How To Remove Oil Stains From Driveways: DIY Or Call A Professional?
Exterior Cleaning

How to Remove Oil Stains From Driveways: DIY or Call a Professional?

By Angelina Zhuravleva  •  April 20  •  3 min
How to Remove Oil Stains From Driveways: DIY or Call a Professional?

Oil stains on driveways are more than unsightly; due to the porous nature of concrete and asphalt surfaces, they can become a persistent nuisance. The key to tackling these stubborn stains is quick action and the right approach, from commercial degreasers to employing absorbent materials for immediate blotting.

This comprehensive guide dives into practical strategies for cleaning fresh spills, addressing old, set-in stains, and preventing future occurrences. Whether you're dealing with concrete or asphalt, we've covered you with step-by-step instructions and professional advice.

Plus, learn when it's time to call in the experts from Directorii for those tough stains that defy your DIY efforts. Get ready to restore your driveway's appearance and protect it against future damage with our expert tips and solutions.

Why Oil Stains Are Tough to Remove From Driveways

Oil stains can be tough to remove from concrete and asphalt driveways. These porous surfaces absorb liquids and gasses, causing oil to seep into microscopic pores and crevices and bond with the material. When exposed to air and sunlight, the oil hardens and darkens, making removing it more challenging.

Prompt action using a commercial degreaser or blotting with an absorbent material is the best way to remove stains from driveways. Acting quickly before the oil has time to bond with - and fully alter - the pavement is essential.

How to Clean Fresh Oil Spills on Your Driveway

To clean up fresh oil spills on your driveway, act quickly and follow these steps:

  1. Absorb the Spill: Cover the entire spill with absorbent material. Scoop it up and dispose of it properly.
  2. Scrub the Stain: Scrub the area with a degreaser or dish soap and warm water. Rinse thoroughly.
  3. Repeat and Flush: Repeat the scrubbing and flushing steps for tough stains.
  4. Re-seal or Repave (Optional): Re-seal the pavement or apply a patching compound to deep stains.

Following these steps promptly after discovering the spill can remove oil stains from your driveway and prevent permanent damage.

How to Remove Old, Set-in Oil Stains From Concrete or Asphalt Driveways

How to remove oil stains from concrete driveways:

  1. Start with a heavy-duty degreaser designed for concrete.
  2. Scrub with an abrasive pad and rinse thoroughly.
  3. Make a poultice paste from absorbent materials and a solvent for tough stains.
  4. Apply, cover with plastic sheeting, and let sit for 48 to 72 hours.
  5. Scrub away any remaining residue.
  6. Use a pressure washer as a last resort.
  7. Apply a concrete sealer after cleaning to prevent future stains.

How to Prevent Future Oil Stains on Your Driveway

To prevent oil stains on your driveway, park cars in the garage or on the street. Use drip pans or absorbent pads when parking is unavoidable. Repair vehicle leaks promptly. Re-seal or repave your driveway regularly to protect the surface and prevent stains.

The Causes of Oil Stains on Driveways

Neglecting routine vehicle maintenance, accidental spills, routinely parking in the same spot, and extreme weather conditions can cause oil stains on driveways. Regular inspections, quick response to spills, and alternating parking spots can help prevent these stains. Addressing any leaks or drips as soon as they appear is the best way to avoid permanent damage. With proper care, vehicle owners can keep their driveways looking like new.

When to Call a Professional for Oil Stain Removal


When determining how to remove oil stains from driveways, DIY methods can work well for minor stains. For larger or stubborn stains, call professional cleaning services. They have the right equipment and chemicals to remove the stain without damaging the surface. Severe, penetrating, or toxic stains are best left to professionals. They have access to industrial-strength degreasers, emulsifiers, and high-pressure washers. Professionals understand how different driveway materials respond to chemicals and how to contain the stain. Trust professionals to remove the stain without causing further damage to your driveway.

An inexperienced DIY approach can often do more harm than good by damaging the driveway surface or creating holes and cracks. Professionals are trained to thoroughly clean stains without etching or eroding the pavement. They can also re-seal and re-paint the area once the stain has been removed to protect the surface and improve appearance.

What methods do professionals use to remove tough oil stains from driveways?

Oil stains on pavement can be removed through steam cleaning with a pressure washer, using chemical solvents, or abrasive blasting. In severe cases, pavement replacement may be necessary.

Directorii: The Best Contractors Near You to Remove Oil Stains from Your Driveway

If you have oil stains to remove from your driveway and you’re debating between DIY methods or hiring a professional, it’s helpful to consider your available time, budget, and confidence in your abilities. While doing it yourself might save you money, hiring a professional can provide peace of mind and guarantee great results. To ensure that you find a reputable and licensed contractor near you, we recommend using Directorii. Our platform features the best experts with 4.5+ star ratings, and they have been thoroughly vetted. Take action now by contacting Directorii for free quotes from licensed and pre-screened contractors in your area. 

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