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How to Remove an Oil Stain from Concrete

  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Now we’ve got Richard in Texas on the line, who is possibly pretty mad at his son about this question he’s about to ask. What happened, Richard?

    RICHARD: My son changed his oil on his car and made a mess underneath of it and didn’t ever tell me about it. And unfortunately, he parked his car over it, for the most part. And now that his car’s gone, the oil stain is still there and I can’t seem to find any solution to getting it out. It was a new concrete and we put a sealer down and it didn’t – apparently, it didn’t work.

    TOM: From what you’re telling us here, you’ve done a lot. You’ve pressure-washed it, you put a degreaser, you used muriatic acid, you used kitty litter. It may be so into that concrete now that you’re not going to draw it out.

    The only thing that we can suggest that sometimes works is TSP – trisodium phosphate. And you buy this at a paint store and you mix it up like a paste and then you trowel it on over that stain and let it sit for a while. And that might, might pull some of it up.

    LESLIE: Get some of it up.

    TOM: But unfortunately, you’ve got this to the point now where it’s so embedded in there that I don’t think you’re going to be able to totally bring it back to the way it was. So you may want to think about using a concrete stain and restaining the whole surface or even an epoxy paint. They have epoxy paints that go on driveways today that are very durable, that can give you some protection against this ever happening again.

    RICHARD: Right. Well, I have some of that in my garage floor, where you roll it on and you put the little glitter over the top of it?

    LESLIE: Exactly.

    TOM: Yeah.

    RICHARD: And that seemed to work pretty good in there. Is there anything that I have to specifically pretreat that concrete with so that it will stick and not come up?

    LESLIE: Generally, the kits, when you purchase them, they’re sold in sort of stages and steps. And one of the first steps is an etching process, which will do the cleaning and prepping of the surface. But you definitely want to make sure that you clean the surface. Make sure that you get whatever dirt and dust or – just sitting on top of it off of it.

    And if you do use some water to give it a good cleaning, let it dry out very well before you apply anything. And then check your forecast, because you want to make sure that this has proper curing time and that there’s no chance of rain.

    TOM: Exactly.

    RICHARD: Awesome, awesome. Well, thank you very much.

    TOM: Alright, Richard. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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