How to Remove Oil Stains on Driveways

oil stain on driveway

Oil stains on driveways look bad, and age your home exterior, even if the spots are fairly new. Try to avoid oil spots on your driveway and in your garage when possible, and try to get rid of those stains quickly, before they set in.

If the stain has been there for a while, like from before purchasing the home, you may need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Bethesda that can get rid of the most set-in stains on concrete.

Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?

Mostly, oil from cars is the cause for oil-stained concrete driveways. This could be oil, gas or transmission fluids – or a combination of engine fluids. Some of the most 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 auto mechanic

But, there are many other things that can leave an ugly oil stain on 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 simple first step for new oil spots where there is a lot of oil that needs to be dried up.

Sprinkle the cat litter over the oil, 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. Scoop it up or sweep it off the next day and repeat as necessary.

Get rid of used litter so pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick.

Then you can follow up with one of the following do-it-yourself cleaning tips.

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, be assured, that is not true. But, Coca-Cola does have strong cleaning properties when it comes to greasy stains, partly because of its carbonated bubbles, but mostly because of the phosphoric acid in the soda.

Pour a generous amount of Coca-Cola on the oil stain, then cover it with dishwashing soap (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 a common 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 let it sit for a little bit, anywhere 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 that famous blue dishwashing soap and some water and scrub until there is 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 Coca-Cola method, you might need to repeat the process.

LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS

Most homeowners already use this to eliminate tough stains on clothes. It’s also a great product 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 mixture sit on the oil stain for an hour or more, then add some water to create a paste, scrub and rinse.

This is more of a gentle cleaning process, so it might be necessary to repeat the process two or three times. But there is a good chance it will work!

DRIVEWAY CLEANING IN Bethesda

Some oil stains on a driveway are 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 yourself to save a few dollars. You can cause major damage that is extremely complicated to fix if you don’t know how to properly pressure wash concrete. The high pressure water stream can break and loosen concrete, and it can leave streaks that look almost as bad as the oil stains.

Hiring Bethesda Pressure Washing is definitely the best choice. Our technicians know the best ways to clean concrete without destroying it, such as:

  • The right PSI and GPM settings to use to remove stains
  • Which nozzle tip will penetrate concrete without chipping it
  • The optimal distance to spray the concrete from
  • Solutions that can help lighten stains

Bethesda Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps it takes to clean the concrete– the most effective process. Most homeowners don’t have enough patience to do it right. They want immediate results.

A professional pressure washing company can also provide protective sealing services for driveway so oil stains are less likely to occur.