5 easy steps for cleaning walls

July 28, 2015

Marks appear on walls from two main sources: hands and airborne particles. Grubby little fingers and fireplaces are prime suspects. Here is a step-by-step guide to washing walls.

5 easy steps for cleaning walls

1. Dust walls

Use a lamb's wool duster, or to reach higher spots and ceilings wrap a microfibre dust cloth or clean, white cloth around a broom and dust with that.

2. Remove spots

  • Rub gently with an art gum eraser, available from arts and crafts or office supply stores, with melamine foam like Magic Eraser, or with a paste made from baking soda and water.
  • Use mineral turpentine or white spirit on grease and WD-40 (all available from hardware stores) on crayon marks.
  • Use methylated spirits on ink or felt-tip pen marks. Apply cleansers to the cloth, not the wall, and test on an inconspicuous area first.

3. Three cleaning solutions

Wash walls that are painted or covered with vinyl paper with any of the following mixtures:

• 250 ml (1 cup) of borax (available from supermarkets) and 30 ml (2 tbs) of dishwashing liquid in 4 litres (4 quarts) of warm water.

•250 ml (1 cup)(available from supermarkets), 5 ml (1 tsp) of dishwashing liquid and 4 litres (4 quarts)of water.

• If you're washing before applying new paint, a good cleaner to use is sugar soap, available from hardware and paint stores. Keep the cleaning solution in one bucket and plain water for rinsing in another. To protect the floor, use a drop cloth.

4. Keep water from running down your arms

When arms are raised wrap rags around your wrists and hold them on with rubber bands.

5. Work your way up

  • Apply cleaning solution over a small area at the bottom of the wall.
  • Wash, using circular strokes.
  • Rinse thoroughly with plain water.
  • Dry a freshly washed part of wall with a towel.
  • Move up the wall to clean the next area.
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