Removing Dry Paint From Brushes Is Easy With This Cleaner You Probably Forgot Existed

It can be quite a sense of pride to finish a painting job on your own. While you are admiring and showing off your DIY skills, though, you might forget to clean out the brushes right away. By the time you remember a day or two later, you find a caked-on mess on the bristles. However, you don't have to throw them away. There's still a chance to rescue your paintbrushes, even when you forget to rinse them, using a few different tricks. One hack you may not know is to use Murphy Oil Soap with the brushes, allowing the cleaning product to rehydrate and remove the paint from the bristles.

Failing to clean old paint from the bristles of the brush basically makes it unusable again unless you can remove the clumps without tearing the bristles out of the brush handle. Bristles become stiff when you fail to clean them properly, meaning they cannot flex to apply the paint in a smooth manner.

Murphy Oil Soap allows you to clean a number of tough situations. You can use Murphy Oil Soap to remove stuck-on gum from wooden floors, for example. It also makes your doors seem as good as new after you dust them. Because Murphy Oil Soap is commonly used for things like cleaning horse tack, black powder weapons, and wood furniture, you might not think of it as an option for removing dried paint from brushes. However, it's surprisingly effective.

How to use Murphy Oil Soap to clean dried paint from your brushes

To perform this dried paint removal hack, create a mixture of one part Murphy Oil Soap and one part warm water. Place the mixture in a Mason jar, as this tall container can hold enough liquid to remove dried-on paint from the bristles as well as from the lower part of the handle for the brush. If you have a particularly wide paintbrush, though, you may need a larger container to fit everything inside. Leave it to soak for at least 30 minutes before rinsing it thoroughly with warm water.

This should work to free up the dried-on materials, making your paintbrush useable again for another project. If not, you can repeat the process. You also can soak it overnight in the mixture without causing any harm to the bristles. A major benefit of using Murphy Oil Soap is that it softens and conditions the bristles to be almost like new.

Should you have a particularly stubborn bit of dried paint on your brush or should it be thickly embedded inside the bristles, it's also possible to soak the brush in Murphy Oil Soap without diluting it with warm water. Place the brush into the container with the Murphy Oil Soap and let it sit overnight. Then, run a plastic hair comb through the bristles to gently pull loose any clumps of paint near the handle where it holds the bristles.