How to Remove Oil Stains on Driveways

oil stain on driveway

Oil stains on driveways look terrible, and age your home exterior, even if the oil stains are still relatively new. Avoid oil stains on your home’s driveway, sidewalks and in your garage when possible, and try to remove those stains right away, before they set in.

If the oil stain has been there for a long time, like from before you purchased the home, you might need the help of a local driveway cleaning service in Virginia Beach that can remove even the most set-in oil stains.

Where Do Concrete Oil Stains Come From?

Mainly, oil from automobiles is the reason for oil-stained concrete. This might be oil, gas or transmission fluids – or a combination. Some of the typical ways 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 mechanic

But, there are several other things that can create an unsightly oil stain on 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 simple first step for fresh oil stains where there is a lot of oil that needs to be dried up.

Sprinkle cat litter over the oil, getting it down into the stain by crushing it with your feet. It’s best to leave the litter on the oil stain for 24 hours so it will absorb as much as possible. Scrape it up or sweep it off of the driveway the following day and repeat as necessary.

Throw away used litter so pets and nearby wildlife don’t eat it and get sick from it.

Then you can proceed 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, rest assured, that is not true. But, Coca-Cola does have powerful cleaning properties when it comes to oily stains, in part due to its carbonated bubbles, but mostly 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 with a stiff brush, using circular motions throughout.

Rinse and repeat if needed.

BAKING SODA FOR OIL STAINS

Baking soda is a common home cleaning remedy ingredient.

To remove an oil stain on a driveway, you’ll first want 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 some of the oil and allow the baking soda to penetrate the porous concrete.

Then, add that famous blue dishwashing soap and water and scrub until there is a thick paste. Again, let this sit for optimal penetration, or continue to scrub in a circular motion, then rinse.

Just like the Coca-Cola method, you might have to repeat the process.

LAUNDRY DETERGENT FOR OIL STAINS

Many homeowners already use this to clean off dirty stains on clothes. It’s also 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 entirely. Let this dry mixture stay on the oil stain for an hour or longer, then add water to make a paste, scrub and rinse.

This is more of a gentle cleaning method, 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 Virginia Beach

Some oil stains on a driveway are just too difficult for DIY home remedies to remove. That’s when it is 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 few dollars. You can cause major damage that is complicated to fix 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 that look just as bad as the oil stains.

Hiring Virginia Beach Pressure Washing is definitely the safe choice. We know the best methods to clean concrete without destroying it, such as:

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

Virginia Beach Pressure Washing also follows all of the steps it takes to clean the concrete little by little – 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 Virginia Beach can also provide protective sealing services for driveway so oil stains are less likely to happen again.