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The Thorny Task of Cleaning Flat Painted Walls

Cleaning Flat Painted Walls is a Tough Job!
Done with a Gentle Touch.

When choosing the type of paint to use in your home’s interior, a good question to ask is: How difficult is it to clean? There are several varieties of paint that you can choose from and none are as problematic as flat paint, when it comes to cleaning. Follow the simple instructions below and you should have good results. Be sure not to overdo cleaning by rubbing to hard or using scrubbing brushes to remove stains and dirt.

The issue of cleaning aside, flat paint is very popular for interior house painting and does offer several benefits. In fact, flat paint is one of the standard choices for interior walls. Some of the desirable attributes of flat paint include:

· It does a great job of hiding imperfections which are on the wall prior to painting it as well as afterward.

· Flat paint gives surfaces a smoother, more uniform appearance than what may actually exist.

· Small scratches and nicks on a wall painted in flat paint are hardly noticeable because they blend in.

If the benefits offered by flat paint make it the right choice for you, it’s important to know how to properly clean flat-painted walls. The porous texture of the paint makes cleaning difficult partly because it holds onto the dirt. But stains not dealt with get worse. So it’s best to face the challenge of keeping your flat-painted walls as clean as possible.

Supplies you’ll need may include: Water, clean soft rags, soft sponge, a bucket, laundry detergent, and spray foam cleanser. Here’s a step-by-step guide to cleaning flat-painted walls, though all may not be required:

You probably have everything you need right under the kitchen sink or in your cleaning closet space.

· You’ll want to use the gentlest cleaning solution possible. So start out by using a clean soft rag or sponge that’s soaked in warm water and wrung out so that it’s damp. Wipe the stain either until it’s completely gone or you have determined that more than water is needed to remove the stain.


· Try one of the versions of melamine-foam-based white sponges (“Magic Eraser” is one brand) –these are least likely to mar flat-painted surfaces, but due to their ablative action (they wear away) may leave a white residue on darker colors. Just follow them with an absorbent WHITE towel, using a gentle blotting action.

· Next, you’ll try foam cleanser. But you need to venture carefully. Test the cleaner on a flat-painted area that’s not easily seen. Make sure that it’s not too harsh of a cleanser that will only create a worse mess. Once you’re sure the foam product is safe on the wall, follow the directions; this usually means spraying it on and leaving it on for a period of time before wiping it off.

· If the spray foam doesn’t do a satisfactory job of cleaning your flat-painted wall, you can try using laundry soap, which is usually an even harsher formula. To use the detergent: Put a gallon of warm water in your bucket and add 1 tablespoon of laundry detergent. Stir until the laundry soap is thoroughly dissolved. Test it in an inconspicuous area to be sure it doesn’t cause any damage to the flat paint. If it does cause damage, your best two solutions are to leave the stain as is or re-paint your wall.

· Don’t be tempted to use scrubbing brushes or harsh cleaners. The dirt may be cleaned away, but you will end up with conspicuous spots where the paint has been polished with the cleaners. These areas that have been scuffed up will attract dirt more readily now and you will end up with a worse looking condition for sure.

· Do all sponge or rag cleaning with a gentle circular motion of affected areas, then wash down the entire wall to remove soapy residue and reduce the chances that patchiness of cleaned areas will show when wall is dry.

When interior flat-painted walls have reached a certain point in their life, the best answer will simply be to repaint the interior walls of your home. We would be honored if you consider Franklin Painting for that interior house painting work when the time comes!

To really understand what a problematic task it is to clean flat-painted walls, it helps to know, in contrast, how simple it is to clean other types of paint.

Satin paint is also known as eggshell or low-luster paint. This type produces a hint of sheen, giving it a more lustrous look than flat paint. The sheen creates a bit more depth in a room and gives a feel of warmth. Satin paint is ideal for any room in your home; and, yes, it’s easy to clean.

Semi-gloss paint or Gloss paint is the toughest and shiniest type of paint. It’s not as good when it comes to hiding imperfections, but it is the very easiest to clean, which is why it’s the type used most frequently on baseboards and door frames.

Franklin Painting LLC – Call us Toll Free at 877-646-7774
or at our main office number 860-678-7701
2 Eastview Drive, Farmington, CT 06032

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