Oil stains on driveways look awful, and age your home exterior, even if the oil spots are still relatively new. Avoid oil spots on your home’s driveway and in your garage if possible, and attempt to get rid of those stains fast, before they really set in.
If the oil 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 Baltimore that has the ability to get rid of even the most set-in oil stains.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mostly, oil from cars is the reason for stains on concrete. This could be oil, gas or transmission fluids – or a combination of engine fluids. Some of the common ways your concrete gets stained are from:
- Servicing your own car
- Filling up the gas in a lawn mower
- A leak that should be checked out by a mechanic
But, there are countless other things that can leave an ugly oil spot on your concrete. So let’s explore a few of the best DIY methods to remove those oil 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 a lot of oil that needs to be cleaned up.
Sprinkle cat litter all over the oil, really getting it down into the stain by crushing it with your feet. It’s a good idea to leave the litter on the oil stain overnight so it can absorb as much as possible. Scoop it up or sweep it off of the driveway the following day and repeat as necessary.
Throw away used litter so your pets and wildlife don’t eat it and get sick.
Next you can proceed with one of the following do-it-yourself cleaning processes.
COCA-COLA FOR OIL STAINS
You might have heard urban legends about accident clean-up crews using Coca-Cola to clean the roads, but, rest assured, that is not true. But, Coca-Cola does have powerful cleaning properties for oily stains, partly because of its carbonated bubbles, but mainly from the phosphoric acid in the soda.
Pour a generous amount of Coca-Cola on the oil stain, then cover it with dishwashing liquid (Blue Dawn is widely accepted as the most effective). Scrub with a stiff brush, using circular motions throughout.
Rinse and repeat if you have to.
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 need to coat the stain with baking soda and then let it sit for a little bit, anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours. This should absorb a lot of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous concrete.
Then, add blue dishwashing detergent and water and scrub until there is a thick paste. Again, you can let this sit for the best penetration, or you can continue to scrub in a circular pattern, then rinse.
Just like the Coca-Cola method, you might need to repeat the process.
LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS
Most homeowners already use this to eliminate dirty stains on clothing. It’s actually a great option for removing tough oil stains on concrete as well!
Combine powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts based on the size of the oil stain. You will want to cover it completely. Let this mixture sit on the oil stain for an hour or more, then add water to make a paste, scrub and then rinse.
This is a gentle cleaning method, so it may be necessary to repeat the process one or two times. But there is a possibility it will work!
DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Baltimore
Some oil stains on a driveway are just too difficult for home remedies. 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 on your own to save a a little money. You can cause major damage that is extremely complicated to repair if you don’t know how to properly pressure wash concrete. The high pressure water can break and loosen concrete, and it can leave streaks on a driveway that look just as bad as the oil stains.
Calling PRO Baltimore Power Wash is definitely the safe choice. Our technicians 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 optimal distance to spray the concrete from
- Products that can help lighten stains
PRO Baltimore Power Wash also follows all of the steps to clean the concrete little by little – 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 Baltimore can also offer protective sealing services for your driveway so oil stains are less likely to occur.