The driveway is often a neglected area but driveway cleaning is just as important. People don’t usually care how their driveway looks and one day you walk out and find that the years of dirt buildup, wear and tear, and stains are catching up on you. Suddenly you have that desire to scrub clean your driveway.
Driveway cleaning steps
Hose it down
The first thing you should do is use a durable hose and hose down your driveway with water. This will get rid of any dust and dirt on the surface and clear out any debris or small stones. If you are using colored or stamped concrete for your driveway, a pressure washer will be more effective for this step.
Treat stains first
If your driveway has a lot of oil and antifreeze stains, you should apply a degreaser on the said stains before you wash them out. Allow a few hours for the degreaser to soak up the stain before scrubbing with a wire brush. If there is still some left, reapply and repeat the process. You can also use natural absorbents to treat stains such as cornmeal, baking soda, and cat litter.
Set up your pressure washer
As mentioned earlier, a pressure hose is the best for the job. If you do not own any of these, check your friends or local businesses if you can borrow or rent one. Always test the pressure first on a small area of the driveway. If you have a graveled driveway or a bricked driveway, you shouldn’t use a high-pressure washer as it may dislodge the gravel or damage the bricks.
Applying the detergent
Check out the instructions that come with the pressure washer and keep an eye out for what kind of detergent is compatible with it. When applying detergent, always go with low-pressure. Allow the detergent to sit for about 15 minutes before you rinse it out. Remember to never use bleach since this can damage your pressure washer.
Rinse it out
Use the high-pressure nozzle to rinse away the detergent. Make sure that the pressure washer is in rinse mode. Make sure you follow the same direction you used when you were applying the detergent.
Seal your driveway
Did you know that concrete, like wood, needs sealing? This will add a protective layer over your concrete driveway and will help it look cleaner for a longer time.
If your concrete was made lately, the newer concrete may already have a sealer along in the mix. If it does, sealing the driveway will no longer be necessary.
You can test if there is an active sealer on the driveway by placing a few drops of water on the concrete. If the water beads up, there is a sealer. If the water gets absorbed right away, then it needs a sealer.
After cleaning the concrete, make sure it is totally dry before you apply the sealer. You will more likely have to do the sealing the next day.