Beautiful, Strong and Compelling Concrete: Ideas, Tips and More

How To Clean Your Ashphalt Driveway

A smart asphalt driveway certainly adds kerb appeal to your home, but stains can spoil the look.  Spills can occur while oil top-ups are being carried out and autumn leaves are accumulating and decaying, leaving dark "shadows" in their wake.  Fortunately, you can shift the majority of stains yourself using items commonly found in the home.  Any particularly stubborn or widespread marks should be addressed by your local concrete contractor such as Melbourne Asphalt Contractors.

Here's how to remove stains from your asphalt driveway.

Before you begin

The first thing to do, regardless of the cause of the stain, is to clear your driveway of surface dirt and debris.  The easiest way to do this is by brushing the driveway with a stiff deck brush.  Begin with horizontal strokes, and then brush the driveway vertically.  This ensures that you don't leave anything behind trapped in the cracks. 

Finish off by washing down the driveway using a garden hose under low pressure.  It's not a good idea to use a pressure washer on your driveway as a powerful jet of water will just drive the stain deeper into the surface.

Surface stains left by leaves

Getting rid of surface staining caused by piles of rotting leaves is pretty straightforward.  Make up a strong solution of washing-up liquid and warm water.  Slosh the solution over the stains and get to work with your deck brush.  Give the stained area a thorough scrubbing, and then rinse clean.  Repeat this process until the stain has gone.  If the stain proves stubborn, try adding a dash of vinegar to the solution.

Fresh oil stains

Oil stains on your driveway are particularly unsightly and can also lead to oil being trodden into your house on people's shoes.  The sooner you can remove the oil the better, as it's more easily cleaned up when it's fresh. 

Use paper towel or newspaper to soak up as much of the oil as possible.  Blot it, rather than rubbing, so as not to spread the stain or drive the oil deeper into the asphalt.  Place a generous layer of cat litter over the remainder of the stain, and leave it overnight.  The following day, sweep up the cat litter and dispose of it; the stain should be gone!  This method works by allowing the oil to gradually leach out of the asphalt and into the cat litter via a sort of osmosis. 

Finish off by scrubbing the driveway with a solution of warm water and washing-up liquid, then rinsing thoroughly with clean water.

More stubborn oil stains

Older oil stains can present more of a problem.  An effective method you can try is to pour a couple of cans of cola (not diet) over the stains, top it with a generous layer of cat litter and leave it to work overnight.

The following day, sweep up the cat litter, and scrub the driveway with a solution of warm water and washing-up liquid, as described above.  Hey presto!  The oil stains should be gone!

In conclusion

You can return your asphalt driveway to its former glory by cleaning it using the methods described above.  For particularly stubborn stains that just won't shift, contact your local concrete contractor.  They will be able to tackle the stains with specialist industrial-strength cleaning products, leaving your asphalt driveway looking as good as new.