Garden Advice

How to Remove Oil Stains From Block Paving

Our informative post offers advice and help on how to get oil off the driveway or the patio quickly and effectively and restore your block paving area back to its glory all by yourself.

So, if you:

  • have stubborn oil marks all over your paved areas
  • wonder what’s the right way to remove oil stains from block paving
  • are looking for methods to extend the lifespan of your paving slabs and ensure little long-term maintenance

Then you are at the right place, so go on!

When it comes to building a driveway, walkway, patio, or any other similar area, block paving is an excellent choice. Pavers are incredibly easy to work with and can be arranged in a variety of shapes and designs. Block paving also makes a versatile and structurally strong surface, perfect to improve the aesthetic of both domestic and commercial outdoor spaces.

But, one of the downsides of covering an area with pavers is that they easily fall victim to stubborn stains. It’s no surprise that oil stains are the most common blemish found on paving slabs. Whether it’s cooking oil from a backyard barbecue, oil from a leaking car, or grease from vehicle repair, the marks are quite noticeable and ruin the elegant look of your driveway or patio.

With so much going into the decision of block paving style, shape, and colour, it’s also wise to invest effort and time in cleaning the pavers so you ensure their intended appearance and performance last as long as possible.

In most cases, removing oil stains from block paving is a fairly simple task if you just have the right approach and use proper cleaning tools and products. So, to learn how to treat your stained block paving areas, carry on with our detailed guide that provides the most effective methods of removing oil from the beloved driveway.

How to Remove Oil Stains from Driveway

Let’s go through the following step-by-step instructions on cleaning the oil spots that guarantee desired results. Following these steps prevents the stains from settling and ruining your driveway or patio.

Step 1

First things first, prevention comes before anything else. One of the best ways to fight oil stains is to just not let them occur. Always put down a drip tray or a piece of cardboard if your car starts leaking oil, or when about to have a barbecue to stop the stains from appearing in the first place. If you’re late and the stains are already there, the drip tray or cardboard will at least prevent them from growing and spreading.

Step 2

There are some additional things to do before applying chemicals to the mark to eliminate it efficiently. You first need to soak up any excess liquid oil on the surface of the stain. Using rags or paper towels should do the job. If there is still a significant amount of the liquid, spread sawdust or conventional cat litter over the oil spots. Gently push the dusty substances into the stains. Avoid using a wire brush while doing it, because it scratches the pavers and you might damage them. Leave the stains covered for approximately 20 minutes allowing the substances to soak up any excess spilt oil and relieve the following cleaning process. Once all the excess oil is absorbed, sweep the sawdust or the cat litter away.

Step 3

Next is cleaning the stained area of any dirt or debris to make sure that the cleaning detergents you’re applying afterwards get to the oil and are able to eliminate it. Use a bucket of cold water or a regular hose to wash all of the grime away. It’s important that you don’t rely on high-pressure washing methods such as using a high-pressure power hose or jet washer because this would result in pushing the oil deeper into the porous block paving, making it much harder to remove.

Step 4

It’s time to put on protective gloves and eyewear and proceed with applying the cleaning agents to the affected paved areas.

How to treat smaller oil stains?

Whether your cleaning detergent is liquid or powder, simply apply it liberally on the spot until you cover it completely. But what product to use? Well, have you heard about cleaning patio slabs with vinegar? That’s right, you can use a common household product, such as vinegar, baking soda, dish soap, and laundry detergent. Let the cleaning agent sit on the oily stain for about 15-30 minutes.

Another easy and cheap way to handle the tricky spots is to pour a fizzy drink such as standard cola on them. Leave the drink on the stain for a day before washing.

How to treat larger oil stains?

With large oily marks, it’s a good idea to use store-bought degreasing detergents. These cleaning agents have the ability to get all kinds of fluids off your concrete without compromising the block paving surface. They are strong fast-acting detergents that can remove any oil or grease. Remember to read the instructions and warning labels on the products, before using them. Usually, such cleaning agents are left on the spot for 1-3 minutes and are diluted in water to fight weaker stains.

For our eco-oriented readers, there is already a variety of environmentally safe detergents, such as microbial cleaners, that eliminate oil stains just as well, without leaving any toxic residues.

Step 5

While still with your chemical resistant gloves on, scrub the stain vigorously to create a lather that covers the marked paving slabs well. Again, avoid using a brush with wire bristles. Instead, get a steel or stiff bristle brush. Let the scrubbed area sit like this for 10-15 minutes. Then, use the hose or the bucket to wash away the cleaning agent with warm water. Once the block paving dries, inspect to see if the oil disappeared.

If the stain is still there, repeat the entire process. If it still remains visible, try creating a thick paste from powdered laundry detergent and ¼ cup of hot water to cover the oil blemish. Scrub again and leave overnight.

These 5 steps should hopefully remove oil stains from your block paving-covered driveway or patio.

Contact Professionals

In extreme cases, it’s best to consider hiring professional help. At Fantastic Services, we offer quality block paving pressure washing, performed by experienced technicians who use eco-friendly products and methods. 

After you easily book the service online, our cleaners arrive at your address in the arranged time equipped with all necessary gear. They make a thorough examination of the affected paved area to confirm the final price and to set a plan for action. And then, they are ready to get to work but before that, the specialists need you to provide easy access to electricity and running water. After setting the pressure washing machine, the technicians start the cleaning process. The pressure washing device releases a powerful stream of water that can remove all kinds of stubborn stains, including oil from your driveway or sidewalk. And pressure washing is safe for your block paving surfaces, as long as it’s done by professionals, like the Fantastic Services technicians. Our skilled cleaners are trained to clean driveways, patios, deckings, and more.

So, if you lack the time or skills, or the oil spills all over your driveway are too much to deal with, book us now for professionally done block paving cleaning.

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Get in touch with us to book a professional pressure washing service!

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  • Try to prevent oil stains from occurring in the first place.
  • Before you start cleaning the marks, always remove excess oil.
  • Clean all dust and dirt prior to applying detergents to make sure that they will clean the stains effectively.
  • Don’t forget to wear protective equipment!
  • Follow the suggested steps in the same order and there will be no memory of the nasty oil spots from your driveway.
  • Once you get rid of all oil spills, you will be able to enjoy your freshly cleaned lovely outdoor space.

So, what cleaning methods and products do you use for removing oil from block paving? Let us know below in the comments.

Image source: Shutterstock / PhotoRK

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