Oil stains on driveways look terrible, and age your home exterior, even if the spots are still relatively new. Avoid oil spots on your driveway and in your garage if possible, and attempt to remove those stains right away, before they really set in.
If the stain has been there for a while, like from before you purchased the home, you may need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Alhambra that can remove the most set-in stains on concrete.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mostly, oil from cars is the reason for stains on concrete driveways. This could be oil, gas or transmission fluid – or a combination. Some of the most 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 several other things that can create an ugly oil stain on your concrete. So let’s look at some 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 spots where there is a lot of oil that has to be dried up.
Sprinkle cat litter over the oil stain, really getting it down into the stain by crushing it with your feet. It’s recommended to leave the litter on the stain overnight so it absorbs as much as possible. Scrape it up or sweep it off of the driveway the following day and repeat if necessary.
Get rid of used litter so your pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick from it.
Then you can follow up with one of the following do-it-yourself concrete 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 a myth. However, Coke does have powerful cleaning properties for oily stains, in part due to its carbonated bubbles, but mostly from the phosphoric acid in the soda.
Pour a good amount of Coke on the oil stain, then cover it with dishwashing detergent (Blue Dawn is widely accepted as the most effective). Scrub with a stiff brush, using circular motions throughout.
Rinse and repeat if necessary.
BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS
Baking soda is another popular home cleaning remedy ingredient.
To remove 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, anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours. This should absorb most of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous concrete.
Next, add that famous blue dishwashing soap and water and scrub until you have created a thick paste. Again, you can let this sit for optimal penetration, or you can continue to scrub in a circular pattern, then rinse.
Just like with the Coke method, you might have to repeat the process one or two times.
LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS
Most homeowners already use this to remove dirty stains on clothing. It’s actually a great product for getting rid of tough oil stains on concrete too!
Mix powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts according to the size of the stain. You will want to cover it completely. Let this mixture sit on the oil stain for an hour or longer, then add water to make a paste, scrub and then 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 Alhambra
Some concrete oil stains on a driveway are too tough for home remedies to remove. That’s when it is time to call a professional pressure washing company to thoroughly 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 difficult to repair 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 that look just as bad as the oil stains.
Calling Alhambra Pressure Washing is definitely the smart choice. Our technicians know the best methods to clean concrete without harming it, such as:
- The right PSI and GPM levels to use to remove stains
- Which nozzle tip will penetrate concrete without chipping it
- The optimal distance to spray the concrete from
- Products that can help lighten stains
Alhambra Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps to clean the concrete little by little – the most effective process. Most homeowners and other companies don’t have enough patience to do it correctly. They want immediate results.
A professional pressure washing company in Alhambra can also provide protective sealing services for your driveway so oil stains are less likely to happen again.