Customers have asked: How do you remove stains from your driveway or garage floor? You may not have noticed that your car, lawn mower, or snow blower had a fluid leak until you see an unsightly stain on floor. Fluids such as oil, transmission fluid, gasoline, and paint may require different cleaning techniques, due to their disparate chemical bonds. Rust can also its mark over time, so be sure to cover the area underneath your aging appliances to prevent rust stains.
Ultimately, hiring a professional cleaning service is your best bet to ensure the stain is removed completely, but here are a few tips to help you get rid of those stains if you haven’t already coated your floor to prevent these stains from occurring.
If the oil on your driveway or garage is still fresh, try covering the stain with cat litter, baking soda, or cornstarch to absorb moisture. Once the pavement is dry, mix up some baking soda and water and scrub the area with the paste. Then, rinse the pavement with a hose and let it air dry.
Do you have an oven cleaner handy? Spray the stain with the cleaner and let it sit for about 10 minutes. After that, use a stiff brush to scrub the spot, then rinse it with your hose at its highest pressure. If the stain is still there after the first try, repeat the process.
Much like with oil spills, you can first absorb the moisture with cat litter or baking soda. Next, scrub the stain with a mixture of dishwasher detergent and water and let it soak in for a few minutes before rinsing with a hose. If that doesn’t take care of the problem, you scrub the area with warm water and a trisodium phosphate mixture until the stain lightens.
You can use wood paint stripper chemicals to clear away paint spills from your garage floor. Make sure you’re in a well-ventilated area (open your garage door) if you’re using a methylene chloride–type stripper.
One effective way to remove rust from concrete is to dissolve the surface layer of concrete using a mild muriatic acid solution. When working with an acid solution, take precautions to protect any exposed areas of your skin and make sure you wear a face mask, as well, to prevent inhalation.
A word of advice: Patience is the key. Keep working at it, if you still see traces of the stain in contrast to surrounding areas of concrete. You might find putting a little elbow grease into the task will prove a rewarding experience. You could get some unexpected exercise this way, too!
If you want to prevent stains before they have the chance to occur, you can seal your garage or driveway with a paint or sealant. That way, when you do see an oil leak on your floor, you can wipe it up easily.
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