Bob Vila Radio: Homemade Remedies for Driveway Oil Spots

The next time your car drips oil onto your otherwise pristine asphalt driveway, try one of these reportedly effective cleaning methods—unlikely though they may sound.

Oil spots on asphalt driveways certainly don’t add to a home’s curb appeal. Ask ten people what remedies they recommend for removing oil stains from concrete, and you’re likely to get ten different answers.

How to Remove Oil Stains from Concrete

Photo: shutterstock.com

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Listen to BOB VILA ON CLEANING ASPHALT STAINS or read the text below:

Here are some of the most popular ways to remove oil stains from concrete:

• Granulated cat litter gets a lot of thumbs up. It’s especially effective if you cover the stain while it’s still fresh.

• Powdered laundry detergent mixed into a paste seems to work well if you spread it over the stain, let it sit for awhile, then scrub with a broom and rinse.

• Grease-cutting dish detergents coupled with a stiff broom are another strategy.

• Other people swear by full-strength bleach.

• Still others douse the stain with soda.

Lots of companies tout commercial asphalt cleaning products, but reviews are mixed. In many cases, they don’t seem to perform any better than the household remedies. And forget about using a driveway sealer to hide oil spots; the oil will just eat its way back to the surface.

Bob Vila Radio is a newly launched daily radio spot carried on more than 60 stations around the country (and growing). You can get your daily dose here, by listening to—or reading—Bob’s 60-second home improvement radio tip of the day.