painting wood paneling

The idea of preserving our planet has become popular in recent years, although one could argue that it has always been a prerogative and that the disconnect was only recent. Regardless, people are demanding environmentally-friendly alternatives to products that harm our precious planet. Nowhere is this more important than in cleaning, as many cleaning products contain chemicals that are harsh on both the environment and those handling them. Lets discuss cleaning wainscoting vs. painting wood paneling.

While it may have outgrown its original use, it’s undeniable that wainscoting still has aesthetic value in the modern home. Whether your wainscoting denotes a sense of class and style, or simply highlights other wall-based features, it will always look better clean. Instead of buying typical spray cleaners, we believe it’s important to know what household products can achieve a similar job at less of a cost to the environment.

Here is a look at how you can clean the wainscoting in your home without relying on harmful chemicals.

Painting Wood Paneling vs Exposed Wood

There are two common faces to wainscoting: painted and exposed wood. Painted wainscoting will be much easier to clean, and allows for the use of liquid as the paint will protect the wood. However, if you have exposed wood-raised panel wainscoting, for example, you may wish to skip the liquid part of this cleaning process. In those instances where the exposed wood has been treated with varnish or oil, you should feel free to use the below-mentioned cleaning solution.

Common Causes of Dirty Wainscoting

Whether it’s beadboard or raised panel wainscoting, the proximity of it in relation to the floor makes it prone to both dust and dirt sullying its perfection. Depending on where the wainscoting is in the house, it may be prone to different kinds of dirt.

Kitchen Wainscoting

Wainscoting in your kitchen can amplify the sophistication of that space, although it also exposes your wainscoting to getting food on it. Whether it’s your baby throwing their food around, a food processor gone wild, or anyone in the family is a messy cook, ensuring that food comes off your wainscoting straight away is a must.

If you get food on your wainscoting you should wipe it off immediately to stop it from drying and caking into the wood and or paint.

Dining and Living Room Wainscoting

Living and dining room wainscoting is also prone to getting food on it, but perhaps not as much as in the kitchen. A more common concern for dining and living room wainscoting is dust buildup from neglect and in some cases dirty clothes or shoes being left against them.

Regular inspection of your wainscoting can help you keep on top of the dust, and if you notice any mud or dirt on your wainscoting you will want to wipe it off immediately.

Hallway Wainscoting

While wainscoting can give life to your hallways, it also tends to serve its traditional purpose of protecting the walls from scuffs. Hallways, especially near the entrance of the house, are prone to scuffs from shoes and furniture.

Scuffs can be harder to get out than dirt or food, following the below-mentioned cleaning method can help you remove them without needing to repaint or replace the wainscoting.

Painting Wood Paneling vs. Eco Friendly Cleaning

The Fight for Cleaning Wood Paneling

Whether it’s food, dirt, dust, or scuffs, the following cleaning method will help you bring your raised panel wainscoting (or any other kind) back to its original beauty. By utilizing white vinegar rather than harsh chemicals you can save money as well as save the environment from the effects of harsh synthetic cleaning agents.

Regardless of whether you’re cleaning dust, dirt, food, or scuffs off your wainscoting, start by wiping the surface down with a soft brush or duster to remove any loose debris. Follow this with a vacuum utilizing the brush attachment to do another sweep removing any leftover debris.

Depending on whether the wainscoting is sealed or unsealed will dictate the best next step for cleaning it.

For unsealed, dampen a microfiber cloth and wipe the dirty area, applying pressure to remove stubborn dirt marks. Follow up with a dry cloth to remove any moisture.

For sealed, mix two parts vinegar with one part water in a jar, adding a drop of your favorite essential oil if you’d like a nice fragrance. Dip your microfiber cloth in the mixture and wring out any excess liquid, wipe the wainscoting down one section at a time, following with a dry cloth to remove any leftover moisture.

The Fight for Painting Wood Paneling

If you love the new look of a fresh new coat of paint, consider non toxic paint options to paint your wainscoting. Our company offers painted and non painted or exposed wood paneling for your home.

Painting Wood Paneling that’s Damaged or Soiled Wainscoting

In some instances, the wainscoting cannot be cleaned or repaired easily and may need replacing. If you need to replace your wainscoting, check out our website or get in touch with us today to see how we can help.