Painted walls are a constant in many of our homes. Whether your wall is a gentle neutral or provides a bright and powerful pop of color, they provide a How to Clean Flat Painted Wallsstatement piece of decor in our offices, apartments, or homes that catches the eye and excites the people who enter. However, our walls can actually get quite dirty quite quickly. If you’re not keeping up with clean walls as part of your regular maintenance cleaning routines, you may be surprised when you take a closer look at your wall and realize just how much dirt, debris, and scuffs are hiding on top of it. Knowing how to clean flat painted walls should be a key part of any homeowner’s cleaning routine.

Cleaning your walls can transform the experience of your entire home. By creating a sparkling interior, you create a clean, tidy, and appealing space that makes people feel more at home in your home. However, not everyone knows how to properly clean flat painted walls. It’s not as simple as just slapping some soap on a rag and scrubbing down your wall. You have to be sure not to wear down your paint layer- vigorous over cleaning can scrape off sheen and cause your paint layer to patch.

We’re Here to Help You!

Our team has researched the best paint cleaning solutions to help you find the perfect way to clean your flat painted walls, and this expert guide will walk you through the best tips and tricks to keep your flat painted walls in top shape.

How Often Should I Clean My Flat Painted Walls?

Cleaning your walls on a regular basis is the best way to keep your walls in good condition and protect the overall finish of your paint. Flat paint refers to the matte texture and consistency of the paint that’s applied to your walls. Your flat painted walls will not reflect light and will help to hide imperfections in ceilings and accent walls, making it a great choice for many apartments or places with used and abused walls or partitions.

Your flat painted walls should be properly and thoroughly cleaned at least once a year. Many people turn to flat painted wall cleaning routines during their spring cleaning as a way to re-energize your home and wall space. Some tools you will need to get your flat paint wall clean and shiny are a sponge or microfiber, white vinegar, eraser sponge, foam cleansers, dish detergent, and touch up paint.

Cleaning Your Flat Paint Wall

The best way to begin cleaning your flat painted walls is to tackle stains or scuffs as soon as you notice them. The longer you let stains or dirt set into your paint, the harder it will be to remove them. Your first line of defense should be a clean, damp sponge or cloth that’s soaked with warm water.

However, if water alone isn’t enough, you can try adding some white vinegar to the sponge. Vinegar is a blind cleaner that works to remove any dirt or scuffs from the surface of the wall right away without stripping or damaging the protective exterior of the paint. Use your vinegar sponge and apply gentle pressure in the direction of the paint grain to remove or lessen any stains from the surface of your wall.

If you find yourself truly struggling with removing these stains, you can try an eraser sponge or foam cleanser. Either of these commercially formulated products are available on the market and designed to create the perfect stain-busting solution to wall stains or other hard to remove dirt and debris.

When all else fails, you can take a bucket with diluted dish washing detergent and apply the solution directly to the stain using a rag. Rub thoroughly until clean, paying careful attention to the direction you scrub so as not to thin out the paint. Go back over the areas once dry with touch up paint to refresh the wall finish for a sparkling clean look!

How to Spot Clean A Wall

If you’re struggling with targeted areas of dirt or scratching on your flat paint wall, you’re not alone. Many homeowners struggle with specific trouble spots, whether it’s footprints from your pets you just can’t shake or the scratch from a chair back that you’ve never been able to fix. Spot cleaning a wall is the perfect way to target immediate smaller imperfections in the surface of your wall.

One of the best ways to spot clean and treat your wall is to use a magic eraser to help scrub off imperfections with concentrated cleaning solution. A magic eraser is the perfect way to spot treat your wall because it doesn’t over soak or potentially warp your paint, but applies the perfect amount of cleaning solution that’s targeted to directly remove your stain without overdoing it. Apply as needed to any immediate imperfections and watch as the magic eraser works its magic!

The Best Chemical Wall Cleaning Solutions

Earlier, we talked about white vinegar as the perfect natural solution and all-purpose cleaner that removes dirt and grime without stripping away the exterior sheen of your paint. If you’re looking for something a little stronger to help guide your wall cleaning programs, there are some very good chemical foaming cleansers on the market such as ZEP Foaming Wall Cleaner to help you tackle dirt, scuffs, or stains. Foaming cleansers are ideal for removing wall stains because they provide gentle and targeted cleaning that doesn’t damage your wall but uses the power of cleaning chemicals to quickly dissolve and remove scuffs, stains, and other marks without issues.

Protect Their Sheen, Keep Flat Paint Clean


Cleaning your flat paint walls is an important component of your regular house cleaning routine. Clean walls add that extra sparkle to your home and help you and your guests feel comfortable and at-home with top-notch cleaned walls that positively shine. Follow these tried and true wall cleaning routines in order to keep your walls spotless and in good condition for years to come.


  1. Wow! This is certainly a great article and has been very thorough and concise with all the instructions. I did not know there was so much that went into cleaning these types of walls, but you have made it very easy to understand in this article and I appreciate that. Thank you so much for sharing this!

    Misael H
  2. This is ideal timing for us, as we are about to repaint our home and to be honest when I have painted in the past, I`m not sure I have cleaned the walls as well as I might have done, which presumably impacted on the final quality of the walls painted.  I particularly like the idea of using white vinegar.  Do you have any suggestions for cleaning painted wall surfaces that have a number of surfaces underneath? I.e. to prepare for re-painting but this time to a higher standard?

    1. Your walls need to be cleaned well before re painting. You can do that by using white vinegar as mentioned in the article. Make sure to wipe down the baseboards and trim as well, as they usually collect a lot of dust. Your wall surface should be flat before starting to re paint. If you have any bumps on your wall, smooth them with sand paper. For flaking or cracked surfaces use a paint scraper to smooth out. 

      Wishing you good luck in re painting your house!

  3. Hello there, Lisa! Wow this is a really professional looking website I must say. I really like the color tone and everything. I definitely agree that with any house, keeping the walls clean is a must since it really makes up that appearance like you were mentioning. My first instinct would be to scrub down the dirty wall but I often forget that the paint may wear out. Magic erasers have only been a recent thing I discovered and did not realize they were good for cleaning walls. I am going to have to purchase some more of them. Thanks for this informative post!


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