I want to clean a driveway that's in good shape but looks bad
because of the oil and rust stains on it. The stains are a
couple of years old and have really set in. Could anyone help
out with some good ideas of what to use to clean it?
I cleaned a badly stained driveway a couple of years ago with my
Power Washer and a special cleaner made especially for driveways
and it worked great. Unfortunately, I can't seem to find that
special cleaner anymore.
I've found one guy on the web that says to use muriatic acid, but
the driveway belongs to my uncle, and I wouldn't feel comfortable
using something that might permanently damage his driveway.
Any ideas?? Thanks!
You don't need the acid, it will not do a good job for your problem and
could make the problem worse next time. Stop at the home improvement store
and they will have several cleaners for concrete. Most work well for what
you have. Follow the instructions and follow up with the power wash using
it as a final rinse.
There are a "few guys on the web" that think muriatic is good for
cleaning anything and everything. It is great for etching concrete, but
pretty nasty as a "cleaner". It won't get through oily/paint film, so
it will eat around it. Diluted 10%, as label calls for, still gives a
strength that creates clouds of fumes and makes a bit of noise as it
reacts. With my limited experience, I would not use it as a cleaner.
It eats away concrete and exposes more aggregate, possible weakening the
surface as far as water freeze/thaw cycles go. The dark spots from
hamburger grease or careless work remain after the acid, making very
little difference in the appearance. Cat litter is another "remedy" but
leaves a residue that is at least temporary. Pressure washing can do
damage, like the acid, if blasted with too much pressure.
On Tue, 01 Jul 2003 07:14:37 -0700, Ramblinon
. Pressure washing can do
I never heard that pressure washing a concrete driveway can damage it,
unless it is already breaking up or spaulding. But the acid, even
when diluted, will react with carbonate compounds in the concrete.
Keeping muriatic acid around the garage, basement or whatever will
quickly corrode metal parts in the area, and disposing of it properly
and safely becomes a problem.
Not having access (without renting a pressure unit) I did what a swimming
pool tech told me once. I've used this process for over 12 years and it
Pre-treat the rust stains with CLR - realize you're going to use a complete
bottle or more so be prepared. Put one pound of pool shock (available at
local bldg supply, Wal Mart, etc.) in a 5 gallon bucket. Pour in one gallon
of boiling water and add the pool shock (strong chlorine). Add two gallons
of cheap laundry bleach. Stir with a scrub brush on a long handle. On a
hot summer day - (and being careful not to splash it on anything you don't
want bleached or skin burned) lightly brush it onto the concrete. Allow it
to dry - do not hose it off. By the end of a sun shiny day - you'll be
amazed at the results. All the black marks from rain and washoff will be
gone. I did my driveway and sidewalk that way and the neighbors actually
complained that theirs looked like hell because mine looked like it was
freshly poured. It's easy to do - involved very little labor, no scrubbing,
and the results are great. Use caution when breathing the fumes - (read
labels ,etc.) It's the same stuff they use when they close the pools on
Mondays to treat for algae, fungus, etc. The odor dissapates with 24 hours
and it doesn't destroy the integrity of the concrete. It kills the grass in
the expansion joints as well - so be sure not to splash it over on the lawn,
Jim Mc Namara
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.