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Thread: Suggestions for driveway oil spot remover

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    2,390

    Suggestions for driveway oil spot remover

    Had our refrigerator replaced last week. The delivery truck left a huge oil spot on our concrete driveway. Nasty black oil too. Looks like it had never been changed. Anyway, I tried to clean that mess up today. I figured Dawn would loosen the oil up so I put that on full strength, scrubbed it into the oil spot, gave it 4 or 5 minutes to work, then hit it with the pressure washer. That only got about half the stain.

    So, it looks like I need a better solvent/degreaser. Can anyone give a tried and true recommendation?

    Thanks for your help.
    Brian

    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger or more complicated...it takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." - E.F. Schumacher

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    6,009
    Brake cleaner.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    Northern Florida
    Posts
    418
    Kitty litter is good to get the bulk of it. Put it on and leave it for a while. It's what you would start with so you might already be past the point where it would help you.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Elmodel, Ga.
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    669
    I worked in a large diesel shop and we had that problem everyday. Best remedy that we found was to put mineral spirits on the oil spot, let it sit for a few minutes, then put oil dry on it. Let it sit for a day and it would pull all of the oil up. Worked everytime.
    SWE

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Northeast Ohio
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    519
    Might want to try Dawn brand dish detergent. My understanding is that brand is used to clean water fowl when there are oil spills. My wife uses it to remove grease spots in clothes before putting in washer. We also use another Dawn product, something like Dawn Dissolver, for really stubborn grease. Those two options would be my first attempts.

  6. #6
    Castrol Super Clean or it's Home Depot equivalent, Zep Industrial Purple. Also, pick up a bag of actual oil absorbent, works much better than kitty litter. Use the purple stuff full strength, scrub with a stiff scrub brush, and use some full-on rubber gloves. Rinse well afterward. Brush some absorbent over the spot if there's any leftover residue, it'll be gone in a day or two...
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKean, PA
    Posts
    13,727
    I once removed an oil spot from concrete using a spray can of Gunk engine cleaner. That was 30+ years ago so the formulation may have changed.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    N.E. Ohio
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    5,996
    Oil dry - mixed with some mineral spirits. Make a paste & let it sit 24 hours. Cover it with aa cardboard box so it doesn't evaporate too quick.
    Next day, scrub it with Gunk to emulsify the oil/mineral spirits and hose it off.
    My granddad always said, :As one door closes, another opens".
    Wonderful man, terrible cabinet maker...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Red Deer, Alberta
    Posts
    892
    Call the service company and tell them they have a cleanup in isle 4...
    Funny, I don't remember being absent minded...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lafayette, IN
    Posts
    4,415
    Back in my painting days, for a while, I drove a little, old Mazda pickup that leaked oil like a sieve. I eventually figured out that there was no sense in topping off the oil because it would just leak out in less than a week. It ran fine on 2 of 4 quarts. Anyway, I had this one customer who had a very long, concrete driveway that was absolutely pristine. There was no way I could park on the street and hump all my tools in. So I took a piece of cardboard with me and stuck it under the truck as soon as I got there. Much to my dismay, my truck managed to make a couple drops outside the cardboard. I thought I would just bring something the next day to clean the couple drips up. When I got there the next day, I could see that there was something else on the drips (at first, they just looked bigger than I remembered them, until I inspected more closely). I got to talking to the homeowner, and he said his dad had taught him the trick—just put liquid detergent on it and leave it alone. What I don’t remember is whether it was dish or laundry detergent. My wife, kids, and I visited some time later, and the oil spots were totally gone—no trace whatsoever.

    So, after I got rid of that pickup (had an accident that finished it off), I set to work on the huge spot on my own driveway. The detergent worked eventually, but it took a while. My driveway is much older and probably far more porous, and the spot was probably 3’ diameter. Now, when I change the oil in my vehicles, I invariably get some on the driveway, so I just put some kitty litter on it—the absorbent clay type—and mash it in with my foot. I leave it for a few days and then sweep it up. The faint stain that remains usually goes away with the next good rain.
    Jason

    "Don't get stuck on stupid." --Lt. Gen. Russel Honore


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    N.E, Ohio
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    2,948
    Plus 1 on Castrol Super Clean. It really works. Spray it on, a little scrub with a wet scrub brush and rinse.
    George

    Making sawdust regularly, occasionally a project is completed.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    N.E. Ohio
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    5,996
    ust put liquid detergent on it and leave it alone. What I don’t remember is whether it was dish or laundry detergent.
    Either / or. It doesn't really matter as long as it's a detergent.
    My granddad always said, :As one door closes, another opens".
    Wonderful man, terrible cabinet maker...

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Ames, IA
    Posts
    540
    Most won't like this approach, but dump some saw dust on the spot, then saturate it with gasoline. Take a stiff broom and work into the oil stain.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
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    6,404
    Sawdust, dust not chips.
    Bill D

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    11,176
    I also use brake cleaner. I buy it by the case and use it for many degreasing jobs.

    JKJ

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