If you are a homeowner with your own car and garage, chances are you’ve had car oil spilled on your garage floor at one point or another. And oh boy, what terrible frustration must have that been. Oil spills are, for one, very difficult to remove when they’ve dried up and they smell most of the time. It must have happened during an oil leak in your car or an accidental spill while you were trying to change oil. If you think it can’t get any worse than that, think again. That’s because oil leaks and spills do not just come from vehicles but also through other instruments that are commonly used outside the house like your lawn mower or your snow blower.
There are many reasons why a splat of oil or gasoline would end up inside or outside your garage door. Luckily for you, we can offer you a few helpful tips as to how to remove this seemingly irremovable problem.
Oil leaves a dark blot on concrete and can be seen from a mile away. Sure, that was an exaggeration, but it sure does feel that way. So firstly, you’d want to determine if the stain or the fluid on the ground is wet or dry. If the oil is still wet or moist, it’s best if you cover it up with cornstarch, baking soda, cornmeal or even cat litter. Many of these should be found in your local grocery if you don’t have it in your kitchen already. These items will help absorb the extra moisture in the stain. Once the affected area has been dried out, make a DIY cleaning paste using a mixture of baking soda and a little bit of water. Make sure to not put too much or too little water as we’d want to get that paste-like consistency. Then use that on the affected spot and by wetting the stain with water, scrub that part with your make-shift paste and a stiff brush. Once that’s done, rinse it all up using water from your hose and leave it to dry. Another method you can try is using spray lubricant. That should work well on concrete. Alternatively, you can use an engine degreaser and then cover your problem area with a fair amount of kitty litter, leave it for a few minutes before swiping it up.
One particular fluid that’s been another common problem is the transmission fluid. It leaves a stain that that causes an unsightly red spot on the affected area. This usually happens on lighter colored concrete. Though darker colored concrete sometimes cannot be spared from its wrath. No need to fret, however, since there’s always a solution to these kinds of annoying issues. One thing you can do is to spray that stained area with an oven cleaner and then leave it to do its thing for another ten minutes. While waiting you may look for a stiff brush and pop up that overhead garage door and look for your hose. After letting it sit for ten minutes, brush the problem area with your stiff brush then clean everything off using water from the hose. Use the highest setting to create the most water pressure. If your hose can’t adjust its pressure, partially cover the nozzle using your thumb then fire (or water?) away. This is a rather time-consuming process but keep in mind that if it doesn’t work the first time around, repeat the process from step one (covering it with kitty litter) until it’s all washed away.
If oil stains aren’t bad enough, another problem that goes along with oil stains is, of course, gasoline stain. Gas stains not only leave an unimpressionable look on the outside of your house, they can smell real awful too. Not good if you have little children or pregnant women around the house. You’d want to eliminate this odor as soon as possible. So for that you’d need a pair of protective gloves and goggles then, if the spill is new, use the our secret magic ingredient, the cat litter or your good old baking soda or any other commercial absorbent. Leave it for a few minutes then sweep it all off into a sturdy non-flammable container with a tight sealing, for this we prefer to use a used coffee can with a lid. Set is aside somewhere safe then ask your local fire department how to dispose of wastes like these. For the cleaning part, scrub the problem area with a mixture of water and regular dishwasher liquid or paste. But if that doesn’t work, we suggest you use trisodium phosphate from your local hardware and ask the staff how to handle this chemical properly. Mix it with warm water and scrub that until the stain disappears. Make sure to scrub thoroughly so the stain goes away sooner.
So that should be it, a few simple things you can do if you have an accidental oil spill around the outside of the house using materials that can be found mostly inside your home. Happy cleaning!