Oil stains?

While this isn’t a car question per se. I was wondering if anyone has any tricks to removing years old oil stains from a concrete driveway?

This is one of those questions just made for internet videos. Put ( remove oil stain from concrete ) in your search engine . You will find lots of videos and you can decide which one fits you level of effort and budget .

I have had luck with powered detergent, I moisten the stain, put a paste of detergent/water on it and let it sit.


Never had a years old stain before, but when I get some new oil stains I get good luck just by putting a layer of sand on top and letting it sit a couple of weeks. Repeat if necessary. General purpose cat litter is said to be good for this too. I think that’s made of a clay product. Best of luck.


Clay based unscented kitty litter or oil dry. Looks the same, works the same. Cover stained area. Wait until oil is absorbed. Remove saturated oil dry and sprinkle fresh oil dry on stained area. Using a 4" long 2X4, scrub oil dry into floor until clean.

Of course the downside, if the old stain comes out then you have nearly white concrete surrounded by weathered grey concrete…

I use an oil stain asphalt cleaner on mine.You brush the cleaner over the stain,wait a few minutes then hose it off with water.

My technique is to place kitty litter (the cheap old fashioned kind, not the type that clumps) on the stains and grind it into the stain by doing the twist while standing on the litter until it grinds into a fine powder.

Of course I do this when the stain first appears. If I was working on an older stain, I’d also use some degreaser, scrub it with a deck brush, and if necessary, use a pressure washer on it, which basically takes off a layer of concrete.

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Just tell people that the stains are all that’s left of your XK-E.

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Actually what works pretty well on “fresh” oil on concrete is plain ole cement. Not Sakrete but type I or IA stuff you use to mix concrete with stones and sand. It is super absorbent. Now the problem with old stains is that it has soaked into the concrete, and how ya gonna get that out? Maybe a concrete cleaner and a pressure washer would help clean the surface up a little but I just don’t think you’ll get rid of it.

Now onto the garage floor. I’ve been thinking for a long time about doing something with my garage floor. Problem is I sealed it years ago and with oil, paint and whatever on the floor, I just am not convinced that epoxy stuff would last-plus pretty expensive. I’ve looked at the rubber rolls but I seem to be zeroing in on the PVC tiles as the best long term solution. No adhesive needed, about 1/8" thick, multi colors available, and bound to lay down flat. Plus I don’t think it would move around and a floor jack wouldn’t seem be a problem. Plus plus, you can replace just a single tile if you ruin one. Still about $3 a square foot. Probably on the longer term list though.

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Diatomaceous earth, bought most cheaply at a tack shop. I bought 10 pounds for $15, a lifetime supply for me. It’s even edible.

Yes, in terms of it’s consumption. I have read where it’s used to absorb toxins from your body.

True, but that is better than an oil stained driveway.

Have to agree with Bing. I don’t think anything’s pulling up an old oil stain once it’s soaked in. Maybe muriatic acid…

I’ll admit, I haven’t actually tried oil dry, etc on the old stain my wife’s 99 Camry left in the garage. But having used it elsewhere, it seems to soak up a puddle well and leave the oil stain.

If you scrub it in with a 2X4 you might be surprised at the results.

Would you please explain how that works? I’ve never seen anyone scrub concrete with a piece of wood. Are you suggesting the OP use sawdust?

I use oil dry to soak up the oil. After a couple hours or so the oil dry is saturated. I remove saturated oil dry away from the affected area. Then I spread with fresh oil dry. With a flat 2X4 about 4 - 6 inches long, I scrub the fresh oil dry into the stain. The oil dry is being crushed into a powder and draws oil from deeper into the concrete. I can take out some pretty old stains doing this.

Go to youtube and search on how to resurface a concrete floor. Or how to apply an epoxy coating. There are several videos that will show you how to clean the concrete floor.

I might give it a shot. It may depend on your definition of “old”. Like if the stain has been there a year and is soaked in to the concrete, I don’t see how anything would wick it out with gravity working against you. But I’ve never tried it, so that’s cool if it works.

I think he’s basically using the 2x4 like you said you use your foot - to crush it up and grind it in. He’s evolved to using a tool where you have not. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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