Walls Get Dusty Too
Many people dust their furniture and knickknacks, but fail to notice that dust clings to their ceilings and walls. Most interior wall primers have sand in them. This gives a texture to the paint. Without texture in the primer, you would notice every imperfection in the wall surface. It is almost impossible to install drywall without having some minor bumps and ridges. Even the most minor of these imperfections shows when there is no texture in the primer.
Dust clings to these textured wall surfaces!
How Your Tools Can Affect Your Outcome
I’m writing this article because my neighbor called me. “Terrie! I dusted my walls and now they’re fuzzy!” I thunked my head on the wall. I knew immediately what she’d done. Now I’ll share some tips so that you don’t make the same mistake.
Jane (alias to protect the guilty!) had grabbed her used Swiffer® duster and proceeded to dust her walls. I realized that I hadn’t described HOW to dust the walls. I’d introduced the Swiffer® duster to her a couple of months before and I instinctively knew she used it on the walls.
Don’t use Swiffers® on sand-based primed walls!
Swiffers® have small, soft fibers that snag on sharp protrusions, such as the sand particles. They are great at dusting smooth surfaces and even knickknacks. If you are like Jane, vacuum up the snagged fibers by brushing the walls with the vacuum’s brush attachment.
The vacuum brush attachment is one of the best ways to rid your walls of dust. Make sure the brush is clean or it can soil the wall. Wash it with dishwashing soap, laundry detergent, or a general cleaner, such as SC Johnson’s Fantastik®.
The second best is a freshly washed broom or a new broom. A used broom can put nasty dirt onto your walls. Sometimes greasy dirt on the broom will permanently stain a wall. Wash your broom in the bathtub using one of the products suggested for the vacuum brush.
Another tool is a clean dust mop. This may leave small tufts of fibers behind, depending upon the type of material (cotton, synthetic, or other) and how old it is. Dust mop fibers usually break down with usage. Sometimes new ones leave fibers behind, too. Normally, they are better after a good washing. I prefer the vacuum or broom over any tool that may leave fibers behind.
Don’t spray your broom, vacuum brush attachment or mop with anything!
How to Dust Your Walls
This may sound strange, but it comes from the voice of experience: don’t sweep across the noticeable cobwebs first. As a housecleaner, I have cleaned many walls. My first tendencies were to sweep the cobwebs out of the corners then proceed to the middle walls. Usually, the cobwebs snagged on the rough wall texture, leaving the walls looking worse.
I changed my routine and dusted the ceiling before the walls – avoiding the cobwebs. When I finish with the minor dust on the walls, I snarf up those nasty cobwebs. No more lost time cleaning the dust mop or broom in the middle of the job! I now finish the job in almost half the time.
Contrary to some advice found on the Internet, do not dampen your dust mop before dusting your walls. Again, from past experimenting, I have noticed that damp tools have a tendency to leave streaks or smudges.
Just Follow the Basics
Dusting your walls takes very few minutes. The payoff is cleaner, healthier walls. Dust them at the beginning of every season or more often if you have a dust-prone home. Any house that has a gravel driveway or is located near a dirt or gravel road is prone to getting dusty. Other factors are the surroundings. Farmhouses get dustier because the wind blowing across the fields carries dust and pollen.
Many people, including children, suffer from dust allergies. Check out Sincerely Anna’s article on children and allergies. The link is under “Supporting Links.”
Remember to use a clean tool and do the major cobwebs last. Try dusting your ceiling and walls the next time you are cleaning your house. You’ll be amazed at how dirty they are!
Personal experience as a housekeeper