How to Remove Oil Stains on Driveways
Oil stains on driveways look awful, and tarnish your home exterior, even if the stains are still fairly new. Try to avoid oil stains on your driveway and in your garage when possible, and try to eliminate those stains fast, before they set in.
If the stain has been there for a while, like from before purchasing the home, you may need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Vancouver that has the ability to eliminate the most set-in stains on concrete.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mainly, oil from cars is the cause for oil-stained concrete driveways. This could be oil, gas or transmission fluids – or a combination. Some of the most common ways your concrete gets stained are from:
- Fixing your own car
- Filling up the gas in a lawn mower
- A leak that needs to be checked out by a mechanic
But, of course, there are several other things that can create an unsightly oil stain on your concrete. So let’s look at a few of the best DIY ways to remove those stains!
DIY Oil Stain Removal Tips
CAT LITTER FOR OIL STAINS
Cat litter is a simple first step for fresh oil stains where there is a lot of oil that has to be dried up.
Sprinkle cat litter over the oil, getting it down into the stain by stomping on it with your feet. It’s a good idea to leave the litter on the stain for 24 hours so it will absorb as much as possible. Scrape it up or sweep it off the following day and repeat as necessary.
Throw away used litter so your pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick.
Next you can follow up with one of the following do-it-yourself cleaning methods.
COCA-COLA FOR OIL STAINS
You might have heard urban legends about accident clean-up crews using Coke to clean up the roads, but, rest assured, that is not true. But, Coke does have strong cleaning properties for greasy stains, partly because of its carbonated bubbles, but mostly from the phosphoric acid in the soda.
Pour a good amount of Coke on top of the oil stain, then cover it with dishwashing soap (Blue Dawn is widely considered the most effective). Scrub hard with a stiff brush, using circular motions.
Rinse and repeat if necessary.
BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS
Baking soda is another common home cleaning remedy ingredient.
To eliminate an oil stain on a driveway, you’ll first need to cover the stain with baking soda and let it sit for a while, anywhere from 15 minutes to two or three hours. This should absorb most of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous surface.
Then, add that famous blue dishwashing soap and water and scrub hard until you have created a thick paste. Again, you can let this sit for the best penetration, or you can continue to scrub in a circular motion, then rinse.
Just like with the Coke method, you might need to repeat the process.
LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS
Many homeowners already use this to get rid of bad stains on clothing. It’s also a great option for removing bad oil stains from concrete too!
Stir powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts based on the size of the stain. You want to cover it entirely. Let this mixture sit on the oil stain for an hour or longer, then add water to create a paste, scrub and rinse.
This is more of a gentle cleaning method, so it might be necessary to repeat the process one or two times. But there is a possibility it will work!
DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Vancouver
Some oil stains on a driveway are too tough for home remedies. That’s when it may be time to call a professional pressure washing company to clean your concrete surfaces.
We don’t recommend pressure washing your driveway on your own to save a few dollars. You can cause major harm that is extremely complicated to fix if you don’t know how to properly pressure wash concrete. The high pressure water stream can break and loosen concrete, and it can create streaks on a driveway that look almost as bad as the oil stains.
Calling PRO Vancouver Pressure Washing is definitely the best choice. We know the best methods to clean concrete without damaging it, including:
- The right PSI and GPM levels to use
- Which nozzle will penetrate concrete without chipping it
- The correct distance to spray the concrete from
- Solutions that can help lighten stains
PRO Vancouver Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps to clean the concrete– the most effective method. Most homeowners and other companies don’t have the patience to do it correctly. They want immediate results.
A professional pressure washing company in Vancouver can also provide protective sealing services for your driveway so oil stains are less likely in the future.