How to Remove Kerosene Soot From Walls and Ceilings


Tony asked: How do I clean kerosene soot off of aluminum? We have a screened in room in the country. We used a kerosene heater and a film has developed on the aluminum walls.

Kerosene heaters can quickly leave smoke and soot marks behind on every surface in the house. Fortunately, removing the stains is not difficult, but can be a bit time consuming. Here are some steps to freshen up the area and remove the soot marks.

You Will Need:

  • Tri-sodium phosphate (TSP)
  • Murphy Oil Soap
  • Soft cloths
  • Soot sponge (optional)
  • Vacuum with attachments
  • Water

Steps to Remove the Soot:


  1. Begin by vacuuming the wall to remove as much of the carbon as possible.
  2. Next, wipe the area with soot sponge. These sponges are coated with a cleaner and designed to absorb the soot in the pores.
  3. Mix one tablespoon of TSP with one gallon of water.
  4. Moisten a sponge or soft cloth with the solution and wipe it over the soot-stained area.
  5. If the stain remains, wipe the area with Murphy Oil Soap.
  6. Rinse with clean water.
  7. Dry with a soft cloth.

Additional Tips and Ideas

  • Ash vacs are specially designed for vacuuming away soot without redistributing it into the air. They utilize special filters to make cleaning more effective.
  • If the soot is not removed with the methods above, a slightly abrasive cleaner, such as a powdered cleaner, may help remove the soot stains.


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