How to Clean Smoked Walls From Gas Heat
Soot and smoke produced from a gas heater can cover the walls with an oily residue that is difficult to remove. This residue will give off an unpleasant odor and -- if not removed in a timely manner -- will stain the walls permanently. Fortunately, you do not have to live with smoke-stained walls. With a few common and inexpensive household items, you can successfully remove the smoke and soot, restoring the look of the walls.
Remove items from the walls. Keep these items -- such as framed pictures and wall decorations -- in a safe location during the cleaning process.
Pour 3 gallons of warm water into a 5-gallon bucket. Add 1 cup non-sudsing ammonia, and 1/4 cup liquid dish soap -- that does not contain bleach -- to the water. Mix the contents with a long-handled spoon. Fill a second bucket with cool water.
Saturate a sponge in the mixture. Wring out the sponge to remove excess liquid. Begin at the bottom of the walls, and scrub in a circular motion while working upward. Starting at the bottom will help eliminate drip stains.
Rinse the sponge in the bucket of clean water when it becomes soiled. Submerge it back into the cleaning mixture, wring out the excess liquid, and continue scrubbing approximately a 3-foot by 3-foot area of the wall.
Fill another bucket with clean water. Dampen a cloth in the water, and rinse the cleaning mixture from the 3-foot by 3-foot area of the wall.
Use a clean towel to dry the water from the wall. Continue cleaning in 3-foot sections until you have cleaned all the walls.
- Excess smoke and soot can be a sign of an underlying problem with the gas heater. Contact your gas company or manufacturer of the heater for more information.
- Do not mix ammonia with bleach or products containing bleach. The resulting fumes are toxic.
- Do not let the walls become overly saturated with moisture. Excess moisture on walls can led to water damage, water stains, and mold growth.
Amanda Flanigan began writing professionally in 2007. Flanigan has written for various publications, including WV Living and American Craft Council, and has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Flanigan completed two writing courses at Pierpont Community and Technical College.