How to Remove Stains From Your Parking Lot as Part of Fall Maintenance
Fall is an important time to check in on your parking lot and make sure everything is in good shape before winter arrives. While you’re cleaning up fallen leaves, take a moment to examine your asphalt or concrete for any stains that may have been left by mulch or oil. If you find any, consider these tips to remove them.
Mulch Stain Removal
Why they are normally not permanent, mulch stains left behind after removing leaves can be an unsightly issue that you want to remove sooner rather than later. Before you begin, make sure the parking lot is swept clean of any loose dirt or leaves that may cause further staining if exposed to water. Once the asphalt has been cleared off as much as possible, mulch stains can often be rinsed away using a hose or bucket of water. When mulch stains are too stubborn to be rinsed away with just water, try using dish soap or a diluted bleach solution to assist with the cleaning process. Scrub with a stiff brush or use a hose, but avoid anything with too much pressure that may work the stain deeper into the area instead of removing it.
Oil Stain Removal
Oil stains can be a common problem in a parking lot where vehicles or machinery are stored. It is difficult to remove oil stains by scrubbing, and doing so may do more harm than good by working the stain deeper into the asphalt. Instead, the first step to removing these stains is to soak up as much of the oil as possible. Find a substance that will absorb a lot of oil without needing to be swept up and replaced repeatedly. Sawdust can be an easy go-to choice. After letting it sit for long enough to soak up as much oil as possible, sweep it away and proceed with hosing the area down or rinsing with a bucket of water.
For tough stains, you may need to scrub the area after soaking up the oil. You can use dish soap or baking soda for this purpose. Dump it onto the area, add some water, and vigorously scrub to help get what remains of the stain out. Alternate the direction you are scrubbing as you work to remove as much oil as possible.
Why Bother Removing Stains?
Removing stains is an important part of pavement maintenance. Stains left for extended periods can keep moisture trapped in the surface, eventually contributing to the surface breaking down. While one stain in a parking lot may not seem like a big deal, it can help to address problems before the winter, when the surface will generally be exposed to even more moisture and strain.
Chances are your parking lot will be stained at some point or another. While it can require a bit of effort, taking the time to clean up stains in the fall helps a property manager maintain the appearance and functionality of the area. If you find yourself needing help with your pavement, or if it’s time for a replacement, call us at Pavecon. We provide the professional services you need to get the job done right.