How to Get Oil Out of Bricks

Written by april dowling | 13/05/2017
How to Get Oil Out of Bricks
Oil stains blemish a brick patio's appearance. (Hemera Technologies/ Images)

Favoured for its authentic appeal and irrefutable durability, brick remains a popular building and landscaping material. Patio, driveway and walkway surfaces are commonly made of brick. Although low-maintenance, brick surfaces are vulnerable to oil stains from vehicles, lawnmowers and gas grills. Unsealed bricks are especially susceptible to oil penetration, since they are porous. It's essential to remove oil from brick surfaces promptly before it sets. Quickly get oil out of bricks using common household supplies.

Absorb the oil from the brick surface using cat litter. Thoroughly cover the oil-stained bricks with an even layer of cat litter. Leave the cat litter on the bricks for 24 hours to thoroughly absorb the oil.

Sweep the cat litter residue off the bricks using a broom.

Inspect the brick surface for oil. If traces of oil remain, pour liquid dish detergent liberally onto the stubborn oil. Dish detergent is a degreaser that emulsifies oil.

Wet the soapy bricks with water to generate soapsuds. Wet the surrounding bricks to prevent the oil from spreading and staining them.

Scrub the soapy bricks with a stiff, non-metal brush. Continue scrubbing the bricks until no oil remains.

Rinse the bricks thoroughly using clean water. Immediately blot up the oily detergent runoff with paper towels before it damages nearby vegetation.


Substitute hydrated lime or sawdust for the cat litter.


Wire brushes may leave scars on bricks.

Tips and warnings

  • Substitute hydrated lime or sawdust for the cat litter.
  • Wire brushes may leave scars on bricks.

Things you need

  • Cat litter
  • Broom
  • Liquid dish detergent
  • Garden hose
  • Stiff, non-metal brush
  • Paper towels

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