How to Clean a Gloss Interior Paint Trim

Painted trim in your house accumulates a film of dust, like any other interior surface, even if it's in a rarely-used room. If you have a busy home, trim can get quite grimy, especially around door handles, on painted cabinets and baseboards. Gloss paint is much easier to clean than flat or eggshell paint; the higher the gloss, typically the more durable and washable the painted surface. Using mild cleansers, even latex (water-based) gloss paint can be cleaned effectively.

Laundry basket
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Step 1

Fill a bucket with soapy water, using mild dish-washing detergent or a general purpose cleaner.

Step 2

Fill a second bucket with clear water for rinsing. Put drop cloths or old towels below the area you're going to clean.

Step 3

Starting at the bottom of whatever you are washing, use a sponge to wash the painted trim. The Old House Journal suggests using a natural sea sponge instead of a synthetic one. Working from bottom to top prevents dirty water from running down and soiling the lower areas.

Step 4

Rinse the surface from the top down, using your second sponge and the bucket of clean water.

Step 5

Buff the surface dry with clean dry rags or paper towels.