How to Paint Over Smoke Damage

If you are considering painting your home yourself, you should consider the fact that it may not be as easy as simply applying your favorite colors of paint. This is especially true if you have any soot, smoke, or nicotine stains on your walls.

These stains are not uncommon. They may occur due to smoking, small kitchen fires, burning candles, or using a wood-burning fireplace.

However, no matter what causes the stains, they are difficult to paint over. Also, there aren’t any paints that will easily cover all of these stains. So, the best solution is likely to be to remove the stains before painting. We are going to help you with this by explaining how to remove small smoke or nicotine stains. If you have had a larger fire, it is important to hire a professional fire remediation company.

Here is how to remove small smoke stains.

Use the Right Sponge

You will need to use a chemical sponge, or as they are sometimes called a dry cleaning sponge. This type of sponge works well because it is good at removing the stains or soot without spreading the stain around and making it worse.

You don’t have to worry that these sponges contain chemicals. They actually don’t contain any chemicals and consist of natural vulcanized rubber.

Protect Yourself and Your Home

Removing soot and smoke stains can be a messy job. The soot can get everywhere, possibly even in your eyes. So, be sure to wear gloves, old clothes, and eye protection. Also, cover your floors and furniture with plastic sheeting.

Wipe With a Dry Sponge

Wipe the ceiling first. Then, wipe the walls by starting at the top and working your way down. Wipe in straight lines and overlap your work. Don’t scrub. Once your sponge becomes too dirty, remove the top layer and continue to clean. Be sure not to wet or rinse the sponge, or it won’t work correctly. Also, you may find that you need more than one sponge to complete your work.

Try Wet Cleaning

Dry cleaning may have removed all of the stains. But, if you still have some stains on your wall, you can try wet cleaning. This will require the right cleaner. The best cleaner for this job is either TSP (Trisodium Phosphate) or TSP-PF, which is basically TSP without the phosphate.

Use a regular sponge with this cleaner. Clean the walls top to bottom in the same way you did when dry cleaning. Again, wear old clothes and eye protection, and don’t scrub. After you use the cleaner, wipe the walls again with warm water alone. Then, let the walls dry.

Use Primer

By now, you’ve probably removed a majority of the staining. However, you could easily still have a bit of staining. If you choose to paint now, you might find the stains show through the paint. The best way to avoid this is to apply a primer that is meant to cover up stains before painting. Be sure to follow any safety instructions when applying the primer. This generally includes good ventilation and possibly wearing a respirator.

Apply Paint

Once your primer is thoroughly dry, you can prepare your walls and paint. You should follow the instructions for preparing to paint, including any safety precautions, and then apply two coats of indoor paint.

Contact Us

For more information on smoke damage or for help in dealing with it, call the restoration professionals at RestorePro at 1-800-847-0114 or connect with us on Facebook.