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How To Clean Walls with Flat Paint

Millions of Americans take pride in their home. Part of the enjoyment of having a place to call your own is to decorate it.

Each year, hundreds of billions of dollars are spent on home improvements. This covers everything from landscaping to fitting new kitchens; building a garage to painting the main bedroom.

image - How To Clean Walls with Flat Paint
How To Clean Walls with Flat Paint

There are many considerations when painting a home. You’ll want to know just how much does it cost to paint a house for a start. Then there are the different types of coats to choose from.

One consideration when selecting paint is whether it is easy to clean. This is especially important if you have pets or children in the home.

Flat paint is one popular choice. If you have this in your home, then you can be reassured that it is cleanable, but perhaps not as easy as some coatings.

So, how best to clean walls with flat paint?

What Is Flat Paint?

One of the reasons this coating is known as flat paint is because it soaks up any light that hits it. Instead of being reflective, it is flat.

You may know this type of paint as matte. It tends to have more pigment than other paints and comes in eco-friendly versions.

With everyone being more aware of the environment today, it is good to know that the paint industry has concerns too. Flat paint can come without solvents or volatile organic compounds which are harmful according to the EPA.

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Why Use Flat Paint?

You may prefer matte paint just because of the finish it gives, but it has practical uses as well as aesthetic ones.

Flat paint has more pigment which means it is excellent as a concealer. Walls that have scratches or defects such as bumps, will benefit from flat paint.

Because the paint doesn’t reflect light, it means scratches and bumps will be harder to see.

A company such as Paint Loma owned by Alain Austenfeld would recommend flat paint for areas such as the dining room, or rooms used less frequently.

It isn’t a great choice for walls where there is more chance of scuffing or marking. Bedrooms for instance may not benefit from flat paint as it can be harder to clean.

Bathrooms should never have flat paint either. This is because this type of coating absorbs moisture. Tiles are a better choice as they can be wiped.

Is Flat Paint Easy to Clean?

Choosing the right coatings is important if you are expecting to be able to clean them. One of the crucial things you need to know before painting your home is what type of paint to use on what surface.

Flat paint isn’t the easiest type of coating to clean. Gloss paint is easier in this regard. However, gloss paint doesn’t suit every surface.

Firstly, you should start out with high-quality flat paint. This will help you further down the line when you are trying to wipe away grubby marks left on the wall.

Secondly, don’t attempt to clean flat painted walls until at least a month after the last application.

What Is the Best Way to Clean Flat Painted Walls?

You mustn’t clean flat painted walls too vigorously. If you rub too hard you will wear down the layers of paint leaving an uneven appearance on the wall.

You will need some cleaning supplies and tools before starting:

  • Water
  • Cloth or sponge
  • White vinegar
  • Detergent
  • Magic eraser sponge

If you are lucky, all you will need are the first two items on the list. Often a damp cloth will wipe away marks on flat paint.

If you find that the scuff or mark is too stubborn for water, then you can try some other options.

First, add a little vinegar to your water and dip your cloth in it. Vinegar is effective at removing marks without damaging the paint.

Magic eraser sponges are useful for spot cleaning when vinegar isn’t enough. These are lightly abrasive so be careful when scrubbing not to damage the paint.

If nothing else is working, try some detergent diluted in water. This is the last port of call and should be applied carefully.

Touching Up the Wall After Cleaning

If you still have paint leftover from your decorating, then you may need to touch up where you have cleaned.

If the marks were particularly stubborn, then you may find you have taken some of the sheens off the wall.

Use a small touch-up brush to cover the problematic area. Now your wall should be as good as new.


When it comes to paints and coats, it would seem that Florida and California enjoy decorating more than the rest of the country.

According to Statista, Florida and California account for thousands of paint and coating establishments in the US.

Wherever you are though, you likely take pride in your home. Adding flat paint to walls can result in a lovely sheen, but it isn’t suitable for every room.

At least now though, if you do need to wash your flat painted walls, you will know how to.

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