How To Easily Remove Oil Stains From Your Garage or Driveway

Did you pull out of your garage this morning only to discover an unsightly oil spot staining the concrete floor of your garage? Or did you notice a big oil stain as you backed out of your friend’s driveway after a party? 

Noticing an oil spot or stain from under your car can be frustrating for a  number of reasons. First, because there is probably something you must fix in your car, but mostly because now you have to deal with that big oil stain staring at you. So what do you do to get rid of it?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this article, we are going to talk about the products and the steps you need to take to remove that oil stain properly from your driveway or garage. 

We will explore best practices, recommendations, and alternative methods to help you remove that pesky oil stain with items you probably already have in your home. 

What You Need:

  • Kitty Litter (Or Cat Litter in the UK)
  • Water
  • Dishwashing Soap
  • Baking Soda
  • A Towel or Rag
  • Scrub Brush

How To Remove The Oil Stain:

  1. Blot the oil with a rag to absorb as much of it as possible.
  2. Cover the entire stained area with a thick layer of kitty litter to absorb the residue.
  3. Scoop up the kitty litter and dispose of it once it has soaked everything in.
  4. Make a paste with baking soda and water and scrub into the stained area. 
  5. Rinse the paste with fresh water until the area is clear and let it air dry.
  6. Pour dishwashing soap on the oil stain and scrub well in circular motions.
  7. Rinse the dishwashing soap with fresh water until the area is clear.
  8. Repeat as many times as needed until the stain is gone. 

Why Does This Process Remove Oil Stains?

There are a few important ingredients to this oil stain removing recipe that make it effective. It’s the combination of absorbing the oil, breaking down the oil, and cleaning the oil away that makes all the difference. 

You may be tempted to just wipe up the stain and hit the spot with a degreasing spray and move on. That method will work just fine to take up the worst of the stain. It may not remove the stain entirely, but it will probably make it look much better. 

However, if you really want to make sure the oil stain on your driveway or garage is completely gone it’s important to follow this method step by step.  

Do I Really Need To Use Kitty Litter To Remove The Oil?

Yes. Even if you don’t have a cat at home, we highly recommend running out to the store and grabbing some kitty litter for this project. It is an essential component of the process and should not be skipped. 

As you likely know, kitty litter is designed to be absorbent. In the same way that it works in your cat’s litter box, it will work with the oil on the stain in your driveway or garage. This will prep the stain for the additional steps in the process to work well. 

What Other Things Can I Do To Remove Oil Stains?

While the process listed above is certainly one of the best ways to fully remove an oil stain and requires items that you most likely already have in your home, there are some other methods to try as well if you wish. 

Some of these other oil stain removing methods use some surprising ingredients but still work well for many people, so they are worth trying.

  • Coca-Cola – Yes, you read that right! Pouring a can of Coca-Cola on an oil stain and leaving it to sit for several hours or overnight will likely remove or fade the stain. 
  • WD-40 – This popular product boasts 2,000 uses on their website, and cleaning oil stains is one of the most common uses. Time to bust out that can of WD-40 and give it a try!
  • Oven Cleaner – This product is designed to break down the grease in your dirty oven, so it’s no surprise that it works on oil stains outside as well. Pour it on, scrub, and rinse!

What Else Is Important To Remember When Removing Oil Stains?

As with any cleaning project, be mindful of what cleaning products you are using and the recommendations around mixing them to ensure safety. 

If the stain is inside your garage, make sure to keep the garage door open to ventilate any unwelcome fumes. 

Wear gloves to protect your hands from harsh cleaning agents if you wish.

Consider wearing eye protection so that you don’t get any chemicals or oil in or around your eyes.

Use rags and brushes that are either one-time use or designated for automotive/garage use only.

Make sure to fully rinse away all oil and cleaning products from the garage floor or driveway once you are done cleaning.