While learning how to clean baseboards might sound like a relativity simple task at first glance, the reality is there are many different factors that need to be taken into consideration.
There is no one absolute way you should technically go about doing this; people tend to use different techniques depending on how they're cleaning them and how dirty the baseboards actually are.
Regardless of how you're going to clean them though, there is one thing that remains a constant throughout all of these how-to guides, prevention is the best remedy for all household chores.
Either way, let's get to it with the best way to clean your baseboards to perfection to keep your house looking it's very best.
What Is the Best Way to Clean Baseboards?
In general, it's always been advised that if the baseboards have been installed for less than a year, use a steam cleaner to first remove any dust or dirt.
This way, you won't have to scrub as hard since the majority of the grime will have been removed, making it less likely that you'll damage the baseboard or paint.
Different types of cleaning methods that can be used:
- A vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment
- Carpet sweeper/floor polisher (for prepping floors)
- A wet cloth and a bucket of water with a small amount of dish soap
- A wet mop and bucket with water and vinegar
If they've been installed for more than a year or more, then using traditional cleaning methods that involve dry brushing with soapy water is generally recommended.
6 Simple Steps to Cleaning Baseboards and Crown Molding
Are you sick of how dirty your baseboards are? Do they seem to be a forgotten byproduct of your home and too much of a hassle to clean?
Well, if you're willing to load up a spray bottle with some liquid soap and vinegar, you're only a few hours away from having your baseboards sparkling like they've been freshly painted.
Whether it's from shoes, dust bunnies, or pets, baseboards get dirty really quickly. In this tutorial, I will show how to clean baseboards using a few household items and give you tips on how to keep them clean.
When it comes to cleaning baseboards and or crown molding, cleaning expert Melissa Maker offers these baseboard cleaning hacks in just 5 simple steps.
Step-By-Step Process to Cleaning Baseboards
The first step to cleaning baseboard molding is to make sure there is no dirt or dust hiding behind them. Ideally, before any deep cleaning, you'll want to apply a vacuum attachment to your vacuum and remove loose dirt from your boards and floors.
Next, mix mild liquid soap and vinegar or a TSP cleaning solution in a bucket of warm water. Use a sponge mop on the floor, while using a sponge on the walls and ceiling to remove dirt from the sides of the baseboard and crown molding.
Then, wipe the back of the baseboards and molding with a dry towel to remove any excess moisture and soap mixture. You can also use a Swiffer or similar type mop instead of a sponge mop for this step, but when using one you need to be careful not to leave streaks on paint surfaces.
Vacuum the baseboards and crown molding to remove any remaining debris. This is especially necessary if you have pets or kids that leave crumbs on the floor, which can then get stuck to the sides of your baseboards and crown molding.
Use a dust mop to wipe down the top of your baseboards and crown molding. This will remove any future dust that accumulates and will keep your baseboards looking great.
Use a clean microfiber cloth and simply wipe the baseboards clean. Microfiber is an excellent all-around material for how to clean baseboards because it is non-abrasive, yet powerful enough to clean dirt and dust. Using the cloth will prevent streaks on how to clean baseboards and crown molding.
Cleaning your baseboards doesn't have to be a hassle - with these 5 simple steps and a few household tools like a broom, cotton swabs, wood cleaner, and even an old toothbrush for those hard-to-reach corners, it will be one of the easiest tasks you've done in your life.
How Do You Clean Painted Baseboards and Walls
To begin, it's important to mention that if your home or office has been built in recent years chances are they have already been painted as part of the finishing process.
If this is the case, you will need to use a dry paintbrush and some soapy water to clean them instead of harsh cleaning products.
Step-By-Step Process to Cleaning Painted Baseboards and Walls
Start by removing everything from the floor in the room, including furniture and accessories. Make sure you have a clear path around your baseboards where no obstacle will get in your way while you clean. If you don't have enough room to move around easily, it's best to wait until another time.
Sweep the floor to remove anything that shouldn't be there, especially in corners or behind furniture. You should also go over baseboards with a vacuum cleaner, including the joints where they meet the wall.
Next up is window cleaning. This step isn't mandatory, but it will definitely help you clean the room. It also gives you a chance to clean windows in the room and let light in, making it easier to spot nooks and crannies that need extra care when cleaning baseboards.
Pour some dishwashing liquid into a bucket of warm water, and use this mixture with your nylon pad brush to start scrubbing away dirt. If there are any scuff marks on the baseboards or walls, use a magic eraser or microfiber cloth to scrub them away. You can also use a dry dusting cloth at this point if you would rather save time.
Once the painted baseboards are clean of dirt and grime, wipe the trim down with some vinegar. This will also give you a chance to clean windowsills while you're at it. Vinegar is a natural disinfectant and will help your home remain free of germs and bacteria, which can accumulate over time if you don't give your baseboards a regular cleaning.
Go back with some warm water and dish soap to wash away the vinegar residue from the painted baseboards. You should also use your nylon pad to remove any stubborn stains or marks, then go over the baseboards with a dry cloth to pick up any remaining dust.
Finally, use your steam cleaner to give painted baseboards a good final cleaning. Make sure you use the correct attachment for the job unless you want to ruin your machine in short order!
The steam will kill germs and bacteria while also loosening stubborn dirt that may have otherwise remained stuck with vinegar alone.
How Often Should You Clean Baseboards
In most homes, cleaning the baseboards is a task that often gets overlooked until you eventually get fed up with how dirty they look and how much dirt accumulates on them. For year-round clean baseboards, the easy way to clean baseboards is to give them a birthday when you also clean walls.
The simple solution to this homeowners conundrum is to make sure you clean your home's baseboards regularly. Routinely cleaning your baseboards with a magic eraser on a quarterly basis would be the ideal remedy for sparkling baseboards.
With a few tips on how to clean baseboard molding, you can make sure they always look new and will never leave an unsightly mess.
A Matter Of Frequency: Most homeowners opt for a once or twice monthly schedule. If your schedule varies, remember that it is how often you clean the baseboards which is important - not how often you vacuum your entire house.
Best Cleaning Solution for Baseboards
If you're looking for the best cleaning solution for both baseboards and crown molding, your best bet is a solution of TSP and water. All you need to do is mix two tablespoons of TSP into one gallon of warm water and add a magic eraser or microfiber cloth to the mix.
Make sure that the mixture is not too strong or it might cause damage to your walls.
To apply, simply spray the solution on the surface of your baseboards or crown molding, wait for five to seven minutes, and wipe the surface off with a sponge. To shine up the baseboards, use a clean microfiber cloth dipped in vinegar for a professional touch.
Solution-Free Cleaning Method
Another smart option to clean baseboards, molding, and tiles is to use a steamer cleaner. All you have to do is fill up the machine with water and add some cleaner into the water tank.
Plugin the steamer cleaner and go over any grime on your baseboards, tiles, or molding with it. This is an effective way to get rid of dirt, mold, or mildew without worrying about damage to your walls or baseboard surfaces like paint or wallpaper.
However, if you still want to use a chemical cleaner, try to avoid using harsh chemicals like ammonia or bleach on baseboards. These cleaners are not only bad for the environment but can also cause permanent damage to your walls if not used properly.
All-Organic Cleaning Solution
Another option is an all-purpose fruit and vegetable wash that will clean tough stains but keep your baseboard surfaces safe from harm.
If your wall is made of another material, like brick or stone, it's best to stick with liquid cleaners that are designed for walls. Stay away from acidic cleaners as they might cause irreversible damage to the surface. And always check how to use each cleaner beforehand - some need time to soak into grime while others work faster.
As always, make sure to test the cleaner on a small area of your baseboard, especially if it's part of the finished wall surface.
The Bottom Line
I hope you found everything you were looking for from our article on the best way to clean baseboards and crown molding.
Whether you're attempting to spruce up aging dirty baseboards with nasty stains or painted crown molding, these cleaning tips will help with getting the job done.
Remember, if your baseboards are looking a little drab and dingy, the best way to make them sparkle is by keeping a regular cleaning routine and keep a good all purpose cleaner on hand.