cleaning plate covers to make your home new again

One of the things I did (and I strongly recommend everyone do) to prep the family room for painting is remove all the light switch and plug covers.


I put all the plate covers in a little plastic bin as I removed them from the walls.


Once I had them all collected I noticed how gross and filthy they all were. Many even had dried paint on them, so I think the previous owner must have just painted around them when they painted.


When you remove the covers to paint it’s an excellent time to take advantage of the situation and give them a nice good washing.


It only took me an additional 5-10 minutes to hand wash all of them. I was also able to easily remove all the dried paint from them with my fingernail.


Just cleaning your plate covers is an easy {free!} way to make your house look brand-new again.


Huge difference!

Even if you aren’t painting, if you want to spruce up your room and make it feel new again, just wipe down all your switches and plate covers. Because it’s electricity, obviously don’t spray cleaning spray directly onto the cover and switch. Spray some on a cloth and then wipe the covers down.

It’s also a good idea to disinfect your switches and plate covers periodically anyway. Just think how many times a day you (and everyone else) touches the switch and cover to turn it off and on. It’s a breeding ground for germs! Yuck! That and door knobs. Clean your door knobs!

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  1. Very good tip! Another thing – if your house has plate covers you don’t like (for example, my old house had icky 1970s almond-colored covers), they are way cheap to replace if you just want to switch to white. I switched out most of the plate covers in my old house and I think it was only 49 to 99 cents for each one. It freshens up a room so much! The only thing was that then the switches were almond and the plates were white, but no one ever complained to me about it. 😉


  2. I always take mine off when I paint and scrub them. The plates in my house were disgusting when we moved in. I wipe them down every couple weeks too. I also wipe the door knobs. Germs for sure!

  3. Yeah, I like the look of white switches, but they DO get grimy. I go around once in a while & wipe them down.

  4. I totally agree, I always clean these when we take them down to paint and it always amazes me what a difference it makes!

  5. I like to have decorative switch covers but some are just white too. We recently got new covers for the living room and after it was done, I asked..why didn’t we replace the switches. I think they are original and the house is over 50. Gross!

  6. Our house is about 60 years old. All of the plate covers in this house were an ugly brass or that beige plastic. Yuck. The brass ones had cool designs though, so I took white appliance paint to them. They look fabulous!

  7. awesome, i like to wipe ours down, especially the one in the kids bathroom cause it always has food bits on it. you have lots of great ideas!!

    santa brought me a new kitchen sink, garbage disposal, and faucet for christmas, i need a tutorial and hand-holding to install it…

  8. Wow! I’ve never gone that far to remove them. Thanks for sharing.

    I would be honored to have you add it to my blog party

    Amaze Me Monday Blog Party

  9. In what solution did you washed the switch plates??

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