/ / Dry Erase Marker Removal: How to Get It Off Walls Easily

Dry Erase Marker Removal: How to Get It Off Walls Easily

Your child just drew on the wall with dry erase markers instead of the marker board. Don’t panic! Here’s the simple solution you need for Dry Erase Marker Removal!

When my son drew on his bedroom wall with dry erase markers, I thought it would never come off. Then I discovered this easy trick for dry erase marker removal. Let me show you how to get dry erase marker off walls in today’s tutorial.

MUST PIN! Dry Erase Marker Removal - I know I'm going to need an easy way to get dry erase marker off walls sooner or later!

When C1, our four-year-old, started preschool this year, we wanted to create a little communication center in his bedroom where we could hang his school schedule, a monthly calendar and make notes of upcoming events.

We thought the large magnetic marker board we found at Costco would do the trick. The dry erase markers and eraser both had magnets built into them so they could be attached directly to the board whenever they’re not in use. We knew having dry erase markers within reach of a four-year-old was very risky and in hindsight, not our best decision!

When we installed the dry erase marker board, we went over the rules with C1: 

  1. Always put the lids back on the markers when you’re not using them so they don’t dry out.
  2. Keep the markers on the board so we don’t lose them.
  3. NEVER EVER write on anything with the dry erase markers except for the marker board. If we find you’re using them on walls, books or toys, we’ll take them away. Despite the warnings, we knew it was only a matter of time before we’d have to figure out a solution for dry erase marker removal.

Sure enough, within the first six weeks, we found marker on the wall in C1’s room. Thankfully, it was just a small green dry erase marker line about 4-5 inches long. It looked more like he’d gotten overly exuberant drawing on the board and accidentally went over the frame:

MUST PIN! Dry Erase Marker Removal - I know I'm going to need an easy way to get dry erase marker off walls sooner or later!

Easy Dry Erase Marker Removal from Walls

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What You Need:

  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton balls or cotton swabs
  • A clean wet rag or wash cloth

Instructions:

  1. Put a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball.
    MUST PIN! Dry Erase Marker Removal - I know I'm going to need an easy way to get dry erase marker off walls sooner or later!
  2. Lightly wipe the rubbing alcohol over the dry erase marker lines on the wall. The dry erase marker will magically disappear.
  3. Wipe the wall with a clean wet rag or wash cloth to remove any residue from the rubbing alcohol.

It’s that easy! When the incident first occurred, I tried rubbing the spot on the wall vigorously with a wet wash cloth. It didn’t do anything. We were afraid we’d have to repaint the wall to cover the dry erase marker. Then I remembered how we used rubbing alcohol to remove pink highlighter out of fabric last winter and thought that might work. Sure enough, the dry erase marker was gone in an instant!

MUST PIN! I Dry Erase Marker Removal - know I'm going to need an easy way to get dry erase marker off walls sooner or later!

I only tried this technique on the light yellow walls in C1’s bedroom. I don’t know how it would work on darker walls. If you try it, comment below and let us know. I did notice a small amount of yellow paint came off on the cotton ball, but the wall looks as good as new.

Unfortunately, we found orange dry erase marker on the wall just a few days later. This time, I used a cotton swab rather than a cotton ball, so it didn’t take as much paint off the wall when I removed the dry erase marker.

Meanwhile, after two strikes, we also removed all the dry erase markers out of C1’s bedroom. Lesson learned: Don’t let your 4-year-old use dry erase markers unsupervised.

Thankfully, it was only a few lines and dots on the wall. He didn’t actually scribble or draw anything. He also didn’t get any dry erase marker on himself or any toys or books. My Mom STILL holds it against me that I drew stick figures all over a brand new steel door with a permanent marker when I was around the same age. She said she knew I was the culprit because all the stick figures had square heads!

If this tip for Dry Erase Marker Removal worked for you, please share it with your friends or pin it for later:

MUST PIN! I Dry Erase Marker Removal - know I'm going to need an easy way to get dry erase marker off walls sooner or later!

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Dry erase marker cleaning questions

How do you get dry erase marker off the walls without rubbing alcohol?

There are a few other options you can try. Some people suggest using a product called Krud Kuter. Others say dry erase board cleaner works like magic! Just remember to spray the solution on a rack or cotton ball, not directly on the wall.

How do you get dry erase marker off clothes?

Apply some rubbing alcohol to the back of the cloth and dab with a paper towel. The towel should start absorbing the ink from the marker. If this doesn’t work you can try Murphey’s Oil soap instead.

How do you get dry erase marker out of carpet?

Mix a solution of 1/2 a cup Free & Clear All with enough water to make a paste. Rub that into the stain and let it sit. Begin adding more water and dab until the stain comes up.

20 Comments

  1. Hi, just tried it on a wall I painted with Dry Erase Paint. I had written on it with red dry erase marker and found it wouldn’t erase off. The blue one did however. Unfortunately the alcohol didn’t work on my dry erase painted door. Love your blog.

    1. Oh Susan, I’m so sorry to hear the rubbing alcohol didn’t work for you on the Dry Erase Paint. I’ve never used Dry Erase Paint before. Seems funny that not all dry erase markers will erase off Dry Erase Paint! How frustrating for you?! Have you tried using actual Dry Erase Board Cleaner? Another reader just mentioned her son wrote all over the walls in her home and glass cleaner removed most of it for her. You could try that too. Please do let me know how you finally get it off!

  2. My son just did this! But I was less lucky than you; he hid behind the door and drew all over the wall and the back of the door. I got most of it off with glass cleaner, but I will have to try the alcohol for the little bits that didn’t come off.

    1. Oh noooo…. Beth! You must have been so frustrated to find that huge mess. I’m glad to hear glass cleaner took most of it off for you. Let me know if rubbing alcohol works on the rest. Good luck!

    1. You’re definitely going to want to hang on to this tip, Amanda! You never know when a little one with a dry erase marker will strike your home!

      1. I have a dry erase board on my wall and I was drawing on it but a little got on the wall. I tried to rub it off with water but then it smeared. So I went onto Pinterest and found your tip! It came right off. Thanks for the tip!

        1. Oh yay! I’m so glad this simple trick worked to get the dry erase marker off your wall, Sarah. Thank you for letting me know!

  3. Such a great tip, Carrie! I just recently started letting you-know-who use dry erase markers for projects (the rainbow eating chart) and it’s been getting on our fridge, and the wall next to the fridge. I’m totally trying out this tip because I was actually thinking just yesterday how in the world I was going to get that off! Thanks friend. 🙂

    1. Oh Ashlyn! I can just imagine how carried away he’s getting with marking up that cute Rainbow eating chart! Let me know if rubbing alcohol does the trick on the walls. Does water get it off the fridge? Or will you try rubbing alcohol on that too? Glad I could post this for you just when you needed it! That’s what friends are for, right? 🙂

  4. Oh, how I could have used this tip a few years ago! LOL! I will definitely store this away for future use, though. You never know when you might need it! 😉

    1. You just never know when you might need this, Sarah! I’m sure I’ll need to put it to use again myself. Probably sooner, rather than later – though I DID take the dry erase markers away now.

  5. This morning I discovered that my grandson decided to swipe the used dry-erase market across a wall painted in a light color. This left a trail of muted, darkish smudges in the wall.
    I searched the Internet and found your suggestion. I was skeptical, but it did remove the dry-erase ink marks.

    Thanks for posting your suggestion.

    -Joe-

    1. Hi Joe,
      I’m sure it was a shock to find the mark from your grandson on the wall. I’m so glad this solution worked for you! Thanks for letting us know.

      Best wishes,
      Carrie
      Ideas for the Home by Kenarry

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