How to get rid of soot from wall

How to get rid of soot stain from wall

By Jane K - 18 of Aug, 2021

Removing soot from the wall can be a tricky task, mainly because it leaves behind a sticky residue. Removing soot the wrong way may leave you with a bigger mess than when you started.


Black marks, stains or soot deposits on walls or a ceiling are common issues. But what to do, if you want to get rid of them without specialized products like a magic eraser or cleaning detergents?


Sooty walls are the aftermath of a fireplace, candles, cigarettes, or a small fire in the kitchen. This black residue is the result of the incomplete combustion of carbon-based materials. Blowing out candles instead of snuffing them out, dirty venting systems, and accidental grease fires are common causes of soot residue.


Learn how to clean soot off walls correctly in a few simple steps

Protecting Yourself Not Only Your Property — A Necessary Thing

Opening your windows is a must. Soot can harm your lungs especially if you inhale too much. This will provide fresh air and allow soot particles to escape outside thus reducing the amount of soot in your home.

Turning on fans and opening vents is important when cleaning soot. This will also help in providing a constant supply of fresh air and allowing fresh air to circulate throughout the room.

Wearing personal protective gear will protect you from the dangers of soot particles. Wear a full array of personal protective equipment such as mask or respirator, safety glasses, rubber gloves, long-sleeved shirt, and pants when cleaning soot off walls.

Emptying the room will help you move freely and clean. Since soot will just float around your room and settle on the carpet, furniture, curtains, personal items, and anything that’s inside the room. 

Covering your floor once everything has been removed is necessary when removing soot from walls. Use drop cloth/sheet, newspaper, or canvas to protect the floor and keep surfaces from soot particles, dirt, dust, and spills.

For big items that are hard to move like furniture, you can cover it with a drop cloth/sheet as well.

Getting Rid of Soot

Steps to clean:

1. Use a dry cleaning sponge (a.k.a. chemical sponge). Dry cleaning sponges don’t contain chemicals but are made from vulcanized rubber. They are designed for residue absorption and are perfect for cleaning soot. 
Since soot is easy to smear, using a regular sponge may just push the soot farther into the wall which can lead to a permanent stain.  

2 Begin at the top left edge of the soot stain then pressing the sponge firmly against the wall. Wipe the wall downward in a vertical line and with overlapping strokes. Repeat until you get to the bottom edge of the stain and have wiped the whole surface.
Another tip: Don’t scrub, just wipe. Scrubbing can move the soot particles around and cause the stain to spread

3. Use the fresh section of the sponge as necessarhttps://gem-3910432.nety. If the sponge gets a lot of soot and becomes clogged, just use the clean side by flipping it over.
Another tip: Don’t attempt to clean the sponge with water, or it won’t be usable for cleaning soot.

4. When all sections of the sponge are clogged with soot, cut off the affected layers. If the sponge is clean again, just continue to use it in removing soot.

5. Repeat wiping the wall until it is clean. Once the sponge has absorbed and removed all the soot, you can get rid of any stain left with a regular sponge and a degreasing solution or cleaner.

Cleaning the Residue Stains on the Walls

After removing all soot from the wall, treat the remaining stain with a degreaser. Mix the cleaning solution in a bucket

Sugar soap solution: mix 3 tbsps of sugar soap with a half-gallon or 1.9L of water

TSP (trisodium phosphate) solution: mix a half cup or 4oz of TSP with a half-gallon of water. This may not be available in all areas since it’s a harsh chemical. You can check with a local home improvement store for other alternative cleaning solutions.

Degreasing dish soap solution: mix 2 tbsps of liquid detergent with a half-gallon of water.

Begin to clean the wall with a degreaser by soaking the sponge in the solution and wring out the excess. Use a damp sponge to remove soot residue 

Once you finish cleaning the wall with a degreaser, rinse the area with water. Then get a damp sponge to wipe away the excess cleaner and soot.

Dry the wall and its surfaces by using a towel or a rag. Then allow the wall to air dry for a couple of hours.

Once you finish cleaning the wall, you can now remove the protective cover of the floor. Do it carefully to avoid the spreading of soot everywhere.

Use a long nozzle attachment to vacuum thoroughly. Vacuum carpets, furniture, floors, baseboards that were left in the room when you were cleaning your wall.

When everything is clean, return what has been removed to its original places.

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