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Maintaining Walls and Ceilings

You can wipe away fingerprints, crayon, pen marks, dirt, and dust from walls, trim, and doors with spray cleaner and a damp cloth.

If your house is relatively new, make a bucket of soapy water and wipe the walls and ceiling with a damp sponge. If your house is older, you need something that cuts through the accumulated crud: a synthetic TSP solution.

Short for trisodium phosphate, TSP removes greasy dirt like nothing else. Mix up a bucketful, wipe down the walls and ceiling, then rinse thoroughly with clean water. TSP etches paint. It will eventually dull a glossy finish. A TSP cleaning should be performed only when nothing else works.

If you are planning to paint your wall after cleaning with TSP, a leftover film of TSP prevents proper paint adhesion.

You may not realize it, but everything in your kitchen is covered with a thin coating of grease and gummy dust. And your bathroom walls have their own coating of gunk, including hairspray, cleaning products, and stuck-on dust.