How to Remove Oil Stains on Driveways
Oil stains on driveways look awful, and tarnish your home exterior, even if the spots are still fairly new. Try to avoid oil spots on your home’s driveway and in your garage when possible, and try to remove those stains quickly, before they really set in.
If the stain has been there for a while, like from before purchasing the house, you might need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Largo that can remove the most set-in stains on concrete surfaces.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mainly, oil from vehicles is the cause for stains on concrete driveways. This might be oil, gas or transmission fluids – or a combination. Some of the typical ways your concrete gets stained are from:
- Fixing your own car
- Filling up the gas in a lawn mower
- A leak that should be checked out by a mechanic
But, there are many other things that can leave an ugly oil stain on your concrete. So let’s review some of the best DIY tips to remove those stains!
DIY Oil Stain Removal Tips
CAT LITTER FOR OIL STAINS
Cat litter is a easy first step for fresh oil spots where there is excess oil that has to be dried up.
Sprinkle cat litter all over the oil stain, really getting it down into the stain by stomping on it with your feet. It’s best to leave the litter on the stain for 24 hours so it can absorb as much as possible. Scoop it up or sweep it off of the driveway the next day and repeat if necessary.
Throw away used litter so your pets and wildlife don’t eat it and get sick from it.
Next you can follow up with one of the following do-it-yourself concrete cleaning techniques.
COCA-COLA FOR OIL STAINS
You might have heard urban legends about accident clean-up crews using Coke to clean up the roads, but, be assured, that is not true. But, Coke does have strong cleaning properties when it comes to greasy stains, in part due to its carbonated bubbles, but mainly from the phosphoric acid in the soda.
Pour a generous amount of Coke on the oil stain, then cover it with dishwashing detergent (Blue Dawn is widely considered the most effective). Scrub hard with a stiff brush, using circular motions throughout.
Rinse and repeat if you have to.
BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS
Baking soda is a common home cleaning remedy product.
To remove an oil stain on a driveway, you’ll first want to cover the stain with baking soda and then let it sit for a while, somewhere from 15 minutes to a few hours. This should absorb most of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous concrete.
Then, add blue dishwashing soap and some water and scrub hard until there is a thick paste. Again, you can let this sit for maximum 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
Most homeowners already use this to clean off tough stains on clothing. It’s actually a great option for removing tough oil stains on concrete too!
Stir powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts according to 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 some water to make a paste, scrub and rinse.
This is more of a gentle cleaning method, so it could be necessary to repeat the process one or two times. But there is a good chance it will work!
DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Largo
Some concrete oil stains on a driveway are too tough for DIY home remedies to remove. That’s when it may be time to call a professional pressure washing company to clean your home’s concrete surfaces.
We don’t recommend pressure washing your driveway yourself to save a few dollars. You can cause major damage that is difficult to fix if you don’t know what you’re doing. The high pressure water can break and loosen concrete, and it can create streaks that look almost as bad as the oil stains.
Calling Largo Pressure Washing is definitely the smart choice. We know the best ways to clean concrete without destroying it, such as:
- The right PSI and GPM settings to use to remove stains
- Which nozzle will penetrate concrete without damaging it
- The best distance to spray the concrete from
- Solutions that can help lighten stains
Largo Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps to clean the concrete– the most effective method. Most homeowners don’t have the patience to do it right. They want quick results.
A professional pressure washing company in Largo can also offer protective sealing services for your driveway so oil stains are less likely in the future.