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Cement Experts- Cleaners?

Water Romper

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I know MANY of you have cement driveways, pads, walkways etc- What's the latest & greatest for cleaning cement ? Seems the solvents sold at the local auto stores and/or HD and Lowes just don't cut it anymore. Simple Green, 409 etc don't work. Tried some DEP Purple stuff- nope, WD40 has some degreaser- nope, even tried GUNK-nope. With all the mechanics and chemical experts here, there has to be that magic solution or powder that makes cement look good again.
 

jones performance

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the oreilys brand engine degreaser and a pressure washer got the oil stains off pertty dam well from my dodge marking its spot all the time.
 
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lakemadness

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What are you trying to clean/remove? Oil stains, rust, mildew, tire marks?
I might have some recommendations based on what you’re trying to remove.

My company cleans millions of square feet a year of concrete- parking garages, loading docks, strip malls you name it.
 

LargeOrangeFont

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They slurry sealed the street in Havasu in front of my house and I got a couple small tar stains on the driveway from a tire rolling through a small bubble of uncured tar.

What can I get this off with? I was thinking the concentrated cement cleaner and a wire brush. Any suggestions?
 

HitIt

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What are you trying to clean/remove? Oil stains, rust, mildew, tire marks?
^^ this. need to know what it is, if it has penetrated, etc. Otherwise, the catch all solution is to grind it till it looks pretty!
 

lakemadness

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we use some of their products. Work pretty well. They sell in smaller quantities. Some real nasty jobs we have other products but can only get them in 55 gallon barrels.

LOF- you might try their double eagle. The best approach is using a hot water pressure washer. If you can get ahold of a hot water unit do it. Some equipment places rent them. Our units get to 180-200 degrees. Really helps with oil and grease.
 

The Prisoner

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Funny I just did my driveway yesterday. Degreaser. With a buffer and black pad.
F487CB1A-D1AC-4650-877C-5C8C9E8D7835.jpeg
AD3E3B8C-AF9D-4ACA-9F94-307184162C20.jpeg
 
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snowhammer

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Its concrete, not cement :cool: 😁

I'm not a fan of muriatic acid as may create a bigger eyesore. A wire brush can leave metal behind which may lead to a rust stain. I've used a concentrate degreaser and let it soak in without water rinsing. Time and sunlight are your friends.
 

Hammer

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Anything for hard water spots? My backyard concrete around the pool is the worst!!!
 

SLT Kota

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How about for rust? I'm trying to avoid taking a metal brush to it if I can help it.
 

ConcreteDr

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Concrete is a porous material made up of sand rock cement and water.

When the water leaves thru the hydration process also know as curing it leaves voids for various contaminates to enter.

Most of the time a wash & scrub will help simple green is one good choice.

NEVER use acid it kills permanently the integrity of the cement and stops the hydration process for ever , concrete will continue to Harden over time with H2O and Oxygen present.

The best solution to prevent concrete from becoming stained it to wet cure for at least a week or more no one ever cures concrete properly unless its mandated by the specifications on the project for example DOT work, most government work and the better civil contractors.

After proper curing install a penetrating reactive sealer usually silicate or silane base chemistry.

It kills me to see all the amateur ( so called experts ) pouring concrete up and down the river....

The best one is down by me theres a concrete expert ( HAHAHA ) telling folks they don't need rebar if they use fiber in the concrete mix this is total fraud they say it will prevent cracking bull shit I went and inspected several of his projects all have no rebar and after a pickup backed a boat over the slab BOOM cracks....

ACI the American Concrete Institute has some good information if your interested.

If you really understand cement , concrete and the process you will understand that most concrete is not poured properly.

Another big mistake made in the desert is the altering of the W/C ratio ( water to cement ratio ) concrete is designed to perform based on a science of how the materials are assembled if you alter by adding water beyond the intended mix design the final material is not as it was intended and will be a problem eventually ......

some of my suggestions are....

Fibers never

Rebar always and properly installed above the base not laying on the base.

Cement is the glue more is better anything under a 5 sac mix is shit in my opinion .

Water cure always the longer the better we used a foam mater backed with PVC or HDPE / Burlap or old carpet works well holds moisture for a long time.

Control joints / saw cuts are important ... tooled joints in extreme thermal cycling environments work well.

I know a lot of guys here will not agree with lots of this I understand I have stopped doing any new work for general contractors for many years because I prefer to work directly for owners and fix the low bidders mistakes...

The forensics reality of today is if you cheat we can find out how thru science we can tell what cement you used how much how much water was used was the proper sand used was the rock proper etc etc....bottom line is there is no secrets with concrete.

Another piece of advise always take samples as if you were going to send them to a lab ( we test every project every time )

if the concrete suppliers know this you will get what you ordered not someones left overs of a off spec load.

I spend a lot on testing for my clients and they never know until they get our close out documents then they get the breaks... who said trust but verify ??

I know this is a long answer to a short question but I know the guys here usually want the best for there homes and families and concrete never gets the respect it deserves so I thought this might help someone ....
 

Water Romper

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Concrete is a porous material made up of sand rock cement and water.

When the water leaves thru the hydration process also know as curing it leaves voids for various contaminates to enter.

Most of the time a wash & scrub will help simple green is one good choice.

NEVER use acid it kills permanently the integrity of the cement and stops the hydration process for ever , concrete will continue to Harden over time with H2O and Oxygen present.

The best solution to prevent concrete from becoming stained it to wet cure for at least a week or more no one ever cures concrete properly unless its mandated by the specifications on the project for example DOT work, most government work and the better civil contractors.

After proper curing install a penetrating reactive sealer usually silicate or silane base chemistry.

It kills me to see all the amateur ( so called experts ) pouring concrete up and down the river....

The best one is down by me theres a concrete expert ( HAHAHA ) telling folks they don't need rebar if they use fiber in the concrete mix this is total fraud they say it will prevent cracking bull shit I went and inspected several of his projects all have no rebar and after a pickup backed a boat over the slab BOOM cracks....

ACI the American Concrete Institute has some good information if your interested.

If you really understand cement , concrete and the process you will understand that most concrete is not poured properly.

Another big mistake made in the desert is the altering of the W/C ratio ( water to cement ratio ) concrete is designed to perform based on a science of how the materials are assembled if you alter by adding water beyond the intended mix design the final material is not as it was intended and will be a problem eventually ......

some of my suggestions are....

Fibers never

Rebar always and properly installed above the base not laying on the base.

Cement is the glue more is better anything under a 5 sac mix is shit in my opinion .

Water cure always the longer the better we used a foam mater backed with PVC or HDPE / Burlap or old carpet works well holds moisture for a long time.

Control joints / saw cuts are important ... tooled joints in extreme thermal cycling environments work well.

I know a lot of guys here will not agree with lots of this I understand I have stopped doing any new work for general contractors for many years because I prefer to work directly for owners and fix the low bidders mistakes...

The forensics reality of today is if you cheat we can find out how thru science we can tell what cement you used how much how much water was used was the proper sand used was the rock proper etc etc....bottom line is there is no secrets with concrete.

Another piece of advise always take samples as if you were going to send them to a lab ( we test every project every time )

if the concrete suppliers know this you will get what you ordered not someones left overs of a off spec load.

I spend a lot on testing for my clients and they never know until they get our close out documents then they get the breaks... who said trust but verify ??

I know this is a long answer to a short question but I know the guys here usually want the best for there homes and families and concrete never gets the respect it deserves so I thought this might help someone ....
Damn...all I wanted was to get some Oil and Power Steering fluid stains off of a 1 ft x 2ft section on a cement driveway that was poured 1n 1990
 

motormonkey

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What about the simple green driveway cleaners. Any good?
 

DLC

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what about turning up your hot water heater and running it to your pressure washer?
You should be able to get it up to 140-150 fairly easy


we use some of their products. Work pretty well. They sell in smaller quantities. Some real nasty jobs we have other products but can only get them in 55 gallon barrels.

LOF- you might try their double eagle. The best approach is using a hot water pressure washer. If you can get ahold of a hot water unit do it. Some equipment places rent them. Our units get to 180-200 degrees. Really helps with oil and grease.
 

lakemadness

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what about turning up your hot water heater and running it to your pressure washer?
You should be able to get it up to 140-150 fairly easy
lol. Maybe? Most home pressure water units need some psi to be fed. They won’t pull water. Not sure how much pressure comes out of the water heater. You would also blow through the water pretty quick!
 
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Clearmax

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They slurry sealed the street in Havasu in front of my house and I got a couple small tar stains on the driveway from a tire rolling through a small bubble of uncured tar.

What can I get this off with? I was thinking the concentrated cement cleaner and a wire brush. Any suggestions?
I also had this at my house. My pressure washer took it right off.
 

ka0tyk

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You’re never going to “clean” oil that’s soaked into concrete. You need to extract it. Go to auto zone and buy a big bag of absorbent stuff. Looks like kitty litter. Put it on all your spots. I take my foot and scuff it into the driveway. Leave it for a week.

aggressive power washing or metal brushing just removes the top layer of the concrete and in my experience makes it more porous and it just gets even dirtier.
 

RandyH

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There are a couple of really good citrus or orange cleaners for oil and asphalt/tar...The black top guys carry it around in thier trucks and buy it by the barrel. AJ could probably tell you the best stuff to buy. Works amazing for getting oil and tar off your fenders too.
 

buck35

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You’re never going to “clean” oil that’s soaked into concrete. You need to extract it. Go to auto zone and buy a big bag of absorbent stuff. Looks like kitty litter. Put it on all your spots. I take my foot and scuff it into the driveway. Leave it for a week.

aggressive power washing or metal brushing just removes the top layer of the concrete and in my experience makes it more porous and it just gets even dirtier.
I hose it down with brake clean and then liberally apply the kitty litter on top. That seems to work pretty well.
 

Melloyellovector

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We use LAs totally awesome from 99 cent stores. Had a high end job that we were shooting pool. Concrete truck that made 4 trips back n forth all day was leaking oil and hydraulic fluid all day In driveway. End of day when everyone gone. What in the name of baby jesus! Rep came out with a few gallons that night and boom gone
 

DMF

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What are you trying to clean/remove? Oil stains, rust, mildew, tire marks?
I might have some recommendations based on what you’re trying to remove.

My company cleans millions of square feet a year of concrete- parking garages, loading docks, strip malls you name it.
Rust
 

Chili Palmer

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For petroleum stains try Mottsenbockers #2 or the orange air freshener they sell at Home Depot. Spray it on, scrub it and hit with a strong steam of water, a pressure washer is a plus.
 

lbhsbz

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Damn...all I wanted was to get some Oil and Power Steering fluid stains off of a 1 ft x 2ft section on a cement driveway that was poured 1n 1990
Awesome cleaner/degreaser (the yellow stuff) from the 99 cent store. pour it on straight, brush it into the stain with a scrub brush, hose it off.
 

Water Romper

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Lots of great ideas here. The best "Fix" going forward would be a new truck but I'm about 50-75k short so its a monthly chore for me.
 

Joe mama

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I’ve had good luck with carb cleaner. It looks worse till it evaporates
 
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