As a homeowner, you work hard to maximize your home’s curb appeal. But when it comes to your driveway and sidewalks, residual motor oil, gasoline and other fluids from your vehicles can leave unsightly spots and reduce your home’s appeal when you’re ready to sell. But don’t worry. A leading insurance company has identified the culprits and rounded up some ways to help remove oil stains from concrete and get your driveway, sidewalks and garage floor cleaner than they have ever been before. There are plenty of types of fluid that can leave stains on concrete, and most of them are pretty hard to avoid. But knowing the type of stain that’s on your driveway can help you know how and when it should be removed. Here’s a list of the more common fluids that leave stains
When there’s a gasoline stain on your driveway, it’s probably not from your primary vehicle. It could be a secondary car that’s always parked in the driveway or from a visitor’s car. If it’s your car, you should get the leak fixed immediately. If it’s your lawn mower, use a funnel when you fill it up next time.
Engine oil leaks from any sort of vehicle are the most common driveway stains and should be cleaned right away. While they’re able to be removed from concrete fairly easily, they can do some serious damage when tracked into your home and onto floors and carpets. Other stains can include transmission and clutch fluid, rock salt and ice melt products, crayons, differential fluid, brake fluid and more. Following are some methods to remove a variety of stains. There are many simple ways to remove concrete stains from your driveway, so you don’t need to buy environmentally harmful, dangerous or expensive chemicals to get the job done.
- Pour cat litter on the stain: For a newly formed oil stain, try using kitty litter first. Soak up the excess oil with a cloth and follow these steps; completely cover the stain with kitty litter; let the litter sit for thirty minutes if the stain is small or overnight if large; sweep up the kitty letter from the stain and scrub clean with a bristle brush and detergent, such as Dawn; rinse with water from a power sprayer and repeat if necessary.
- Treat concrete stain with baking soda: If you don’t have kitty litter, baking soda is your next best bet. Like kitty litter, it’s quite absorbent and does a great job of lifting any moisture after being applied. Remove the stain using these simple steps: Sprinkle a thick layer of baking soda over the oil stain in your driveway; let it soak in for thirty minutes; clean the stain by scrubbing it with a bristle brush; wash away the baking soda with clean water and repeat if necessary.
- Laundry detergent or dish washing liquid: If baking soda doesn’t work, laundry or dish soap are both effective at removing driveway oil stains; Pour a detergent, such as Dawn, over the oil stain; scrub it with a strong-bristled brush; let the stain sit for an hour; wash away the stain with Hot water and repeat as necessary.
- WE-40: In addition to fixing that annoying squeaky door hinge, prevent your car locks from freezing, or to remove rusty bolts and screws, WD-40 is a great moisture remover. Apply it over the entire stain; scrub the stain with a thick bristled brush (an old broom that you can discard also works fairly well); rinse the area with water and soak what remains with cat litter or baking soda.