How to Remove Oil Stains on Driveways
Oil stains on driveways look terrible, and tarnish your home exterior, even if the spots are relatively new. Try to avoid oil spots on your driveway and in your garage when possible, and try to eliminate those stains fast, before they really set in.
If the stain has been there for a while, like from before you purchased the home, you might need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Costa Mesa that can eliminate even the most set-in stains on concrete surfaces.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mostly, oil from cars is the cause for stains on concrete driveways. This could be oil, gasoline or transmission fluid – or a combination. Some of the most common ways your concrete gets stained are from:
- Servicing your own car
- Filling up the lawn mower
- A leak that needs to be checked out by a auto mechanic
But, there are several other things that can create an ugly oil stain on your concrete. So let’s consider 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 easy first step for new oil spots where there is excess oil that has to be dried up.
Sprinkle cat litter over the oil, 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 will absorb as much as possible. Scrape it up or sweep it off the following day and repeat as necessary.
Get rid of used litter so your pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick.
Next you can proceed with one of the following do-it-yourself cleaning techniques.
COCA-COLA FOR OIL STAINS
You might have heard urban legends about accident clean-up crews using Coke to clean the roads, but, rest assured, that is a myth. But, Coke does have powerful cleaning properties when it comes to greasy stains, in part due to 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 detergent (Blue Dawn is widely accepted as the most effective). Scrub hard with a stiff brush, using circular motions throughout.
Rinse and repeat if necessary.
BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS
Baking soda is another common home cleaning remedy product.
To eliminate an oil stain on a driveway, you’ll first want to cover the stain with baking soda and let it sit for a little bit, somewhere from 20 minutes to two or three hours. This should absorb a lot of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous concrete.
Next, add blue dishwashing liquid and some water and scrub hard until you have created a thick paste. Again, let this sit for the best penetration, or continue to scrub in a circular motion, then rinse.
Just like with the Coke method, you might need to repeat the process one or two times.
LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS
Most homeowners already use this to wash off dirty stains on clothing. It’s actually a great option for getting rid of tough oil stains on concrete as well!
Mix powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts based on the size of the stain. You will want to cover it completely. Let this dry mixture stay on the oil stain for an hour or more, then add some water to make a paste, scrub and rinse.
This is more of a gentle cleaning process, so it could be necessary to repeat the process two or three times. But there is a good chance it will work!
DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Costa Mesa
Some oil stains on a driveway are too difficult for DIY 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 yourself to save a few dollars. You can cause major damage that is extremely difficult to repair if you don’t know what you’re doing. The high pressure water can break and loosen concrete, and it can create streaks on a driveway that look just as bad as the oil stains.
Hiring CMC Costa Mesa Pressure Washing is definitely the smart choice. We know the best methods to clean concrete without destroying it, including:
- The right PSI and GPM settings to use
- Which nozzle will penetrate concrete without damaging it
- The correct distance to spray the concrete from
- Solutions that can help lighten stains
CMC Costa Mesa Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps it takes to clean the concrete little by little – the most effective process. Most homeowners and other companies don’t have the patience to do it correctly. They want fast results.
A professional pressure washing company in Costa Mesa can also provide protective sealing services for your driveway so oil stains are less likely in the future.