How To Clean Oil From Your Driveway

Tuesday 4th April 2023

Ellen Warren

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Car leaking oil


When a rare event like an oil spill occurs, a leak can quickly lead to permanent stains or damage your garage and driveway. It could also pollute the local environment which may have devastating consequences.

Here at ICE Cleaning, we offer rapid response oil spill cleaning services. Our specialist cleaners can decontaminate and contain a spill effectively whether it's gasoline, hydraulic oil, or diesel.

Read on to learn more about how oil could damage your driveway and what you should do if oil leaks from your car.

Why is your car leaking oil?

Oil leaks indicate a deeper issue with your car and they may quickly become a hazard if you cannot identify its source. There could be various reasons why your vehicle is leaking and you should take it to a repair shop as soon as possible.

If you cannot find the source, a mechanic at a shop can identify and rectify it regardless. Your car might be leaking because:

  • The oil filter or gasket is loose or needs replacing
  • An external oil pump is damaged and leaking
  • The oil pan gasket is leaking due to loosened bolts
  • A damaged or old oil drain plug is leaking
  • The oil filler cap has come loose or needs replacing
  • The valve gasket needs a replacement
  • The engine could be overflowing with oil
  • The crankcase ventilation valve and hose are clogged
  • The head gasket of the coolant system is damaged
  • The oil cooler could be damaged and leaking
  • Your cars oil pressure sensor has broken and led to a leak
  • A lack of coolant led to the engine cracking and leaking

The dangers of an engine oil spill

If engine oil has leaked onto your driveway, you should ensure that the oil has not spilt onto any grass or public pathway. Damage to the environment or pavements can result in a fine from your local council.

Any oil that touches your exposed skin could lead to skin irritation and dermatitis if left for too long. When warm engine oil spills onto your skin, it may irritate the skin to the point where it causes pain and swelling. If the engine was running during a spill, the oil could burn the skin severely and you will require immediate medical attention.

Inhaling the fumes of hot or leaking oil can expose you to lethal chemicals in the air which might irritate or damage your lungs, especially in a contained area. Spilt oil is a slip hazard and a severe fire risk, and you could be responsible for a car accident if the oil spills into the road and causes an accident.

Why you should not clean the oil yourself

When oil starts to leak out of your car, it is imperative that you act quickly to prevent any contamination of the environment. If the spill occurred in a contained space such as a garage, you should quarantine the area and keep children or pets away.

By trying to clean it yourself, you can also expose yourself to toxic chemicals and only exacerbate the severity of the spill. Using commercial chemicals or cleaning products may pose a similar risk and damage the environment more if the oil has contaminated soil nearby.

Do not try to contain the oil spill if you are not qualified and the situation remains unsafe due to heat or fire risk. You should immediately contact an oil spill damage cleaning company to come and tackle the issue, especially if the environment is at risk of oil contamination.

Will oil stain your driveway?

Once you have contained a spill and prevented environmental contamination, you only have a few days before it stains the driveway. The severity of a stubborn and permanent stain will vary depending on the material of your driveway.

If the stone of your driveway is porous, the oil could absorb much quicker and become harder to remove. You may need to replace the material if the stain has remained too long.

Concrete is also prone to oil damage which might be detrimental, especially if the concrete has been freshly poured. Once oil spills on concrete, it will slowly break down its strength and durability the longer it is left there. If oil has stained your driveway, it will require specialist cleaning.

Get in touch

Here at ICE Cleaning, we are an oil spillage cleaning company that offers rapid and efficient cleaning services. Our IOSH-accredited technicians use industrial-grade equipment and chemical solutions to safely contain, clean, and decontaminate your driveway.

We are available nationwide, 365 days a year, and can be on-site in just a few hours in an emergency. If you want to know more about our oil spill cleaning services, give our team a ring on 0208 066 0360 or send us an inquiry at

Sydney Bowell

Sydney Bowell

Operations Assistant

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