Tips & Tricks for Cleaning Interior Paint Work

Maintaining internal paintwork can assist in keeping your paint looking fresh for longer and reduce the build-up of contaminants over time. The sheen level of your paint determines the best method/s for cleaning.

Flat and Low Sheen Paint

Flat and low sheen paint are commonly used on walls and ceilings. The following steps should be used to keep these sheen levels of paint looking like new:

  1. Use warm water with a small amount of mild detergent to wash the walls along with a soft cloth (that will not discolour the walls) or a soft bristle brush (for when the stain is particularly stubborn). Do not use rough abrasives, stiff scrubbing brushes, or harsh caustic preparations. These can polish the surface, resulting in obvious highlights on the wall, which can only be rectified by repainting.
  2. Clean off the stain in a gentle, circular motion. Ensure that all residues are removed with a clean, soft cloth and fresh, clean water.
  3. Once you have thoroughly cleaned the affected area, wash down the rest of the wall/ceiling to ensure the clean patch is not visibly cleaner.

Most marks will come off using this method, however some more stubborn contaminants such as greasy marks or black finger prints around light switches may remain. In this instance, a stronger cleaning agent with a solvent for dissolving grease (such as a gentle spray and wipe) may be required. Most acrylic paints are sensitive to solvents and can soften when these are applied. However, with Rockcote EcoStyle Low Sheen paint, you can confidently use a gentle spray and wipe to remove these greasy marks.

Gloss and Satin Paint

Satin and gloss paints are commonly used in the wet areas of the home, such as the bathroom, kitchen and laundry. These areas are prone to a build-up of films from contaminants such as cooking fats, soap, dust, etc. In relatively short periods, this film can dull the most successful paintwork. Careful and periodic cleaning can greatly extend the life of your paint and keep it looking like new. For satin and gloss paint, follow the below steps for cleaning:

  1. Use warm water with a little bit of detergent added to wash the walls along with a soft cloth (that will not discolour the walls) or a soft bristle brush. On these sheen levels of paint you can use a little more ‘elbow grease’ than you might use safely on flat or low sheen paint. Do not use abrasives or caustic-based cleaning agents as these can scratch or eat into the paint surface.
  2. Clean off any stains and then wash down the whole wall.
  3. Ensure that the whole wall and any residue is washed off with clean water and allow to dry.

When selecting a gloss level of paint, consider the suitability of the paint for the area being painted, including how easy it will be to clean.