How to clean mud off walls – 5 expert methods to get rid of stains

How to spare your home from mud stains and dirt this fall

mudroom with chequered floor and closed cabinetry
(Image credit: Future PLC)

Mud, unfortunately, collects everywhere, on our boots but also on damp raincoats, sports equipment, and our pets. 

Knowing the best tricks to remove mud stains will not only make life easier when cleaning your mudroom and keeping it tidy, but will also mean you can keep entryway walls stain-free when accidents happen.

Here, we outline five pro-cleaner-approved ways to clean mud off your walls for when it inevitably makes its way onto them.

Experts share 5 tips to help you clean mud off walls 

We have also shared some alternative cleaning solutions to have in your cleaning arsenal when the weather turns.

entryway with stripe bench and bespoke cabinetry painted white

(Image credit: Yelena Gerts House of Style and Design)

1. Act quickly

When trying to remove mud off walls, the sooner you tackle a mud stain, the easier it will be. As soon as you notice the stain, let it dry completely, then gently scrape off any excess mud with a plastic scraper or a soft brush.

Try scraping off the excess in a circular motion, and prepare the floor by putting down a tray or some newspaper to collect the fallen mud. Remember to not use a damp cloth at this stage and you may smear the mud along your wall and exacerbate your problem.

2. Prep the surface

According to Hellamaid cleaning company owner, Angela Rubin, before you apply any cleaning solution, you need to prep the walls you want to clean.

You can prep the surface by dusting it with a dry cloth or using a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to remove loose dirt and debris. This helps prevent the mud from spreading during cleaning and making it even harder work.

Once prepped, you are ready to try a number of cleaning solutions to remove the mud without damaging the paintwork or anything underneath.

Angela Rubin
Angela Rubin

Hellamaid is an award-winning cleaning company in Canada that has been featured on multiple global media brands. 

3. Use a gentle cleaner

Purple wood paneled walls in a mudroom with wellies on the floor and hats hung on the wall

(Image credit: Sims Hilditch)

When tackling mud on walls, it is always best to start with a gentle cleaner before using harsh chemicals. There is little point in risking damaging your walls or paintwork with a harsh cleaning product when a more gentle approach would have sufficed.

‘Start with the mildest solution possible,’ advises Karina Toner, operations manager at Spekless Cleaning. ‘Start by creating a mixture of warm water and a small amount of mild dish soap and these should lift light mud stains and marks.’

Next, dampen a clean cloth or sponge with the solution, and gently blot the stain. Avoid scrubbing too vigorously to prevent damage to the paint or wallpaper.

Karina Toner
Karina Toner

Karina is the Operations Manager at Spekless Cleaning, a trusted maid service based in Washington D.C. The team has over five years of experience providing top-quality cleaning services for both residential and commercial clients. Karina oversees every aspect of the business, ensuring that every client gets the same top-notch service and a spotless clean every time. 

4. Try baking soda paste

For tougher mud stains, you can create a paste by mixing baking soda with a small amount of water. This organic, aluminum-free baking soda from Amazon will help clean difficult mud stains without irritating your skin.

Apply the paste mixture to the mud stains and let it sit on the areas for a few minutes. Once slightly dry, gently scrub the mud and paste off with a soft brush or cloth. This soft brush from Amazon works perfectly for removing mud stains. Rinse with clean water and pat dry. 

Baking soda is a mild abrasive that can help lift off stains without harming your walls or surfaces.

5. Vinegar and water solution

vinegar for cleaning

(Image credit: Getty images / Ivan Bajic)

An alternative remedy for cleaning mud off walls to baking soda paste, is to create a solution of equal parts white vinegar and water. Cleaning with vinegar is a simple and effective solution for mud stain removal. Apply the mixture to the stain, leave for a few minutes, and then gently blot and rinse.

White vinegar has a high acidity content which means it has a long shelf life. This is great as you will always have a mud-cleaning solution to hand when you need it. It also means your homemade cleaner will not go off and can be used periodically over time.  

‘If you want to soften the harsh vinegary smell by adding lemon juice or essential oils then you can,’ says Ilya Ornatov from NW Maids, ‘however by adding "fresh" ingredients you must use the solution within a couple of days as it will not stay safe for longer than that.'

Ilya Ornatov
Ilya Ornatov

Ilya Ornatov has been running NW Maids, a cleaning company based in Seattle, Washington for over 10 years. 


How often should you wash your walls?

As part of your general home maintenance, you should look to wash your walls bi-annually. Mud rooms or rooms with high traffic may need to be treated more frequently, depending on how dirty they get day-to-day.

Another tip for removing and cleaning mud off walls is to use a melamine foam eraser, like Mr. Clean Magic Eraser from Amazon. If the mud stain persists, you can create a cleaning solution of rubbing alcohol and warm water in parts (1:1 ratio). Use a cloth to apply this mixture to the stain. Gently rub until the stain disappears then dry the area.

And if it's your new white trainers that have got muddy, wash sneakers the right way to get them looking as good as new.

Seraphina Di Mizzurati
Contributing Editor

Seraphina is a contributing editor at Homes & Gardens, writing Solved features on organizing and storage. She loves to decorate and also grow her own produce from her home in London. Her previous experience includes working at Women's Health and Fabulous Magazine.