Finished painting? Follow our expert tips and tricks to make the cleaning-up process a breeze.
How to clean up after painting.

How to clean up after painting

Clean up easily and quickly with these expert tips.

Step 1: Spot check

First, check that you haven’t got paint on your socks or the soles of your shoes – this will help you to avoid spreading it around your home.

Step 2: Clean your tools

Give all your painting tools a thorough clean so that they can be used next time. This includes anything you used in the decorating process, such as edgers, scrapers and paint trays.

Use warm, soapy water for water-based paint, and a solvent-based cleaner for solvent-based paint. Be sure to wipe them dry to prevent rust.

Step 3: Clean your brushes

Likewise, you’ll want to clean your brushes and rollers before any paint on them dries. If you've used water-based paint, wash brushes and rollers in cold, running water, then in warm water with a little detergent and again in cold, running water.

For solvent-based paint, clean your brushes with a solvent-based cleaner and then wash them in warm water with a little detergent.

Step 4: Store your brushes

Wrap your brushes in a piece of absorbent fabric, such as a kitchen towel, and secure with masking tape. This will ensure your brushes return to their original shape while they’re drying. Store them flat so the bristles don’t bend.

Step 5: Wipe your paint tin

Wipe the outside edge and interior rim of your paint tin before you press the lid firmly back on. This prevents spreading any paint drips and makes it easier to re-open the tin in future.

Step 6: Clean paint splashes

Got paint splashes on fittings or glass? These are easily removed. Simply wait until the paint dries, and then wipe the surface with a damp cloth or scrape gently with a blunt knife.

Step 7: Shake your sheets

Finally, fold the edges of your drip cloths and sheets towards the middle so you don’t smear any spills or drips on surrounding surfaces. Take them outside and shake them before storing.

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