Removing Paver Stains, from Grease to Chewing Gum
Renew your patio by getting rid of those pesky stains.
In the course of a patio’s lifetime, stains are inevitable. They are like unwanted and filthy guests that can be very difficult to get rid of. And, unfortunately, there is no easy approach to removing stains from pavers. You are probably going to get your elbows dirty on this one. You can, however, make the task much less time-consuming and frustrating by addressing stains in the proper manner.
First of all, it should be noted that commercial stain removers are made that are specifically designed to remove stains from concrete. Inquire about these cleaners at your local home improvement or masonry supply store. Some of these cleaners are very strong and volatile, so use caution and follow instructions and warnings carefully. The types of stains that each cleaner can handle should be listed on the bottle itself.
Now, should such high-powered cleaners be unavailable or if you’d prefer the down-home, everyday solution to paver stains, there are a variety of tips, depending on the type of stain. These answers to paver stains are useful whether or not you would prefer professional stain removers because it is best to attack paver stains as soon as they appear. Following are some common stains and how they can be removed:
- Blood, condiments, grease. Apply liquid detergent to the stain and let it sit and penetrate for about half an hour. Then, scrub and rinse with hot water.
- Caulking, chewing gum. Scrape off any excess and scrub using denatured alcohol. Rinse with hot water and detergent.
- Leaf stains, wood rot, tobacco. Apply bleach and scrub with a stiff brush.
- Penetrating oil or grease. Mop up excess. Then cover with kitty litter or talc. Let it sit for a day and then sweep it up.
- Paint. Fresh latex paint should be mopped up immediately. Then soak and scrub the remaining paint with hot water, scouring powder, and a stiff brush. Dried latex or oil-based paint should be scraped off as best as possible. Let paint remover sit on stain for half an hour and then loosen with a light scrubbing. Repeat this process until all paint is removed.
As you can see, most stains can be handled with household products. It is vitally important that stains be addressed as soon as possible. Concrete pavers are porous and will happily soak up stains. Every day stains are left to their devices, they get harder to remove. In some cases, a commercial-grade cleaner may be necessary. For more information on stains, see the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (ICPI).
If paver stains are severe, it may be in your best interest to hire a professional to come in and take care of the problem. After you or a professional has removed the paver stains, beginning and maintaining a cleaning regimen is highly recommended. You may also choose to apply a sealant to your pavers to prevent future stains from setting. They are especially useful in high-traffic areas.
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