Vista Whiteboard Cleaning Guide

Ever wondered how to clean a whiteboard? This guide will assist you in how to clean your whiteboard to ensure best performance.

With proper use and maintenance, your Vista whiteboard will look like new for years. Follow these tips on the best way to clean a whiteboard.

Vista Whiteboard

Cleaning a whiteboard for First Use

  1. If present, remove the protective film.
  2. Wipe board with a clean cloth moistened with a high quality whiteboard cleaner.
  3. Wipe surface with a clean cloth.
  4. You now have a clean whiteboard surface to start from.
Diagram of remove clear film from board before use

General Whiteboard Cleaning Method

  1. Spray a light mist of Vista Whiteboard Cleaner over the whiteboard surface. Too much cleaner will inhibit its effectiveness.
  2. Using a soft paper towel or a lint free cloth, clean the board surface until all traces of cleaner and dirt are removed and the board surface is buffed to a shine.
  3. Run a clean dry finger across the board surface – if you can feel resistance the board is clean. If your finger slides easily across the surface it still has residue on it that must be removed.

Note: Whiteboards should be cleaned on a daily basis. We recommend using Vista Daily Whiteboard Cleaner to ensure the board surface is clean and no shadowing or surface build up occurs. The frequency of cleaning will depend on board use, location and the conditions to which the board is exposed.


Q: What causes surface buildup?

A: There are a few possible causes of surface build up such as dirty erasers, board position/location, and cleaners.

  1. Dirty erasers
    Erasers need to be replaced regularly due to pigment build up, which will cause the eraser to transfer the build-up to the whiteboard and not clean properly. Do not spray whiteboard cleaner onto the eraser for ease of cleaning as this will, over time, cause surface and cleaning issues
  2. Board position/location
    If the board is in the path of the air conditioner it may be exposed to airborne impurities (fumes, oils, etc) which can form a film on the board surface and transfer to markers and erasers. Furthermore, moisture carried by the air conditioner may cause a fine film of water to build up on the board surface, thus reducing the effectiveness of the dry wipe marker. Hand creams and similar products will also leave a residue.
  3. Cleaners
    Only use cleaners designed for whiteboard. Using alternative cleaning agents can leave a film on the whiteboard surface, which will hinder the whiteboard quality and effective use.

Q: How do I remove surface build up or shadowing?

A: Some whiteboard markers are heavily pigmented and therefore require stronger chemicals to hold the particles in suspension. This can leave a strong residue that will attract further build up. If a board has severe build up or shadowing on the surface and does not respond to the whiteboard cleaner, try these products in the following order:

  1. Vista Deep Clean Whiteboard Cleaner
  2. Methylated Spirits
  3. Lacquer thinners
  4. No brand ‘non oily’ nail polish remover

Branded nail polish remover have additives to care for your nails and hands (moisturisers and similar) so a more generic or home brand product is better to use as they are closer to being pure acetone. After the build up is removed, clean the whiteboard surface with a Vista Daily Whiteboard Cleaner to remove any traces of the chemicals.

Warning! If the problem occurs on a printed board, extreme care must be taken using the above mentioned products as the must not be used over the vinyl lines, letters or printed graphics!

Q: Why won’t my whiteboard erase?

A: There are a few possible causes for this issue.

  • Magnetic whiteboards are supplied with a protective film of plastic on the surface. Check that it has been removed. Ensure you clean the whiteboard surface with a Vista cleaner after you remove the protective film.
  • Check that it is a dry wipe marker that has been used. Permanent marker writing can be ‘erased’ by writing over the marks with a dry erase maker, or by cleaning with isopropyl alcohol.
  • Is the eraser clean and dry? A dirty or damp eraser will cause smudges and allow a grime build up.
  • Has the ink been allowed to dry? Different pen brands and colours have varying drying times. It is important that dry erase markers are dry when being erased. The use of old or inferior quality whiteboard markers will be a factor in whiteboard surfaces being difficult to clean.
  • It can be difficult to remove writing that has been on the board for a long time.
  • Whiteboards near air conditioners can be difficult to erase at times due to the vapours being emitted from the air conditioner.
  • Strong fluorescent light and direct sunlight can cause a ‘baking’ effect on the marker ink, hence making it more difficult to erase.

Q: How to clean a whiteboard with permanent marker?

A: To remove/clean permanent marker from a whiteboard simply use a whiteboard marker and ‘scribble’ over the top of the permanent lines. Then wipe this off with your whiteboard eraser. Clean with Vista whiteboard cleaner. Works best with markers that contain Xylene. If this doesn’t work use isopropyl alcohol to clean.


It is important that you clean the whiteboard frequently with Vista Daily Whiteboard Cleaner to avoid build up of body oils, grime and similar on the board surface. You are OK to use other brands of whiteboard cleaner.

Warning! Please refrain from using glass cleaners or any other type of household or industrial cleaning agents as they leave a film on the whiteboard surface. We recommend using Vista Deep Clean Whiteboard Cleaner or isopropyl alcohol to remove heavy stains.

Should you have any questions about your Vista whiteboard surface or any of our products please contact us.

Recommended products to compliment your Vista Whiteboard.

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Vista Whiteboard eraser
Vista Magnetic Pen Holder
Vista Magnetic Pen Holder
Vista whiteboard eraser replacement pads

Vista Whiteboard Eraser
Replacement pads

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