View Full Version : Cleaning up an oil spill

11-07-2009, 07:38 PM
My car is in the shop and I got a service loaner which is leaking oil. Since I am kind of new to the whole notion of having a garage, what is the best way to remove an oil stain? I would greatly appreciate any wisdom :bowdown:. On the upside, perhaps now I have a real reason to get garage floor tiles :bounce:

11-07-2009, 07:55 PM
kitty litter does a great job

11-07-2009, 07:56 PM
soak it up with saw dust or cat litter first then take a degreaser like purple power or simple green with a stiff broom and clean the spot. hi dri also works very well for soaking up spills.

11-07-2009, 07:59 PM
Welcome to GJ. Use oil dry or clay cat litter. Sweep the initial surface oil away with some oil dry etc. Put some more oil dry etc down and grind it into the floor well with your shoe or boot. Sweep the floor again and apply a 50/50 mixture of kerosene and Castrol Super Clean to the area. Wait for a few hours and hose it off.

11-07-2009, 08:04 PM
I too, have had good luck with saw dust. You do however, need to help the process by tamping/patting the spill.

After the bulk is absorbed, follow with a degreaser type solution to finish the process. (as stated by the other members ) :bounce:

11-07-2009, 08:09 PM
All the above are good measures, but unfortunately, it won't be the last time oil is spilled or remedies are tried. I also tried my best - as many do - to keep my new slab new-looking....but now it's just a mish mash of spots where oils and other liquids have spilled, each one a different shade depending on which method I tried to clean up the spill.
I know it's not what you want to hear - but dems the "brakes"....tranny's....engines...

11-07-2009, 08:20 PM
If you have a nice new slab it is best to use a penetrating sealer, not a coating, BEFORE the inevitable spills.:beer:

11-07-2009, 09:42 PM
Thanks for all your help. I will try kitty litter and then some good degreaser.

11-07-2009, 09:44 PM
I use the kerosene as a solvent along with the degreaser to penetrate the stain. It seems to work much better than the water based cleaners.

Remember to use the clay type kitty litter. The clumping stuff does not work. :)

11-07-2009, 09:46 PM
I know it's not what you want to hear - but dems the "brakes"....tranny's....engines...

Yeah. Like they say "$h!t happens", it should be "stains happen".

11-07-2009, 09:49 PM
I have found great results with soaking up the majority with sawdust then taking plain old starting fluid (either) and spraying it down. Soak up the remainder with a shop towel, the towel will wick up the either and oil leaving the concrete vertually stain free. Just remember, until the either evaporates you will have an extreamly flammable shop rag.

11-07-2009, 11:40 PM
I usually get them with powdered Tide, because it's handy. The thing I've found that works the absolute best is the little clay desiccant balls that came in the crate with my Harbor Freight compressor. After grinding a few of those in, the stain is gone without a trace.

11-07-2009, 11:50 PM
That is the main reason I put epoxy on my floor.

11-08-2009, 12:40 AM
Kitty litter works best for me......however, if you notice a leak, this place has the best oil spill absorbant materials I've ever seen. A little on the high price side, but they work I usually keep a box around just for accidents. - and no, I'm not a vendor.

michael murder
11-08-2009, 12:58 AM
Like Torque1st said, grind it in! I've had a lot of success with grinding kitty litter into spills. I made a tool which is essential a short block of wood on a broom handle to really grind it in. It can achieve really good results. In my experience this method works the best on newer spills.

ironroad 9c1
11-08-2009, 06:18 PM
Epoxy coat your floor and oil just wipes right up.

11-09-2009, 09:16 AM
Essentially same as what the rest said.

Wipe what you can off with a paper towel or rag. Then but the cheapest kitty litter (clay, not the clumping kind) and grind it in with your shoe. After a couple days if you still need more, use a solvent with a rag.