be proactive and, using the tips below, remove it immediately. Pay special attention to areas that are prone to getting dirty fast, such as walls near sinks and stoves. Cleaning painted walls in the kitchen should be easy, because eggshell paint is used in kitchens and bathrooms, and eggshell paint is very durable. In most cases it has a mildew-resistant additive.

2. Dusting: the Easiest Method for Cleaning Painted Walls

In order to maintain a fresh and clean look of your painted walls, you should dust them regularly. This will also prevent you from spending a lot of time on cleaning them thoroughly at some point. Vacuum your walls, using a special attachment with a soft brush. Then use a cloth sprayed with a detergent used for dusting. Make sure you wipe all of the fingerprints and other stains that easily appear on the walls. It’s better not to use water, since the detergent is enough.

3. Latex Paint

cleaning painted walls when kids draw on them with crayonIt makes a difference what kind of paint was used on the walls in your house. If they are painted with latex paint – which has made oil-based paint all but obsolete for walls – then clean them using warm water applied on a sponge. You can dissolve an all-purpose soap in the water. Use a soft sponge dampened in the solution to gently wipe the dirt off the walls. Pay attention to high-access areas, such as light switches. Then use a sponge dampened in water only and rinse. Don’t use too much water and make sure you don’t wet the electrical connections on the walls. For tough stains, you can make a solution using baking soda and water, apply it on a sponge and scrub. Top-shelf paints will not fade from this – more on that in tip number 5.

4. Oil-Based Paint

No one uses oil-based paint on walls anymore, but just in case… To clean walls painted with oil-based paint, make a solution of 1/4 teaspoon white vinegar, 1 liter of water and 1 teaspoon of dish detergent. Apply the home-made detergent on a soft sponge and wipe the walls. Oil-based paint – in the rare occasions it is used – is usually found on woodwork. You can safely use a soap-and-water solution because oil-based paint is extremely durable and because water won’t damage the oil paint.

5. When Cleaning Painted Walls: Test A Small Area First

Most modern types of paint are washable and safe to clean. High-end paint, such as Benjamin Moore’s Aura can be scrubbed and cleaned in any finish after allowing the paint three weeks to cure completely. However, no matter the paint product, when cleaning painted walls it’s a good idea to test the solution on a small hidden area and see how the paint will react to it. If you see that some of the paint remains on the sponge, don’t continue cleaning in this way but use a vacuum cleaner and a dry cloth to wipe the wall.

Cleaning painted walls at home is something many people forget to do and end up seeing grimy, dirty and bad-looking walls in their homes – walls that need to be repainted. To prevent this from happening in your home, take regular care of your walls and follow our tips on how to clean them safely and maintain the beauty of your home.


This article was co-authored by Richard D’Angelo, CraftPro Contracting’s founder and owner-operator and July Minor. July is a passionate blogger and writer. The company she currently works for offers cleaning services and thanks to that she has some fresh and great ideas.


Northern New Jersey Residents: Is cleaning painted walls in your home not going to cut it? Are your walls in very bad shape? No matter how often you clean them, your walls will eventually need a paint job. I make sure that CraftPro uses high-end materials and proper surface preparation to execute professional paint jobs that are beautiful and durable. Use the form below to contact me about painting your home. Even if it’s just for a question and not a request for a job. I’m here to help.


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