Oil stains on driveways look terrible, and tarnish your home exterior, even if the spots are still relatively new. Avoid oil spots on your driveway and in your garage whenever possible, and attempt to get rid of those stains right away, before they really set in.
If the stain has been there for a long time, like from before purchasing the house, you might need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Downey that can get rid of the most set-in stains.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mostly, oil from vehicles is the cause for stains on concrete driveways. This could be oil, gas or transmission fluids – or a combination of engine fluids. Some of the typical ways concrete gets stained are from:
- Servicing your own car
- Filling up the lawn mower
- A leak that should be checked out by a mechanic
But, of course, there are many other things that can create an unsightly oil spot on concrete. So let’s look at some of the best DIY methods 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 needs to be dried up.
Sprinkle cat litter all 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 for 24 hours so it absorbs as much as possible. Scrape it up or sweep it off the following day and repeat as necessary.
Get rid of used litter so pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick from it.
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 Coca-Cola to clean up the roads, but, rest assured, that is a myth. That said, Coca-Cola does have powerful cleaning properties when it comes to greasy stains, in part due to its carbonated bubbles, but mainly because of the phosphoric acid in the soda.
Pour a good amount of Coca-Cola 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 needed.
BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS
Baking soda is another common home cleaning remedy ingredient.
To get rid of an oil stain on a driveway, you’ll first want to coat the stain with baking soda and let it sit for a little bit, anywhere from 20 minutes to a few hours. This should absorb a lot of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous concrete.
Next, add blue dishwashing detergent and some water and scrub hard 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 Coca-Cola method, you might have to repeat the process one or two times.
LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS
Most homeowners already use this to clean off dirty stains on clothing. It’s actually a great product for removing tough oil stains from concrete as well!
Combine powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts based on the size of the stain. You will want to cover it entirely. Let this dry mixture sit on the oil stain for an hour or more, then add some water to create a paste, scrub and then 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 possibility it will work!
DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Downey
Some oil stains on a driveway are just too difficult for DIY home remedies to remove. That’s when it may be time to call a professional pressure washing company to thoroughly clean your concrete surfaces.
We don’t recommend pressure washing your driveway on your own to save a few dollars. You can cause major damage that is extremely difficult to fix if you don’t know what you’re doing. The high pressure water stream can break and loosen concrete, and it can create streaks that look almost as bad as the oil stains.
Hiring Downey Pressure Washing is definitely the smart choice. We know the best methods to clean concrete without harming it, including:
- The right PSI and GPM levels to use
- Which nozzle will penetrate concrete without chipping it
- The best distance to spray the concrete from
- Solutions that can help lighten stains
Downey Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps it takes to clean the concrete– the most effective method. Most homeowners don’t have the patience to do it right. They want fast results.
A professional pressure washing company in Downey can also provide protective sealing services for driveway so oil stains are less likely to happen again.