Thrifty Tip Tuesday: How to Clean a Chalkboard Wall

by Handjobs For The Home on October 18, 2011

A few months back I decided to paint my oddly shaped kitchen wall with some chalkboard paint. I thought it would be a great way to manage my to-do lists, keep the pantry stocked, and doddle while I was waiting for jams to set.

It was all fun and games until I had to clean said chalkboard wall. It never came clean…ever. The wall always looked like someone had wiped a dirty rag all over it and allowed it to dry. I’d be left with big smudgy circles of all different colors–obviously, this was not the look I was going for. I was all set to paint the wall back to its original color, until I discovered the wonders of Coca Cola as a cleaning product.

 Uh hu, I’m for real.

I had read about using Coca Cola to clean a chalkboard wall one rainy afternoon on some random blog, but I sort of thought it was a bunch of rubbish. I mean really, a can of soda to clean the wall? Wouldn’t that leave a big sticky mess? Nope. In fact, it left no mess at all, just a clean smooth surface to make pretty with some chalk.

I was so excited to discover this wonderful trick I decided to decorate the wall with that evenings dinner party menu.

How do you clean your chalkboard wall? Got any tricks of the trade? Leave a comment!

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Beckie@Cubicle57 October 18, 2011 at 8:11 pm

Shut. The. Front. Door.
I regularly clean out my insides with that delicious Coca-cola. And now I can use it for good on my chalkboard wall too? Brills. Hugs!

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Aj October 20, 2011 at 12:04 am

I know right? I was pretty impressed. Hugs to my Astoria neighbor!

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Esther October 19, 2011 at 2:14 am

Thanks for the tip! I am soon to paint my chalkboard wall in the kitchen and now I’ll know how to clean it! Coke, who knew? To clean the chalkboard, and to make rum and coke, is pretty much the only way I’ll be using it in my house!

Love your wooden facebook/twitter buttons, by the way. Did you design your blog yourself and if so did you find the Thesis theme hard to use?

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Aj October 20, 2011 at 12:07 am

Im with ya Esther, I just happened to have a can of coke in the fridge from something or other and figured I’d give it a try. Now I’ll have to add it to my cleaning supply list!

I love using Thesis. It’s very user friendly and great for beginner bloggers, but also has tons of room to grow in.

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Meg October 21, 2011 at 7:07 pm

Coke is great for cleaning off the crud on your car’s engine, so I can see how it would do well to clean your chalkboard, too!

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Dana October 31, 2011 at 2:30 pm

If you live down South and you’re scared the sugar residue will bring the bugs even if it doesn’t leave the sticky, there’s always Diet Coke. Which is probably a better use for it than drinking it (aspartame sucks!). This is a cool idea. I don’t have a chalkboard wall but sometimes I am tempted. This would be a good idea for wiping off smaller articles that have been painted with chalkboard paint, too–like, I found some little piggy banks on Etsy that had been coated with chalkboard paint. Though you’d want to dampen a rag with the stuff and wipe carefully.

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Bethany January 6, 2013 at 3:11 am

Okay, I need you to break it down for me even further. I have a HUGE wall in my elementary school library that I painted with chalkboard paint (lots and lots of chalkboard paint). Getting it clean has been elusive for me. It drives me crazy. So, I am ALL TOO EXCITED to try using Coke to get the job done. So, let me ask some potentially stupid questions: Do you pour Coke on a rag and wipe? Do you pour Coke in a bucket and mix it with anything else (water, dish soap, etc.) and then dip a rag and go? Do you just pour the Coke down the wall?! <– this is what I envisioned and decided to get clarification! Thanks! :)

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Lilly February 4, 2013 at 8:23 pm

Hi,
I would also like to know how does the cleaning work… And do you wash it with clean water afterwards? Isn’t cola very sticky? THANKS!

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SoGalinSoCal April 3, 2013 at 10:20 pm

I’m also looking for clarification on how exactly to go about this! We painted a wall in our office breakroom for fun doodles and questions of the day, but I hate the chalkboard streaks. I actually just bought some “bistro” chalkboard markers that I’ll be using moving forward. But, I thought I should at least TRY to get rid of all the smudgies first.

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