- Remove excess paint from the brush, and then wet the brush well.
- After wetting, swirl the brush against a bar of soap until the bristles are sudsy.
- Rinse and flex the bristles under water until the water runs clear.
- Squeeze the bristles with your hand to remove excess water.
- Do NOT soak synthetic brushes; instead, hang them on nails or hooks, or place them face-up in a storage container to dry.
Natural brushes used with alkyd paint are cleaned with solvent, such as paint thinner or turpentine. (Turpentine is stronger and makes the cleaning go faster, but it is more expensive). To clean your brushes, follow the instructions on the product.
Make sure you clean with solvents in a ventilated area, as they are toxic. (Our tip: Work the solvent through the bristles into the center of the brush. Make sure that the solvent gets down under the ferrule, which is the metal band at the end of the bristles.)
Rollers should be scraped to remove as much paint as possible. Then, run under water (for latex) or cleaned with a solvent (for alkyd) until the paint is removed. Store washed rollers on their ends to avoid flattening the roller nap.
Remove dried splatters on areas such as floors, woodwork, and your shoes with a chemical cleaner, such as Valspar’s Goof Off. Even latex paint, when it is completely dry, must be cleaned up with a chemical cleaner. Test your chemical cleaner on an inconspicuous area first, to make sure the area is colorfast. Apply the cleaner to a paper towel or dry cloth and rub in small, quick strokes.