Is It Necessary to Wash Walls Before Painting?

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Some people who are planning to paint their home’s interior wonder if it is better to wash walls before painting, or if they can start working right away. Primarily, this all depends on the type of paint and the surface that you will have to paint on. So, for further information on this topic, read along and gain practical tips and techniques that will help you obtain outstanding results.


Determine if you need to wash the walls

If you are using gloss or semi-gloss paints, you will first have to keep the walls washed and cleaned throughly before getting started. This applies when you are repainting a wall with this type of paint. Fortunately, cleaning up the area is much easier, as compared to flat paint, so that should take the stress out in this task.

You may begin by testing a small section of the surface to be painted on, and check carefully if there are no damages that will be done to the surface. Moreover, by checking the wall, you can spare yourself from stress in case there is no need to wash the area.

When it comes to cleaning walls with flat paint, you may realize that this task can be quite daunting to do. What’s more, you cannot expect to completely get rid of smoke, stains and marks on the wall. Flat paint is also less likely to resist any damages caused by chemicals found in agents used in cleaning the area. Hence, you may notice some damages or slight discoloration to the wall due to the cleaning solution.

As for latex paints, you will like the fact that these can effectively cover any precious coats on the surface. This type of paint is also fade-resistant and easy to clean. Just be sure to buy high quality latex paint since cheaper ones tend to rub off easily after washing. Ideally, you need to look for paint that comes with a higher rating when it comes to clean ability. While the cost may be more expensive, you will like the fact that this can spare you from any hassles in terms of labor and overall quality of the paint.

The following are some tips you may need to know in cleaning walls before applying fresh paint:

1. Choose the best cleaner to use.

Begin by selecting the best type of cleaning agent that you can apply on the walls for cleaning. Great options include anything that can help clean the surface well such as clear ammonia, which you may purchase at retail shops and janitorial supply stores. However, while this product may be cheap, you may notice that it has quite a strong odor. So, keep the area where you are working well-ventilated to let the odor out while keeping fresh air in.

2. Combine water with ammonia.

Next thing you need to do is to mix ammonia with water. Measure about 2 cups of ammonia and stir this in with a gallon of water. You may use more water, as long as you add 2 parts ammonia with every gallon. If you want to minimize the strong odor of ammonia, you may want to use cool water with it.

3. Consider using trisodium phosphate for cleaning walls.

When you are looking to repaint walls, you may want to try using trisodium phosphate for better results. This agent is effective in giving the surface some etched quality, so it will be easier and faster for the paint to adhere to it. If you notice some streaks it leaves on your wall, this should not bother you since the area will be painted on afterwards.

4. Spot cleaning the wall may work, too.

In some cases, there is no need to wash the walls completely except on areas that easily become soiled such as the bathroom and kitchen. Other than these places, spot cleaning may work, particularly in your room with glossy finish on the wall.

However, if you notice that the areas only contain minor dirt and debris, then you can simply wipe them off using a piece of cloth dabbed with some all-purpose cleaner. You can do this as a part of your weekly cleaning to prevent much dirt from accumulating. If spot cleaning fails to provide good results, then you may start washing the walls completely.

Getting Started

Regardless of the place that needs to be painted on, you will have to prepare the area by moving away some pieces of furniture to prevent these from being covered with paint. Furthermore, you have to keep furniture out of the way, so it will be easier for you to work on areas that require cleaning.

Aside from furniture, you should remove the drapes and curtains. Have these washed, as well, so these will look great once your walls are painted with fresh paint. The same holds true with window blinds, which must be taken down before you begin painting.

It is also best that you remove any framed paintings or photos on the wall. As long as these are blocking your way when you apply paint, then these should be taken down. Otherwise, you may either accidentally apply some paint or spatters on the frame or photo, or the area behind the framed items may remain unpainted.

Painting walls is not an easy task since there are plenty of preparations that must be done ahead of time. Nevertheless, these techniques will ensure you of top quality results that rival a professional’s work. So, apply these tips on your next painting job, and discover the benefits and positive outcomes that these techniques can provide you.