Concrete driveways can really increase your home’s curb appeal. They are durable, functional, and very visually appealing. However, this porous surface is susceptible to staining. Whether you spill something or a car leaked in your driveway, that stain can become an eyesore. Trying to remove it can even seem impossible at times. Well, to help, there are a couple of tricks you can apply to your driveway to make the stain disappear. Let’s take a look!
Oil and Grease
First, you will need to identify the stain on your driveway or sidewalk. Oil or grease stain can penetrate deep and are best treated sooner than later. Get a degreaser and spray it onto your stain. You can use a bristled brush to really scrub your degreaser into the pavement. Allow the degreaser to sit for a little bit of time, and spray your driveway down with an even coat of water using a hose. Next, hook up your pressure washer and attach your concrete cleaning detergent. Use your pressure washer to evenly wash the driveway. Allow the detergent water to sit for a little bit but do not allow detergent to dry. Unhook your hose and spray down your driveway to remove the leftover detergent.
If you notice you have stained your driveway with paint, apply a paint thinner, and allow it to sit and break down the paint. You can use a damp cloth to scrub and remove excess paint. First, spray your driveway down with water. Hook up your pressure washer with your concrete cleaning detergent. Be careful not to use too strong of a tip because this can etch and damage your concrete. Next, spray the area back and forth until the stain is completely gone. Allow the detergent water to sit for a little bit but do not allow detergent to dry. Lastly, unhook your hose and spray down your driveway to remove any remaining detergent.
Rust, Leaf Stains, and Common Muck
These common stains are much easier and will not need as much prep work. Simply apply your concrete detergent to the stained areas, and wet down the driveway using your hose. After, hook up the pressure washer and spray back and forth with the spray wand. Allow the detergent water to sit for a little bit but do not allow detergent to dry. Lastly, unhook your hose and spray down your driveway to remove the detergent.
You may need to work in smaller sections so the detergent never dries since this could lead to streaking. If the stains remain, add detergent again directly to each stain and scrub with a brush. To prevent future stains, consider adding a sealer to your concrete driveway. For more household tips and tricks, make sure to subscribe.
Joe Hall says
I really like that you touched on how grease and oil can really penetrate deep into the concrete and stay there. My parents have an old driveway that is starting to look old and is falling apart. They need to get in touch with contractors so that they can find out how much a new driveway will cost.
Tyler Johnson says
That’s good to know that it’s possible to get a detergent that would let you get oil out of concrete. I am thinking about replacing my old asphalt driveway with a new concrete one, and I would want to make sure that I know how to get rid of any stains that my car may leave on it. I’ll have to gove that a try if I end up getting the new driveway installed.
John Concrete says
Really appreciate the explanation here on several common concrete staining problems. I especially see people forget that even things like leaves can create stains if left for too long. I had one neighbor never rake her leaves and it always got caught in a corner by her garage and created a monster stain on her driveway. It looked terrible and she eventually had to get a professional to come in and help.
Andrew Wilson says
Thank you so much for your great tips. I was really worried about my stained concrete driveway as it lost its original color. I had issues with grease and oil but did not know how to deal with it. Your article will certainly help me. Thanks again. Cheers!
Iowa City Concrete says
These are some wonderful points on how to remove those stains. We are a concrete company in Iowa City and do some of the things mentioned for our clients and we’re looking for if there’s more we should be doing. Thanks so much for sharing. It was a great read!
Your tips on removing paint from my driveway and walkway have helped. I had some painters last year that painted my house and they made a mess on my concrete and walkway. I was too afraid to use paint thinner thinking it would deteriorate my concrete color. Since I’ve read this article, I wanted to thank you for helping me restore my property back to its former glory!
You’re very welcome! Thanks for commenting!