A clean driveway is a source of joy for home occupants. Besides increasing the home curb appeal, it is instrumental in keeping you healthy and maintaining your home’s market value.
As a traffic central area, it is common for a driveway to get dirty, oily, and accumulate debris over time. This can start in zoned patches of your driveway and later spread to the entire surface if left unattended.
Here are tips that will make cleaning your first driveway cleaning experience a smooth and successful one.
Get All Tools In Place
Without the tools of the trade, it is impossible to give your driveway a thorough clean-up. Regardless of the magnitude of spread, the right equipment always eliminates the toughest stains on a concrete surface.
Here are the best tools for the job:
- Sprayer with a nozzle
- Scrub brush
- Stiff outdoor broom
- Detergent (liquid soap)
It would be best if you always prioritized gadgets that make cleaning your driveway easy.
Determine Your Driveway Type
Although most driveways appear similar on the surface, there are over 15 unique types across the market. While there’s no “one grease remover for all,” knowing the kind of material on your driveway helps narrow down your options.
The surface is less porous for an Asphalt-made driveway, making it difficult for oil, grease, or slimy dirt to leave a permanent mark. If this is the case, a biodegradable household cleaner should do the trick.
Apply some on the affected area and let it sit for several minutes before proceeding to rinse the area with water from a hose.
Concrete driveways are more complicated, as their slightly porous nature allows substances like oil to sip inside. When this happens, you must move quickly and place suitable absorbents on top to draw it out. Give the absorbents enough time to bind the oil.
Extra Tip: Larger spills often demand stronger absorbents compared to smaller ones.
After successfully absorbing part of the spill, let solvents do the rest. Apply your preferred solvent on the surface and give it at least 30 minutes to break down the oil components.
Use water from a pressure pipe to rinse the area and be wary of any leftover marks. Repeat the process several times if the stubborn stains persist.
Start By Cleaning The Greasy Stains
Grease spots around your driveways are always the hardest to get rid of. Apart from reducing the quality of your driveway, grease is a threat to living organisms (like outdoor plants) in your front yard.
To successfully remove grease stains from your driveway, your must act quickly to limit further spread.
Clear The Area
Before doing a deep clean of your driveway, get rid of the loose debris and dirt using an outdoor broom. Cover any cars or house walls in the vicinity to protect them from direct contact with the cleaning agents.
It also helps to confirm that the driveway drainage system is clear or clogged with dirt to avoid an overflow of water as you clean.
Pick A Suitable Cleaner
Once you know the type of driveway material, it becomes easy to find a suitable cleaning agent.
If you have a concrete driveway, initial homemade solutions should include dishwashing soap or an absorbent like kitty litter. For the asphalt driveway, baking soda and bleach offer the best results.
Always go for cleaners that maintain the integrity of your driveway, all while getting rid of tough stains.
Remember, old stains may require more than one application to come off effectively.
Use High-Pressure Water Sparingly
When it’s your first time cleaning the driveway, pressurized water can seem like the easy way out. Nonetheless, this technique can have long-term adverse effects on the quality of your driveway.
The intense power of the water coming from the hosepipe can force stains further into the surface, making them a permanent patch.
Instead, rely on absorbents or solvents to naturally remove the stains or at least break down the holding molecules, making them soluble enough to wash away.
Handle Tire Marks And Mildew The Old Fashion Way
Tire marks, Mold, and Mildew are recipes for driveway disaster when left unchecked.
To remove either of these three, you need brains more than brawn.
For example, instead of scrubbing off the marks using soap and water solution, use more conventional methods like applying a degreaser.
When the discoloration migrates to the sealer, you should opt for high solids content solvents that limit the spread of tire plasticizers.
Driveways under a shade are prone to mold and mildew infestation. If this is the case, there are a plethora of available outdoor coatings and cleaners to solve the issue.
Mold detergent killers come off as the best solution for doing away with unwanted plants. If you’re concerned about the welfare of nearby plant life, begin with less volatile solutions like white vinegar.
When it comes to a home’s aesthetic beauty, simple details like keeping your driveway clean help a great deal in standing out from the crowd. If you want to increase the resale value of your home, or make an excellent first impression to guests or potential clients, start with the driveway that is at the heart of your property.
If this looks like hard work, professionals are always on standby to help you get the job done prudently.