Best Way to Remove an Oil Stain from Your Deck

  • stain deck
  • Transcript

    LESLIE: Mark in Maryland, you’ve got The Money Pit. What can we do for you today about that oil stain on deck?

    MARK: Well, a question I have is I spilled some cooking oil on a Trex deck.

    TOM: OK.

    MARK: In other words, the deck has Trex on it.

    TOM: Right.

    MARK: And I spilled this oil on it. And I’m just wondering if there’s any way to get the oil out of it or what can I do about it?

    TOM: Well, the first question is: how did dinner come out?

    MARK: Oh, dinner. Dinner was fine.

    TOM: Right. Well, listen, the issue with composite decking, some of it, including Trex, can be absorbent. So it soaks in.

    MARK: Right.

    TOM: Now, I – was this decking ever stained or sealed? Because sometimes, you can do that to composite, as well. Or is it the original?

    MARK: No, I did not.

    TOM: OK. So, you’ve got two options. First of all, to try to get as much of that oil stain on deck out as you can, what I would do is I would mix up a trisodium-phosphate paste. You get some TSP – trisodium phosphate. You’ll find it in a paint aisle of hardware stores and home centers. It’s a really good cleanser. So, you can mix it up and you could apply it to that area, let it sit a little bit, scrub the oil stain on deck a bit and then rinse it off and see if that starts to draw it out.

    MARK: OK.

    TOM: Now, if not, it’s kind of there and appears to be permanent. The other thing that you could do is you could remove that deck board and potentially turn it upside down and have a clean side on the other side of it. We suggest that often when folks have issues with deck boards that are cracked and they’re wood. But you could do it with composite. Depends, of course, on how that composite was put down. If it was put down with screws, super easy to remove it, flip it and put it back down again and you’ll have a clean side on the back, especially if it’s Trex. Because any Trex has two good sides.

    MARK: Right.

    TOM: Some composite boards, they have an underside that’s not designed to be to the weather. But with a Trex board, you should be able to do that.

    MARK: OK. The other solution I had was just pour oil all over it.

    TOM: You could do that, too. That’s one way to do it.

    LESLIE: Just be making a lot of fried potatoes.

    MARK: Yeah.

    TOM: And that deck would get awfully slippery, as well. Well, I’m glad you’re looking at it with some good humor. Thanks so much for giving us a call. We’re glad we were able to help you out.

    MARK: Thank you very much.

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