Oil stains on driveways look terrible, and tarnish your home exterior, even if the stains are fairly new. Try to avoid oil stains on your driveway, sidewalks and in your garage when possible, and attempt to get rid of those stains right away, before they really set in.
If the stain has been there for a while, like from before you purchased the house, you may need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Minneapolis that has the ability to get rid of the most set-in stains.
Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?
Mostly, oil from vehicles is the reason for stains on concrete driveways. This could be oil, gasoline or transmission fluids – or a combination. Some of the most common ways your concrete gets stained are from:
- Servicing your own car
- Filling up the gas in a lawn mower
- A leak that needs to be checked out by a auto mechanic
But, of course, there are countless other things that can create an unsightly oil stain on your concrete. So let’s look at some of the best DIY tips to remove those stains!
DIY Oil Stain Removal Tips
CAT LITTER FOR OIL STAINS
Cat litter is a simple first step for new oil stains where there is a lot of oil that needs to be dried up.
Sprinkle the cat litter all over the oil, really getting it down into the stain by stomping on it with your feet. It’s a good idea to leave the litter on the stain for 24 hours so it will absorb as much as possible. Scoop it up or sweep it off the next day and repeat if necessary.
Get rid of used litter so your pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick.
Next 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 the roads, but, be assured, that is not true. That said, Coke does have powerful cleaning properties for greasy stains, in part due to its carbonated bubbles, but mainly because of the phosphoric acid in the soda.
Pour a generous amount of Coke 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 needed.
BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS
Baking soda is another popular home cleaning remedy product.
To get rid of an oil stain on a driveway, you’ll first want to coat the stain with the baking soda and then let it sit for a little bit, somewhere from 15 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 that famous blue dishwashing soap and some water and scrub 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 the Coke method, you might have to repeat the process.
LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS
Most homeowners already use this to eliminate bad stains on clothes. It’s also a great option for getting rid of tough oil stains from concrete too!
Mix powdered laundry detergent and borax in equal parts according to the size of the stain. You want to cover it entirely. Let this dry mixture stay on the oil stain for an hour or more, then add some water to create a paste, scrub and rinse.
This is a gentle cleaning process, so it might be necessary to repeat the process one or two times. But there is a good chance it will work!
DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Minneapolis
Some concrete oil stains on a driveway are too difficult for DIY home remedies to remove. That’s when it is 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 significant damage that is difficult to repair if you don’t know what you’re doing. The high pressure water can break and loosen concrete, and it can leave streaks on a driveway that look almost as bad as the oil stains.
Calling Minneapolis Pressure Washing is definitely the safe choice. We know the best methods to clean concrete without ruining it, including:
- The right PSI and GPM levels to use
- Which nozzle will penetrate concrete without damaging it
- The best distance to spray the concrete from
- Solutions that can help lighten stains
Minneapolis Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps to clean the concrete– the most effective process. Most homeowners and other companies don’t have enough patience to do it right. They want quick results.
A professional pressure washing company in Minneapolis can also offer protective sealing services for your driveway so oil stains are less likely to happen again.