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Rainbow Restoration Blog

Removing Stains on Walls and Ceilings

Keeping your home clean means addressing stains in unusual places, including the walls and ceilings. Various things can mar these surfaces, including splattered grease, water stains, scuff marks, and more. There may not seem like a good solution for removing stains on walls and ceilings, but with the right tools and techniques, it’s easier than you think.

How to Get Grease Stains off a Painted Wall or Ceiling

Oil and grease stains are most common on kitchen walls and ceilings. Eliminating the stain requires you to clean the walls without removing the paint. Here’s how:

  • Wipe the area with a clean cloth to remove as much grease as possible.
  • Apply a grease-fighting cleaner, such as Greased Lightning, Mean Green, or Dawn dish soap mixed with hot water. Equal parts vinegar and hot water may also be effective.
  • Gently scrub the grease stain with a sponge, cloth, or soft brush moistened with your grease-fighting cleaner of choice.
  • Rinse the area with a clean, damp cloth.
  • Dry the area as best you can and allow it to air dry completely.

How to Get Marks off Wallpaper

Many types of wallpaper are made of vinyl, a washable plastic material. Still, the trick is to use the least amount of water possible to avoid damaging the wall covering. Here are some cleaning techniques for removing different kinds of marks from vinyl wallpaper:

  • Clean scuff marks with one-half cup vinegar and one quart of water. Wear rubber gloves and squeeze out as much liquid from your sponge as possible before gently scrubbing the scuff marks away.
  • Clean grease stains with water and cornstarch paste. Apply with your fingers and rub the area to lift out the grease. Wipe with a slightly damp rag and dry with a clean cloth. Dry borax also removes grease stains from wallpaper.
  • Remove crayon marks with a fine-grade steel wool pad filled with soap (but no water). Rub very gently to remove the crayon marks. If this doesn’t work, try using a paper towel dampened with dry-cleaning solvent. Dab the area lightly and blot as you go to prevent the solvent from streaking across the wallpaper.

How to Remove Water Stains from a Ceiling without Painting

It’s nearly impossible to get ceiling touch-up paint to blend and look right. Therefore, you should try this simple trick before you attempt to paint over a water-stained ceiling:

Spray the area with a solution of 10 percent bleach and 90 percent water. Let the stain dry, and then spray it again. Repeat this process five or six times, and the water stain should disappear! Remember to repair the source of the water leak to prevent the stain from reappearing.

How to Remove Stains from Ceiling Tiles

Sometimes, tiles are the easiest type of ceiling to install when you finish your basement. This keeps plumbing, wiring, and ductwork easily accessible above the tiles.

If one or more tiles become stained, you may be able to clean them with an all-purpose cleaning spray—as long as the tiles are vinyl-coated. Non-washable ceiling tiles may be spot-cleaned with special ceiling tile cleaner. If a tile is stained beyond repair, replacing it is a simple, low-cost option to consider.

Schedule Professional Spot and Stain Removal

While these home remedies may be enough to remove stains on walls and ceilings, those stubborn spots may demand professional attention. Fortunately, Rainbow Restoration® is here to help. We have high-grade cleaning products and years of experience treating even the most difficult stains. Contact us today to learn more about our professional stain removal techniques or to schedule services.


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