How to Clean Marks Off Your Walls

Time: 10 minutes

Months of tracking in salt and snow can do some damage to your entryways. If you notice that your door frames and walls have been marked up, now's the time to take care of it. Here's how to get started cleaning scuff marks from your walls.

What's in it for you?

  • More attractive entryway
  • Improved property value

How to Clean Marks Off Your Walls:

  1. Start with soap and water. Because it’s so gentle, a mixture of dish soap and warm water will clean while preserving the finish of your painted walls. Use a soft sponge or cloth to buff away dirt and scuff marks. Dark marks caused by hands are usually a combination of oil and dirt, and dish soap is usually sufficient to cut through them.
  2. Add baking soda for stubborn spots. If you're facing stubborn marks that won't come off with a soft cloth and soap, try adding a paste made of baking soda and water to the area and scrubbing gently in small, circular motions. This light abrasive usually won't hurt anything, though it can dull the finish on high-gloss painted woodwork. Test it in an inconspicuous area to be sure.
  3. Try a tennis ball on glossy woodwork. Buffing out scuff marks with a tennis ball will help remove surface marks caused by rubbery shoe soles while preserving the finish.
  4. Use a Magic Eraser. These sponges have a bit of all-purpose cleaner in them. Save this approach for spots that aren't responding to the previous steps, as these tough cleansers can remove paint if you rub too hard. Work gently and test in a small area first.

Pro Tip: Not all marks can be removed. If the area is scratched or feels rough, you'll need to touch up the paint. Start by rubbing away dirt and smoothing out scratches with fine-grit sandpaper. Wipe the area clean and repaint.

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