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The color of the walls in your home is often aesthetically pleasing. Homeowners choose paint colors that give the home a warm and welcoming feel. Some homeowners will choose to use flat paint on their walls and it is necessary to keep them clean and looking nice. How to clean walls with flat paint? You will want to dust the wall first and then gather the materials and make the cleaning solution.

Let’s learn more about keeping your flat paint walls looking nice!

Baby drawing on the walls. The walls have flat paint and will need to be cleaned.

What is Flat Paint?

Flat paint, often called matte paint, is a type of wall paint that doesn’t reflect light, hence providing a non-glossy, flat finish. It’s often used to achieve a rustic or old-fashioned appearance. It is also very common in homes.

How Often to Clean Walls?

Cleaning walls should be part of your regular home maintenance routine. However, the specific timing can depend on several factors such as the amount of dirt accumulated, whether there are children or pets in the house, and so on. On average, cleaning every 2-4 months is recommended.

Materials Needed to Clean Walls With Flat Paint

For this task, you’ll need:

  1. A bucket
  2. Mild soap/detergent
  3. Soft sponges or washcloths
  4. Warm water
  5. Dry towels

How to Clean Walls with Flat Paint

Flat paint is a great choice for areas of your home that don’t see heavy traffic. However, these painted surfaces might require a bit more attention when it comes to cleaning. Let’s look at the steps below to do this project.

Step-by-Step Instructions to Clean Walls with Flat Paint

  1. Dust the Surface: Before washing the wall, use a duster or a dry cloth to wipe away any dust or dirt.
  2. Prepare Cleaning Solution: Mix warm water with a few drops of mild soap in a bucket.
  3. Test the Solution: Before applying the solution, test it on an inconspicuous area of the wall to make sure it doesn’t damage or discolor the paint.
  4. Clean the Wall: Gently clean the wall using a soft sponge dipped into the solution. Make sure not to rub too hard.
  5. Dry the Wall: After cleaning, pat the wall gently using a dry towel to prevent water marks.
Wiping a wall clean of dust and dirt.

Maintaining Your Walls

To maintain the look and longevity of your flat-painted walls, avoid touching them frequently and always clean up any spills or stains as soon as possible. If you don’t want to pull out the materials whenever there are marks on the wall, you can also use a magic eraser.

Semi-Gloss Vs Satin Paint Vs Flat Paint Walls

When it comes to wall paint, there are a few types to choose from. Flat paint gives a sophisticated and elegant look but is less durable and harder to clean. Semi-gloss and satin paints, on the other hand, are more durable and easier to clean, but they may highlight wall imperfections.

Other Recommended Maintenance

Now that you know about maintaining flat paint walls, let’s look at a few other areas of recommended maintenance.

One of those is caulking trim before or after painting. It is best to caulk the trim after you paint so you can make sure it looks professional.

Another is cleaning skylights. Since you are cleaning the walls, this may be a good time to look at your skylights. You can do this by using soap, water, rags, and a telescoping pole.

Lastly, take a look at your ceilings. If you have a home built between the 1950s-1980s and it has a popcorn ceiling, you may want to have it checked for asbestos.

When to Call a Professional

If there’s extensive or tough staining or if the paint starts peeling during your cleaning efforts, it may be time to seek professional help. Also, if the walls seem to look dull or need a color uplift, you may want to reach out to a professional for help with re-painting or suggestions about what to do next.


Cleaning and maintaining walls with flat paint or a matte finish doesn’t have to be difficult. By following these steps and regularly undertaking these tasks, you can preserve the longevity and beauty of your painted walls. While you are maintaining your flat paint walls, this is a great time to reach out to RedFish Inspections for a home inspection in Houston, TX, and the surrounding areas.

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