How to remove oil stains on a concrete floor

Written by april dowling
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How to remove oil stains on a concrete floor
Oil stains make concrete floors appear neglected and dingy. ( Images)

Concrete's simple maintenance and durability make it a common flooring material for basements and garages. Although concrete is dense, it can acquire minor surface blemishes from oil spills. Oil permeates unsealed concrete floors and mars them with dark, unsightly stains. Quickly clean oil-stained concrete since oil becomes increasingly harder to remove the longer it remains on porous surfaces. Neglected oil spills can eventually result in permanent stains on concrete floors. Basic cleaning supplies can remove oil stains on a concrete floor.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Clay-based cat litter
  • Paper bag
  • Broom
  • 1 tsp liquid dish detergent
  • Synthetic bristle brush
  • Paper towels

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  1. 1

    Sprinkle clay based cat litter liberally over the affected portion of concrete. Leave the cat litter on the floor for an hour to absorb the oil from the concrete.

  2. 2

    Sweep the cat litter into a paper bag using a broom.

  3. 3

    Pour 1 tsp of liquid dish detergent onto the remaining oil stain. Wet the stain and surrounding concrete with warm water.

  4. 4

    Scrub the concrete with a synthetic bristle brush to emulsify the remaining traces of oil. Completely remove the stain from the concrete.

  5. 5

    Rinse the concrete surface and brush with fresh warm water.

  6. 6

    Blot the wet concrete with paper towels until completely dry.

  7. 7

    Contact a nearby hazardous waste company for directions on how to dispose of the paper bag containing oil-soaked cat litter.

Tips and warnings

  • Substitute baking soda or cornstarch for the cat litter.
  • Substitute liquid washing powder for the liquid dish detergent.
  • Remove stubborn oil stains with a microbial cleaner. Follow the product manufacturer's directions.
  • Wire brushes can damage concrete floors.

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