How to Clean Semi-gloss Painted Walls

The slightly glossy finish of semi-gloss paint makes walls and ceilings washable. In general, the glossier the finish, the more likely you can clean the walls without damaging the paint. Semi-gloss paint works well in the kitchen, children's rooms and other high-use spaces in your home that require frequent cleaning. Put the walls on your to-do list with some regularity, perhaps monthly, to keep the project manageable and the grime from turning into a permanent design.

Semi-gloss painted walls can withstand frequent cleaning.

Step 1

Dust the entire wall with a duster to remove loose debris. Start at the top of the wall and work down.

Step 2

Fill a bucket with warm water. Fill another bucket with warm water and a squirt of liquid dishwashing soap, or mix a bleach-free all-purpose cleaner with warm water according to the labels instructions.

Step 3

Submerge a clean cloth in the cleaning solution and wring it out well.

Step 4

Scrub the wall in approximately 3-foot-square sections using the cloth and cleaning solution, working in a circular motion from the bottom up to prevent streaking. Rinse each section immediately after washing it with a clean rag and the clean water from the bucket. Dry each section promptly with another clean rag or towel.

Step 5

Repeat this process of washing, rinsing and drying the wall in small sections until the entire wall is clean. Move on to the next wall in the same fashion.


  • Although durable semi-gloss paint can withstand washing, test the cleaning solution on an inconspicuous area of the wall first to check for any damage.

About the Author

Kimbry Parker has been writing since 1998 and has published content on various websites. Parker has experience writing on a variety of topics such as health, parenting, home improvement and decorating. She is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Arts in organizational communication.