Tips from the Pros for Keeping your Painted Walls Clean

Tips from the Pros for Keeping your Painted Walls Clean

A freshly painted wall can make a room come to life. Unfortunately, it doesn't take much for those walls to slowly become drab, again. Follow these from the pros to keep your painted walls clean; they will make your home feel more attractive and welcoming.

Give the Paint Plenty of Time to Dry

If you have recently had a room painted, then you will want to give the paint plenty of time to dry. Most companies say that their paints take 24 hours or less to dry. That's a little misleading, though. After a day, the paint is dry enough for you to add a second coat. It's not dry enough for you to use the room daily.

For the best results, you should let paint sit undisturbed for at least two weeks. This gives it time to fully set. You can still use the room, but you should make sure you:

  • Do not touch the walls
  • Keep furniture pulled away from the walls
  • Do not let unsupervised children come into the room

After a couple weeks, you can start to use it normally. The paint should have set well enough that it will resist any smudges, fingerprints, and other imperfections.

Wash Dirty Areas Immediately

Short of closing off a room for two weeks, it's often difficult to prevent all smudges and fingerprints. They seem to show up no matter what you do.

If you do notice any type of dirt or smudge, you should wash it immediately. The sooner you wash it, the easier it is to fix. Ideally, you can remove the problem with nothing more than a clean, damp rag. You don't even need to add a cleaning solution. Just wipe carefully until it's clean.

After the paint has set, you can take a slightly more aggressive approach by washing with soap and water. You should still try to wash as gently as possible, though, since it's always possible to damage the paint.

Big Messes May Require Professional Cleaning

Unfortunately, not all messes are easy to clean. Walls can get very dirty over time, especially if you have children or pets. No matter how many times you try to explain that the hallway wall isn't a canvas, kids just want to paint on it. Big messes can also happen in kitchens, where splattered sauce can add an unwanted aesthetic to your walls.

When you have a big mess, you may need to call in a pro. Professionals will know which cleaning product is best for your particular mess and the type of paint on your wall. Using the wrong products could do more harm than good, so it's best not to make this a DIY project.

The good news is that professional cleaning is usually affordable. Just get quotes from reliable cleaners in your area to find a few within your budget.

Most of the time it's pretty easy to keep your painted walls clean. When the mess becomes too much, though, it's best to recognize that you need help from a professional.

Image via Flickr by NMR Photo

Collegiate Painters