How to Erase Chalk Markers

How to Erase Chalk Markers?

If you use chalk markers a lot, sooner or later you’re going to run into problems with erasing them from the work surface. While chalk markers can be used on various surfaces such as glass and tiles, they do sometimes leave smudgy residues. To avoid this problem, at least as far as possible, be sure to use chalk markers only on these types of surfaces:

  • Glass
  • Whiteboards
  • Painted chalkboards
  • Chalkboard labels
  • Contact paper
  • Ceramic
  • Metal

How to Prevent Markers Leaving Ghostly Smudges

First, be sure to check the instructions on your chosen brand and see if it’s meant for use on porous or non-porous surfaces only.

If they’re for use on non-porous surfaces only, you need to learn how to identify these. Non-porous surfaces are very smooth to the touch like glass, whiteboards and granite.

Porous surfaces will absorb the ink and will not wipe clean. These include concrete, wood, painted walls and paper. The small openings in the surface will absorb ink, making it difficult or impossible to erase.

You may think it’s okay to use chalkboard markers on any chalkboard. This isn’t the case! There are a lot of different kinds of chalkboards and some are porous. Low quality painted MDF ones are to be used only with traditional chalk. PVC or acrylic chalkboards may be alright to use markers on, but you may get some smudging. Slate chalkboards are great for using markers on as it’s rough but not porous. Porcelain sheet chalkboards, on the other hand, are exceptional quality boards and will never mark from chalk markers.

If you do want to use your markers on a porous surface, like a restaurant wall or a wooden board, spray it first with a clear, dry-erase coating. This will render the surface non-porous but will remain invisible beneath your creative artwork.

How to Erase from Porous and Non-Porous Surfaces

Your best bet is a vinegar and water solution. Rub it on with a clean cloth. Leave it to soak in for five minutes or so without wiping dry. Now scrub it with your cloth and see if it removes the ink. You can also try a mixture of vinegar and chalkboard cleaner. Thoroughly soak the surface with the mixture, leave it for five minutes, then rub it with a damp cloth. As a last resort, try an ammonia-based household surface cleaner and a damp cloth.

You should have an easier time erasing from non-porous surfaces. Try a clean, damp cloth first. If the ink has been on the board for a long time, water may not be enough. Use a whiteboard cleaning kit which will include a spray solution and microfiber cloth, or you can also try a baby wipe.

Again, if these measures don’t work on your non-porous surface, try an ammonia-based household cleaning product, but don’t press too hard. Applying too much pressure as you write or draw can create a dent in the surface, which can trap the ink, just like pores do.