Fixing a Chalkboard That Can't Be Written On?

January 1, 2007

I have a chalkboard that seems to have a coating of some sort over it now and I can't write on it anymore. Is there something that would take care of this for me.


Lorie from Ontario, NY


By Michele (Guest Post)
January 3, 20071 found this helpful
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I have heard that you can 'recondition' your chalkboard by doing this... take a piece of chalk and hold it lengthwise to the board and go all over the board with it...then wipe it off as usual with a eraser or dry paper towel. You might have to do this a couple of times. Hope this helps.

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January 12, 20070 found this helpful
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I actually went to lowes and bought chalkboard paint. It paints on smooth and when there is a problem, you can paint it over again and again. Also there is magnetic paint which you can prime on in several coats. it will make the board magnet and also chalk. I painted my kitchen table with the chalkboard paint and it was a big hit with my teenage daughter and her friends, also cool for putting those to do notes that always seemed to get overlooked. Hard to overlook large pink letters!
You tend to wear through quicker, but then I just get out the pint can and repaint.

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December 5, 20070 found this helpful
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rub chalkboard with "0000" (extra fine) steel wool.

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By Dee (Guest Post)
May 28, 20080 found this helpful
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Use Dawn Power Dissolver (it's for gunked up pans and such). Works like a charm! I just did my chalk board with it and it's beautiful and easy to write on now! You should be able to get it at any grocery store or Wal-mart.

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December 5, 20160 found this helpful
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This worked for me! Thank you so much. I bought a chalkboard with hooks from Lowes. It worked fine for a few weeks and then it just wouldn't let me write on it today. I put Dawn on a hot, wet rag and wiped it down then dried it. Works like a charm.

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August 9, 2020

I can no longer write on my chalkboard. I have used Dawn dish soap, tried using chalk, length wise all over it and nothing is helping. Anyone know something that might work?


August 9, 20200 found this helpful
Best Answer

You may have ruined the finish of the board. You could try making home made or buying a store bought lemon oil and cleaning it. If that doesn't work, you would probably be best served buying a chalkboard paint and refinishing it. I haven't purchased on in years so I hope they are better than when I tried this a few years ago. I think I used a Krylon spray and it had a gloppy texture and the chalk skipped. Maybe one of the other posters here has experience with better brands! Post back with an update!

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August 9, 20200 found this helpful
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There are several ways you can restore this chalkboard after using Dawn soap on it.

Add a few drops of lemon oil to a clean cloth. Now put this in a sealed plastic bag overnight. The next day uses this cloth to clean the chalkboard and get rid of the residue left by the soap.

If this does not seem to work for you and you are still not able to work on the chalkboard you can use 1/2 a cup of vinegar and warm water to clean the chalkboard and remove the soap residue from the board surface.

They also sell special cleaning cloths for a chalkboard that you should be able to buy at an art supply store. If you have some Endust at home you can try to use this to clean the chalkboard.

If nothing else seems to work or help out you may need to sand down the board and reapply the paint to the board in order to fix it. They do sell chalkboard paint that you can buy in some stores that will allow you to completely refinish your chalkboard.

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